Posted on: June 23, 2009 5:33 pm


The Dolphins are adding another dash of celebrity: singer Gloria Estefan and her producer husband Emilio Estefan are buying a "small minority ownership" stake in the team, a source said Monday.

The Grammy Award-winning Estefans will join Dolphins owner Stephen M. Ross to announce the investment officially Thursday at Land Shark Stadium.

Ross, who completed his $1.1 billion purchase of the team and stadium in January, has been seeking minority partners for months. He has also been working to infuse entertainment into the stadium experience for fans.

The source said Emilio Estefan has already been working on original songs to add to the game-day experience. Estefan Enterprises includes the couple's Bongos Cuban Cafe restaurant chain and hotels. <!-- END google ads -->

<!-- END rail --> Last month, Ross partnered with pop singer and South Florida icon Jimmy Buffett to re-name the stadium after Buffett's Land Shark Lager. The stadium is to include a Margaritaville area and Parrot Head section.

In a meeting with reporters in April, Ross said he wanted the team's ownership to mirror South Florida. "I want this team to represent what South Florida is all about. It's probably one of the most diverse populated places in country," he said at the time.

"You want that to be a positive, want the team to be reflective of that diversity."

The Dolphins announced the signing of sixth-round pick Andrew Gardner , a 6-foot-6, 310-pound offensive tackle out of Georgia Tech. As reported in the Sun Sentinel Thursday, Gardner signed a four-year deal.

His signing leaves seven of the Dolphins' nine draft picks unsigned. Training camp is expected to open Aug. 1.

Category: NFL
Tags: Dolphins
Posted on: June 22, 2009 6:59 pm

Portis on coach Zorn

Late last season, as the Redskins were slipping in the standings, frustrations began to mount. After a 6-2 start, Washington lost five of six, and first-year head coach Jim Zorn was not only the target of criticism, there was speculation that his job might be in trouble .

The latter proved to be just a rumor , but running back Clinton Portis was partly responsible for the former. During a Dec. 2008 appearance on the John Thompson show, he told the former Georgetown coach that , "We got a genius for a head coach, I don't know, I'm sure he on top of things. He's got everything figured out. Hey, that's up to him. All I can do is when he calls a play is go out and try to execute to the best of my ability."

In case it's not obvious, Portis was being sarcastic. Zorn later responded and was surprisingly diplomatic given the circumstances .

Portis and Zorn eventually worked things out and everybody lived happily ever after. Well, until last week, when Pro Football Talk reported that "Multiple sources have advised us that Portis shows little or no respect to coach Jim Zorn, and that the situation bubbled over at least once during the team's OTA sessions, with Portis telling the coach off in front of other players."

The Washington Times ' David Elfin caught up with Portis this week to get his reaction to the news that he's a team cancer .
"How this story came about, I have no idea," Portis said. "There's nothing going on. There's no beef between me and Coach Zorn. We're on good terms at this present moment. There's no problem." ...

"I don't know why people have that in their mind," Portis said. "Me and Coach [Joe] Gibbs had a great relationship. We talked more than me and Coach Zorn do, but lately me and Coach Zorn been talking, trying to get on the same page. Things been going good. He understand me and I understand him."
To be fair, Portis can be outspoken, so it's not a completely insane notion that he might sometimes say things he shouldn't. That doesn't mean he's unmanageable or ignores authority. It just means that he occasionally talks too much. He's been in Washington since 2004, missed just nine games, and rushed for more than 1,200 yards four times. And he's universally loved by fans. There are better examples of guys who aren't team players.

Meanwhile, Terrell Owens , who can divide a locker room like nobody's business, is working on his third club. So, yeah, relatively speaking, maybe Portis isn't that bad.
Category: NFL
Posted on: June 21, 2009 1:16 pm

Shaelyn Palmer puts her foot down

Carson Palmer’s wife, Shaelyn, can rest easy.

There’s no way her husband, the Bengals’ quarterback, is going to let Chad Ochocinco, the team’s star wide receiver, crash at their Southern California home in July while the two work out together. Three’s company? Hardly.

Carson said Shaelyn got either a text message or e-mail from a friend, saying Ochocinco planned to stay with the Palmers in the days leading up to training camp. Shaelyn gave birth to twins — a boy and a girl — on Jan. 20.

“As soon as I walked in the door from work the other day, she just gave me that look,” Palmer said. “I’m like, ‘Whoa, calm down. It’s media stuff. It’s Chad being Chad.’

“I told her, ‘Don’t worry. I haven’t made any commitments to having to clear out the boxes in the (spare) room to make a bed for him. Don’t worry about that. It’s not going to happen.’ ”

Undeterred, Ochocinco keeps insisting he’s staying with the Palmers.

“No,” Carson said. “I just told him that unless he’s picking up my mortgage for the month of July and August, he can’t stay. He’s not living for free. I don’t need another kid around the house.”

A year ago, Ochocinco arrived at minicamp to a national media circus. He didn’t speak. When 2009 minicamp opened on Thursday, June 18, Chad wouldn’t shut up.

“I’m happy he’s here with the energy he’s bringing, the enthusiasm he’s bringing and the excitement,” Palmer said. “Because it’s all funneled and channeled in the right direction.

“He’s been to five Pro Bowls. He’s still able and capable of playing at that level. It may not have been there last year, but he’s back to that form, to that shape, that he was in previous years.”

Category: NFL
Tags: Bengals
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