The Miami Dolphins have signed free agent wide receiver Chad Ochocinco, just days after the New England Patriots released the enigmatic superstar for not being able to learn their offense. The Dolphins quickly pounced on bringing in an aging diva wide receiver for a one year contract to improve their receiving corps.
Miami did not sign Ochocinco to help make the team better offensively. They had a better wide receiver in Brandon Marshall who they traded away from less than market value. They got rid of him because, well lets just say he was a distraction off of the field.
So, what about Ochocinco? While he is a distraction as well, he is a different type of distraction.
Marshall, while clearly far more talented than Ochocinco, at least at this point in both of their careers, was a head case due to his own personal demons as well as legal issues. Ochocinco, while entertaining and charismatic, does not get into trouble with the law, so there is not as much cause for concern with him as there was with Marshall.
But Ochocinco represents something for Miami that Marshall did not. Ochocinco brings something to the team and the franchise that Plaxico Burress and Braylon Edwards do not.
Simply put, Ochocinco can now be the star of the show when HBO begins filming the upcoming season of Hard Knocks with the Dolphins. After all, this is like a sequel for him, as he already starred on Hard Knocks when his former Cincinnati Bengals were the featured team a few years back.
That is clearly the main reason they signed him. It has very little to do with football.
Could he be an upgrade over Brian Hartline, Davone Bess and Legedu Naanee? I certainly hope so, for everyone’s sake. But is he better than Marshall? Not even close. Is he better than Burress, who also wanted to sign with Miami? Highly unlikely.
But he is a brand. He will help Miami sell it’s fading brand this offseason, especially on Hard Knocks.
What he does past the show is anybody’s best guess.
My best bet is not all that much, at least in terms of numbers on the field.
Bottom line is that he will help put some asses in seats, and isn’t that all that matters in South Beach?