Sunday, September 5, 2010

Dolphins place Will Allen on I.R., claim four off waivers

Final cuts may have been made yesterday, but that doesn't mean the Miami Dolphins are finished shaping their roster before the regular season begins next week.

The Dolphins made eight roster moves in all Sunday, including placing cornerback Will Allen on injured reserve and terminating the contracts of veteran guard Cory Procter and defensive ends Marques Douglas and Charles Grant.

Additionally, the Dolphins claimed four players off waivers—offensive linemen Jermey (not a typo) Parnell and Joe Reitz, and defensive ends Clifton Geathers and Rob Rose.

Parnell will wear No. 73 for the Dolphins. Reitz will take No. 66, Geathers No. 97, and Rose No. 71.

Now, let's take a closer look at the new faces brought in by the Dolphins:

Clifton Geathers

A South Carolina native, Geathers is the younger brother of Cincinnati Bengals defensive end Robert Geathers and the nephew of former NFL defensive tackle Jumpy Geathers.

As a junior at the University of South Carolina in 2009, Geathers totaled 40 tackles, three sacks, and a forced fumble for the Gamecocks. He subsequently declared for the NFL Draft with a year of eligibility remaining.

Geathers was selected by the Cleveland Browns in the sixth round of the 2010 NFL Draft and signed a four-year deal with the team on June 28. He appeared in all four of the Browns' preseason games in 2010 and totaled five tackles, including three in last week's finale.

A mountain of a man at 6-foot-7 and 300 pounds, Geathers possesses good speed for his size and is a powerful force on the defensive line. He projects nicely as a 3-4 defensive end and will likely back up rookie Jared Odrick on the right side.

Jermey Parnell

A four-year letterman in basketball at Ole Miss, Parnell averaged 3.7 points and 3.3 rebounds per game and had 22 blocked shots as a senior.

Despite having not played organized football since eighth grade, Parnell joined the Rebels' football team in 2008 and appeared in five games as a reserve defensive end and special teams player.

After going undrafted in the 2009 NFL Draft, Parnell signed with the New Orleans Saints in May and was converted to offensive tackle. He was briefly converted to tight end during the preseason, but moved back to the offensive line and spent the year on the team's practice squad.

Parnell possesses good size at 6-foot-7 and is athletic for the tackle position as a former hoops player, but he's still raw as an NFL prospect.

He offers some developmental upside at tackle and could be useful in goal-line situations at tight end, but he's got a long way to go and looks to be Miami's third-team offensive tackle after Pat McQuistan.

Joe Reitz

A four-year starting center for Western Michigan's basketball team, Reitz earned first-team All-MAC honors as a senior after averaging 15 points per game and stealing 10 passes.

Reitz entered the NFL with the Baltimore Ravens as an undrafted rookie in 2008, weighing just around 270 pounds. He was initially aiming to work as a tight end, but was later moved to offensive tackle.

After spending the first two months of the season on the Ravens' practice squad, Reitz suffered a shoulder injury and spent the rest of the year on the practice squad injured list.

Reitz was re-signed in 2009, but was waived during final cuts and spent the entire regular season on the team's practice squad.

After being re-signed again in 2010, Reitz worked primarily at left guard for the Ravens and drew a start in the preseason finale.

Reitz's size and basketball history make him an intriguing prospect, but he doesn't have the talent for offensive tackle and is significantly lacking the bulk for guard. It's hard to imagine he has much of a future in the NFL long-term, but he'll probably be working behind Richie Incognito in practice for now.

Rob Rose

A Cleveland, Ohio native, Rose attended Glenville High School and played under head coach Ted Ginn, Sr.—father of former Dolphins first-round wide receiver Ted Ginn, Jr.

Although he played four seasons for the Ohio State Buckeyes, Rose was limited to a reserve role his entire career. He finished his collegiate career with 26 tackles and 7.5 sacks in 43 games.

Signing with the Seattle Seahawks as an undrafted free agent in 2010, Rose appeared in all four preseason games with the team and totaled three tackles.

Rose appears to be an extremely borderline NFL prospect and probably doesn't belong on an active roster right now. He has the size for a 3-4 defensive end at a 6-foot-4 and 290 pounds, but he's simply lacking in the talent department.

It wouldn't surprise me to see Rose kept inactive for the Dolphins' first game against Buffalo, and then waived and re-signed to the practice squad as the team brings back either Marques Douglas or Charles Grant on a non-guaranteed salary.


The biggest blow among these moves is the loss of Will Allen, who is now out for the season due to complications recovering from a torn ACL suffered last season.

The Dolphins' secondary was already a cause for concern even with the hope that Allen would return soon, and the depth at cornerback takes a great hit with his loss.

I'm also not entirely surprised to see Douglas and Grant cut, although I'm not convinced either is totally finished in Miami. It's possible the team released them to avoid making their entire 2010 salary guaranteed if they are on the Week One roster, so they could be re-signed after the season opener.

In that event, the Dolphins would likely waive one of the new defensive ends they just added and try to sneak him to the practice squad.

Procter's release surprises me the least, as recently-acquired tackle Pat McQuistan has experience at guard. The Dolphins also have the option of using Jake Grove at center and moving Joe Berger to guard in case of an injury.

As for the new additions, Geathers is far and away my favorite of the bunch. He's a beast at his size and has a lot of potential as a 3-4 end, so it wouldn't surprise me to see him stick around all season and maybe even worked into the rotation depending on how quickly he can develop.

The rest of the moves are bit perplexing, as I don't consider Parnell, Reitz, or Rose talented enough to be on an NFL roster right now. I have to imagine that some or all of them are placeholders that will give way to veterans after Week One is over. The Dolphins need reliable depth right now, and none of these guys fit the bill.

As always, check out the updated projected depth chart here.

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