Smith visiting Dolphins; Garrard also coming in
03/18/2012 10:30 AM
03/19/2012 7:05 AM
One day after meeting with Packers free agent quarterback Matt Flynn, the Dolphins are getting a surprise visitor to camp: 49ers free agent quarterback Alex Smith.
Smith’s visit to camp was initially reported Sunday morning by ESPN’s Adam Schefter and later confirmed.
The Dolphins and Flynn have mutual interest but have not been able to come to an agreement on terms. Flynn is believed to be seeking far more than Miami will offer.
A source reiterated that the Dolphins want Flynn, but at their price. Indications are that Flynn would like to join Joe Philbin in Miami, but has been waiting for a bigger offer from the Dolphins. But Flynn might not get any offers higher than Miami's current one.
Seattle reportedly has not made an offer to Flynn, partly because the Seahawks plan to meet with Smith after Smith visits the Dolphins.
Smith might be using the Dolphins to apply pressure on the 49ers, who have discussed the terms of a three-year offer for weeks but have not given him a contract to sign, because they are waiting on a decision from Peyton Manning.
Seattle also has interest in Smith.
Meanwhile, the Dolphins have scheduled a workout and meeting on Monday with former Jaguars starter David Garrard, his agent, Albert Irbe, told The Miami Herald.
Garrard was slowed by a bulging disc in training camp last August and subsequently released by the Jaguars before the start of the regular season.
He spoke to the Dolphins after Chad Henne was injured, "but for the money they were offering, David didn't want to get involved," Irbe said.
Then, a week later, Garrard's injury came to a head when he ruptured the disc during a workout, which he didn't immediately know. A few days later, he planned to sign with the Raiders but learned the day before that he needed surgery.
Irbe said Garrard is now 100 percent healthy. "The Dolphins want to see if he's healthy and the David of old," Irbe said. "They will like what they see. We'll see what the Dolphins want to do."
Garrard, 34, has spoken to other teams, but the Dolphins are the only visit he has booked for now.
Garrard spent nine years with the Jaguars, including five as a starter. He has 89 career touchdowns and 54 interceptions and an 85.8 rating. In 2010, his last full season, he had 23 TDs and 15 interceptions, with a 90.8 rating.
With Flynn hoping to get a contract higher than what Miami prefers to pay, the Dolphins have decided to take a look at other options and then make a decision, according to another official who has spoken with them.
Smith had his best pro season least season, throwing 17 touchdowns, just five interceptions, and a 90.7 rating. Smith led the 49ers to five comebacks win during the regular season, then rallied them for a 36-32 win against the Saints in the playoffs.
Smith, 27, earned a $4.9 million base salary in 2011. He is position to make more than the unproven Flynn, and to sign Smith, Miami would need to clear cap space.
According to the San Francisco Chronicle, the 49ers are willing to pay Smith $24 million over three years if they do not get Manning. Manning and Smith have the same agent, and the newspaper said Smith is considering changing agents because of a potential conflict of interest.
Smith and Dolphins running back Reggie Bush were high-school teammates in La Mesa, Cal.
Smith's quarterback rating ranked ninth in the league last three year - three spots ahead of the Dolphins' Matt Moore, who was at 87.1.