After losing out in the Matt Flynn and Peyton Manning sweepstakes, the Dolphins have found a quarterback.
David Garrard, who has been recovering from a herniated disk that he injured last year during training camp, has agreed to terms with the Dolphins, FOXSports.com has learned via text message.
It is a one-year deal, Garrard’s agent, Albert Irby, told Scout.com.
Garrard said he was told he will get an opportunity to compete with last year’s starter, Matt Moore, who passed for 2,497 yards and 16 TDs with nine interceptions as the Dolphins went 6-10.
”It’s going to be a great competition, and I’m all about that,” Garrard told The Associated Press in a phone interview. ”I’m going to do my best to make sure it’s me on opening day.”
It is not known whether the Dolphins will make a play for another quarterback in the NFL draft in April or in free agency. Miami met with free agent quarterback Alex Smith this past weekend.
”They didn’t say for sure they were bringing another guy in, but they said it’s a possibility, whether in the draft or whatever,” Garrard said.
Garrard was cut by the Jaguars last year as rookie Blaine Gabbert was promoted to starting quarterback. The Dolphins courted him after quarterback Chad Henne’s season was ended by a shoulder injury, but Garrard didn’t sign and instead underwent back surgery in October. He said he considered retirement but is now 100 percent and eager to extend his career another year.
”It was taken away from me, and it gave me a great perspective on life and this game,” he said. ”I want to make sure when I leave this game, I do it when I’m ready to go, and there’s never any remorse or thought of ‘could I have done more?”’
Garrard, who has passed for 16,003 and 89 TDs against 54 interceptions in his nine-year career, led the Jaguars to a playoff berth in 2007 and was selected to play in the Pro Bowl in 2009, when he passed for 3,597 yards and 15 TDs.
He apparently impressed the Dolphins with his workout Monday and said he was impressed by new coach Joe Philbin and his staff.
”I just love the vibe,” Garrard said. ”I love everybody’s mission and goal, and the purpose they have and the direction they’re heading.”
Miami safety Yeremiah Bell was told he’ll be released to create cap space, a person familiar with the discussions said. The person confirmed the discussions to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity because the Dolphins hadn’t announced a move.
By cutting the 34-year-old Bell, the Dolphins save more than $4 million in cap space, which could be used in negotiations with Smith.
Bell has played his entire eight-year career with Miami and became a starter in 2006. He made the Pro Bowl in 2009 and led the team in tackles each of the past four seasons.