Surtain and other news

The agent for cornerback Patrick Surtain has received permission to seek a trade for his client, whose future with the team has been cloudy because of his contract situation. The two questions now are whether a trade can be consummated and what the Dolphins could get in return.

The only reason the Dolphins would consider trading Surtain is because he has only one year remaining on his contract and also has a high cap number for 2005, not a good situation on a team already more than $17 million over the cap.

Surtain remains a top-notch corner and it doesn't make sense to trade him from a purely production standpoint, but economics might not leave the Dolphins any choice.

The cornerback has been looking for a long-term deal for a while, and the thinking in his camp is that they won't get it from Miami.

The only drawback with Surtain as a player has been nagging knee problems, and we're sure everyone remembers the one-time assessment that he had a degenerative condition.

Surtain has shot down that theory, as well as the anonymous contention that he hasn't done a great job of keeping himself in the best shape possible.

On ability alone, Surtain could land the Dolphins a first-round pick in a trade, but the other factors might make that difficult.

Dallas and San Diego, both with two No. 1 picks and needs at cornerback, could be logical trading partners.

In other news:

-- On the subject of Surtain, he wound up turning down the offer to replace injured cornerback Chris McAlister in the Pro Bowl because of a groin injury. So Buffalo's Nate Clements will wind up being the replacement for McAlister.

-- Dolphins executive vice president Bryan Wiedmeier is among the candidates to become president of the Seattle Seahawks.

-- Marc Trestman, the Dolphins' assistant head coach/quarterbacks coach last season, has taken a job as offensive coordinator at North Carolina State University.

-- Wide receiver Sam Simmons, a 2003 Dolphins draft pick who spent some time on the roster as a rookie, has been signed to a 2005 contract by the Pittsburgh Steelers.

-- The Dolphins still are looking for a defensive coordinator to replace Jim Bates.

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