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Jason Taylor Returns To South Beach

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Jason Taylor Returns To South Beach
(Photo by Doug Benc/Getty Images)

Free-agent defensive end Jason Taylor has agreed to return to the city where he played all but one of his 12 seasons in the NFL.

Taylor signed a one year deal worth $1.1 million  on Wednesday. The deal also includes $400,000 of additional incentives he turned down.

The Dolphins all-time sack leader forced his way out of Miami last year and found himself with the Washington Redskins after he threatened to retire if he was not released by the Dolphins.

As new president of football operation Bill Parcells was coming in, Taylor was trying to break free from the team that had drafted him a decade earlier.

Parcells granted Taylor his wish by releasing him before the 2008 season. Taylor left Miami Beach, with a bad taste in his mouth, but that did not stop him from staying involved with the community.

“My heart has always been in Miami and so I'm truly excited to call myself a Dolphin once again," Taylor said in statement released on Wednesday.

The 2008 season with Washington was one of his worst seasons, only recording 29 tackles, 3.5 sacks, and one forced fumble.

He missed three games with an injury last year. Combine that with the miserable stats, some believe that Taylor may not have anything left in the tank.

But with a new regime in Miami that may be enough to rejuvenate his passion to play the game in the city he once ruled like a gladiator, not to mention his off the field involvement with the community.

Taylor joins a Miami team that is one year removed from one of the most impressive turn arounds in NFL history, led by former jets quarterback Chad Pennington.

In 2007, which was Taylor's last year in Miami, the Dolphins finished 1-15 and played a huge role in Taylor mulling retirement, "Dancing with the Stars" and eventually ending up in a Redskins uniform.

In 2008, the Dolphins finished 11-6, including a first round playoff loss to the Baltimore Ravens.

Taylor joins fellow veteran Joey Porter on the defensive line, who re-emerged as a force on the defense last year with 47 tackles, 17.5 sacks, and four forced fumbles.

With Taylor back in the fold, the Dolphins' defense will be much improved. The only question is, how much gas does he really have left in the tank? History shows that just when you think the old vet is done; he comes back swinging for the fences.

This just shows you that you really can go back home again. This move is smart for both Taylor and the Dolphins. Taylor gets to be close to his family and the Dolphins are getting a proven commodity.  Fans in South Beach are in for a wild ride in 2009.

 

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