|Source: Dolphins to release Zach Thomas|
|Written by Admin|
|Thursday, 14 February 2008 10:06|
Thomas was told of the team's decision Thursday, a person close to the player said on condition of anonymity because the Dolphins have not announced anything.
The decision was first reported on local newspaper Web sites. The Dolphins declined comment.
The 34-year-old Thomas missed most of last season because of concussions and migraines and was placed on injured reserve against his wishes in December because of nagging migraines, an aftereffect of an Oct. 21 car crash.
The move is the second major salary slash this week by the Dolphins, who went 1-15 last season and subsequently brought in Bill Parcells to lead the team's rebuilding project.
n, wide receiver Marty Booker and seven other players. Thomas was slated to make just over $5.6 million in base salary this coming season.
Thomas was the 154th player chosen in the 1996 draft, and many observers didn't give the 5-foot-11 player from Texas Tech much chance of making the Miami roster.
From there, he only wound up one of the best linebackers in Dolphins history.
Thomas led the Dolphins in tackles 10 times, is the franchise's all-time leader in that category by a wide margin, and his 168 games is the most by any Miami defensive player.
He was remarkably durable in his first 11 seasons, missing only 13 games, and recorded a career-best 165 tackles in 2006 - an indication he wasn't exactly slowing down.
But Thomas missed two games in September this season because of a concussion, and on Oct. 21, he took another hard shot off the field. Thomas had eight tackles in Miami's 49-28 loss to the New England Patriots, and as he and his wife drove home that day, their vehicle was rear-ended on Florida's Turnpike.
Originally, the Dolphins said Thomas was uninjured in that crash. But he experienced numerous migraines following that wreck, and never got back on the field in 2007.
He was inactive for the next seven games before the Dolphins put him on injured reserve, officially ending his season and sparking widespread speculation that his time with Miami could be drawing to a close.
A week ago, new Dolphins coach Tony Sparano said no decisions had been made about Thomas' status for 2008.
``We're doing what we have to do,'' Sparano said on Feb. 7 when asked about Thomas' future.