Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Dread in Miami?: Dolphins Speak with CB Mike McKenzie

Perhaps in an effort to lead the league in players with dreadlocks, the Miami Dolphins have spoken with former Packers and Saints cornerback Mike McKenzie according to the ESPN news ticker and the Miami Herald.

McKenzie, a ten year veteran, had been one of the league's best cornerbacks during his time in Green Bay and New Orleans, but suffered a devastating knee injury at the end of the 2007 season. He recovered in time for the start of the 2008 season but suffered yet another knee injury after seven games.

In 2008, he amassed a grand total of 22 tackles and 1 INT.

He was released by the Saints in March.

The Dolphins were thought to have solved their troublesome situation in the secondary earlier this year when they signed veteran free agent Eric Green and drafted young cornerbacks Vontae Davis and Sean Smith in the first two rounds of the 2009 NFL Draft.

However, if the Dolphins brain trust are putting a feeler out to McKenzie, they must have seen something during the OTAs that they didn't like in regard to the overall makeup of the group. Bringing in another veteran like McKenzie would appear to be a bad omen for Eric Green, as an older, injury-prone veteran such as McKenzie would likely pose no threat to the two roster spots now occupied by Davis and Smith.

If McKenzie were to sign with the Dolphins, that would bring the total of dreadlocked players on the squad to seven. Davone Bess, Chris Clemons, Ernest Wilford, Channing Crowder, Erik Walden, and Randy Starks are currently the only players on the roster sporting the distinctive hairstyle.

It is said that dreadlock style of hair growth received its name due to the sense of dread that came over those who encountered people wearing them. If this is a case, perhaps the Dolphins' strategy is to fill the roster with dreadlocks in an effort to paralyze the opposing team with fear and awe.

There is a precedent to this.

In 2002, Dolphin fans were witnessed to one of the most prolific seasons in dreadlock history. It was during that season that Ricky Williams' signature dreads wantonly slapped opposing defenders out of his path as he bulldozed his way to 1853 yards rushing and 16 touchdowns.

In 2003, Ricky shaved his dreads off, and the rest is history. Like Samson before him, Ricky never quite achieved the same level of awe-inducing power as he displayed with the full head of locks churning all about the field.

Then again, Ernest Wilford wears dreads... The only dread he induced in others in 2008 was in Jeff Ireland for spending millions of dollars on 25 yards of production.

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