Monday, February 18, 2008
The Dolphins released veteran middle linebacker Zach Thomas. The 12 year veteran turns 35 in September. Thomas has not publicly contemplated retiring, and seems to want to hook up to a contending team in an effort to win a Super Bowl ring.
Thomas only played in 5 games last season, missing time due to concussion and migraines. But he still had 52 tackles in those games. He's averaged 10.8 tackles per game over the last three seasons, which may be a product of Miami's suckiness (more offensive plays run by opponent, more running plays up the middle by opponent because they're ahead, mediocre defensive line, etc.).
When I first saw that Thomas was released, I instantly envisioned him in a Patriots uniform. He's experienced, he's a smart player, he's solid, he's consistent, and he'll probably be cheap.
One major concern is his age, of course. If Seau and/or Bruschi retire, we'd be essentially replacing them with another graying linebacker. Thomas is no longer a playmaker. He's not going to get sacks, or interceptions, or tip passes, or make tackles for a loss. He's a lot like Bruschi in that respect.
But I do think he'll wind up with the Patriots.