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  Favre to Miami? Maybe
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by Chris Shashaty, Phins.com Columnist

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The purpose of this column is NOT to predict that the Miami Dolphins will acquire Brett Favre from the Green Bay Packers.


Rather, I am here today to tell you why such a move shouldn’t be dismissed out of hand. There are some very good reasons why this story has legs, why Favre to the Dolphins could happen, why you shouldn’t say “no way”.


As things stand today, the Miami Dolphins do not have a NFL starting caliber quarterback. This is not a newsflash, but the situation “du jour”.


What they do have are two young prospects, and a journeyman.


John Beck, a 2nd year veteran, played in five games as a rookie, starting four of them, in a learning situation as bad as any rookie could be put in. One questions the real value of what was experienced.


Rookie Chad Henne just found out where his locker is. Literally.


Josh McCown is a six year vet whose passer rating has never ventured north of 75...and probably never will. He was signed to act as an insurance policy in the event that Beck and/or Henne weren’t ready to play. No one outside of McCown’s family expects him to be this team’s quarterback of the future, or to deliver very much in the way of wins.


That’s not to say that the rest of the roster isn’t capable of delivering wins. Herein, friends, lies the case for Brett Favre.


The Dolphins now have one of the best young offensive lines in the game. Rookie Jake Long and fifth year vet Vernon Carey look to be the best tackle tandem since Richmond Webb and Ron Heller (1995). Samson Satele is the best young center in the game. Veterans Justin Smiley and, presumably, Steve McKinney provide the leadership glue at guard.


The Dolphins also have a terrific 1-2 combination at RB with Ronnie Brown and Ricky Williams, among the best in the NFL. They have an explosive WR in Ted Ginn, Jr., and a solid possession man in Ernest Wilford.


They have, by several first hand accounts, an improved defensive front seven. They have a solid cover corner in Will Allen (who quietly turned in a good 2007 season) and an up-and-comer in Michael Lehan. They have two, maybe three, starting caliber safeties (health permitting).


They have what looks to be improved kick coverage teams, and kickers who can score and change field position.


If all of what I have just laid out is true, a BIG IF, the Miami Dolphins are a good QB away from ending their six year playoff drought. 


Now, rewind back to the OTA sessions this past spring. Neither Beck nor McCown were all that inspiring. Henne had what former coach Nick Saban used to call “that brook trout look”.


This doesn’t mean that Beck won’t ever “get it”; it just means that he needs more time, as Henne surely does, before he’s ready to go.


This leaves McCown, and would Bill Parcells leave it to McCown if he truly thought his team was playoff capable?


Not if he could help it.


Enter Favre. He’s 38 years old but still capable of playing at a high level. He’s decided that sitting around his farm in Kiln, Mississippi isn’t what he wants to do, not when he can still get after it like only he can. Problem is, the Packers have since moved on in the wake of Favre’s prior retirement.


NFL rules require the Packers to activate or release Favre. Packers GM Ted Thompson, in as bad a bind as any GM could be, has said they’ll activate him but that he will have to come into camp as the back-up to Aaron Rodgers.


Aside from the debate as to whether or not Thompson has gone mad, few believe the Packers will insult Favre by really following up on this laughable ploy. If they can’t convince Favre to stay retired, he’ll be headed elsewhere (either by trade or outright release). The biggest concern is keeping Favre out of the NFC North. The next concern is keeping him out of the NFC proper.


The Dolphins, being in the AFC East and not scheduled to play the Packers in 2008, would satisfy those competitive concerns. But why would Favre want to come to a team that was 1-15 last season?


The first reason is Parcells. There’s no question that Favre has enormous respect for him and the credibility he has brought to the Dolphins. And Parcells has a history of turning to older, grizzled quarterbacks in the past, most recently in 2004 when he signed a 41 year old Vinny Testaverde to take the helm in Dallas, one year after the team drafted Tony Romo. Don’t put it past the Tuna to have had some hand in this whole business.


The second reason is if (BIG IF) Favre believes the Dolphins are a good QB away from the playoffs, and thinks he is the missing piece.


Would the Dolphins trade disgruntled DE/OLB Jason Taylor to the Pack for Favre? Maybe, but such a trade seems counterintuitive as it would only weaken the case for the Dolphins being playoff ready. Only Parcells could offer up a true read on the merits of such a deal, knowing the situation as only he does. The more likely scenarios are the Dolphins offering a low conditional draft pick, or the Packers releasing him with a prior understanding of Favre’s actual destination.


In the end, it will be interesting to see how Favre’s situation plays out and whether it impacts the Dolphins or not. For now, the Dolphins aren’t talking as Favre is the property of the Packers. But if he comes to Miami, a very BIG IF, it could change everything about where the Miami Dolphins could be headed in 2008.

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