On Hard Knocks, HBO won’t be getting Rex Ryan circa 2010 — it will instead be getting Chad Ochocinco circa 2009.
The flamboyant wideout, the star of the Bengals’ stint on the popular training camp show three years ago, has signed a one-year deal with the Dolphins, who’ll open their doors in 2012 to the cameras and the microphones.
Ochocinco broke the news via his “Ochocinco News Network,” an operation that largely was mothballed during Chad’s time with the buttoned-up Patriots.
Terms of the deal are not yet known. Under the so-called “minimum salary benefit,” the Dolphins could pay him a base salary of $925,000 and up to $50,000 in additional compensation at a cap cost to the Dolphins of only $540,000. If so, that would be only $25,000 less than the salary he was due to earn this season in New England, which will carry $2 million in dead money this year and $2 million in dead money next year under Ochocinco’s name.
Of course, unless the Dolphins have guaranteed all or part of the pay, Chad will have to make the cut from 90 to 53 in order to get the money. Even if he doesn’t, he’ll help HBO and NFL Films make plenty of it in the coming weeks.
And the Dolphins now have someone who’ll soak up some of the attention that otherwise would have gone to other players and coaches who may have been uncomfortable with it.
UPDATE 9:08 p.m. ET: The Dolphins apparently opted not to use the minimum salary benefit. Per a source with knowledge of the situation, Ochocinco’s deal has a “multi-million-dollar incentive package.”