Making a quick statement

Jim Bates said upon taking over for Dave Wannstedt that there would be some changes, and Wednesday proved the man wasn't kidding. The move to let go starting free safety Antuan Edwards certainly got a lot of attention among Dolphins observers and should get a lot of attention among the players as well.

Of course, one could argue this move would have been made even if Wannstedt had remained as head coach, but we're going to say this was a Bates decision.

Why was Edwards let go? Bates didn't address that on Wednesday because he spoke to the media prior to the roster move being made, but it's clear that performance played a part in it.

Edwards clearly had not had a good season after joining the Dolphins as a free agent and winning the starting job over Arturo Freeman in training camp.

But Bates easily could have just demoted Edwards without necessarily having to cut him. Really, Edwards wasn't THAT bad.

Is it possible that unlike Wannstedt, who was loyal to his players to a fault, Bates will make his players accountable and wanted to send a strong message. Could be.

Anybody who has seen Bates on the practice field knows the guy is high energy and won't be afraid to be the bad guy, something that really was never in Wannstedt's make-up.

Edwards leaving was just the first big move by Bates, but rest assured there will be others.

For one, you can look for A.J. Feeley to take over at quarterback (even though that's a move that Wannstedt reluctantly would have made at some point).

The Dolphins will do this because they have to find out about Feeley's worthiness as a starting quarterback (it says here the answer will be a resounding NO).

You can also look for Wade Smith to get back in the starting lineup at left tackle at some point. Damion McIntosh has been a disaster since taking over for Smith in the third game of the season, and it's pretty obvious Smith has a much bigger upside.

Finally, you very well could see Vernon Carey in the starting lineup at left guard for the next game, at Seattle Nov. 21.

Starter Jeno James is out 3-4 weeks after undergoing knee surgery on Tuesday, and trying Carey there makes more sense than going with either Greg Jerman or rookie Rex Hadnot.

Beyond that, who knows?

The only thing we do know is that things will be very interesting from here on out. The Edwards move was proof of that.


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