Do It Now: Why the Miami Dolphins Shouldn't Wait to Cut Phillip Merling
We've all seen the Miami Dolphins' front office take a lot of heat from the public this offseason. With four Dolphins players already having been arrested, the team still has not taken a strong disciplinary stance.
Phillip Merling made national headlines again on Friday, after he was formally charged with felonious aggravated battery on a pregnant woman.
After posting a ridiculously low bond of just $15,000 on Friday afternoon, Merling was back at practice.
I am neither a judge, nor a member of any jury, so it is not my place to designate his guilt or innocence. Not having seen pictures of any alleged injuries to Merling's girlfriend, for all we know, she could have invented the whole story.
That being said, it is my firm belief that the Dolphins should release Merling immediately, regardless of the eventual outcome of his trial.
All moral and ethical arguments aside, there are a couple of compelling reasons to consider this course of action.
First, and perhaps least importantly, is the $1.3 million that the Dolphins could save (along with some integrity, and the continued support of their female fans) by severing ties with the third-year defensive end. Though just a drop in the bucket for any team, with the Fins' many recent costly acquisitions, every little bit is going to help.
Next is the glaring fact that, outlaw or angel, Merling is one of the Dolphins' biggest recent draft busts. The 2008 second-rounder finished out last season with an ineffectual 33 tackles, and 2.5 sacks. He only managed one sack in his rookie year.
I don't know about other Dolphins fans, but I see no need whatsoever to keep this guy around.
Phillip Merling is marginal at best; someone to simply fill a slot on the depth chart, while skating past on the bare minimum. To have a chance for success in 2010, the Dolphins are going to need to employ players that push their abilities to the maximum level.
As of Friday afternoon, the instant Merling's legal council requested a trial by jury, he became nothing but a distraction, and a potential liability for the entire Dolphins organization.
The Miami Dolphins are better off without players like Phillip Merling. If I could say just three words to the Trifecta, they would be:
Cut him now.
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