Coaching News; Players Signed

It's been a busy week for the Dolphins, who have signed seven young players to contracts for 2009 and also made a move on their coaching staff. That move was the firing of offensive line coach Mike Maser.

Maser, ironically, was the first assistant coach after Tony Sparano was named head coach last offseason.

The firing of Maser has to be considered somewhat of a surprise considering how much mileage the Dolphins were able to get out of their offensive line despite injury problems and instability at the guard position.

The Dolphins lost promising rookie starter Donald Thomas in the first game of the season, and veteran Justin Smiley went down with a fractured right leg in the Week 12 victory at St. Louis.

The interior of the Dolphins offensive line was dominated in the playoff loss to Baltimore, but it was clearly more a matter of personnel than anything else.

BIDDING BOWLES GOODBYE?: The Dolphins conceivably could find themselves with another opening on their coaching staff depending on what happens in Detroit. The Lions brought back Dolphins secondary coach Todd Bowles this week for a second interview, a clear indication they're very interested in Bowles. Bowles oversaw a Dolphins secondary that overcame a bad start to finish strong in the 2008 season.

NEW DOLPHINS: The Dolphins on Wednesday announced the signing of seven players to 2009 contracts. All seven ended the season on the Dolphins practice squad: WR Anthony Armstrong, CB Scorpio Babers, CB Will Billingsley, FB Chris Brown, DT Joe Cohen, RB Lex Hilliard and WR Todd Lowber.

DRAFT WINDS: The playoffs have worked out to the Dolphins' benefit and the result is Miami's pick in the first round of the 2009 draft has gone from 26th to 25th.

That's because Arizona and Philadelphia both advanced to the NFC Championship Game, meaning one of them will advance to the Super Bowl. Both were scheduled to pick before the Dolphins, but that will change now because the Super Bowl winner and loser automatically pick last and next-to-last in every round.

The only way the playoffs could have worked out better for the Dolphins would have been if San Diego had gone to the Super Bowl to represent the AFC. They, too, began the playoffs scheduled to pick before the Dolphins.

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