Brandon Marshall penalized for flipping ball to ex-teammate

It's safe to say that so far, the marriage between receiver Brandon Marshall(notes) and the Miami Dolphins hasn't worked out to anyone's expectations. When the Fins traded 2010 and 2011 second-round draft picks to the Denver Broncos for the rights to sign Marshall to a five-year, $47.3 million contract in April, they probably expected better than 58 catches for 693 yards and just one touchdown, not to mention a catch rate of 59 percent, down from 66 percent last year.

[Photos: See more of Dolphins wide receiver Brandon Marshall]

Of course, in Denver, Marshall was catching passes from Jay Cutler(notes) and Kyle Orton(notes) -- now, he's on an offense down to third-string quarterback Tyler Thigpen(notes), who could probably get some things done if his injury-depleted offensive line could pass-protect at all.

In Thursday night's Dolphins-Bears matchup, which the Dolphins lost, 16-0, Marshall was also busted for a taunting penalty after catching a pass with 10:16 left in the first half. He took a quick hitch pass from Thigpen took the ball upfield for a 16-yard gain, was pushed out of bounds by Brian Urlacher(notes) ... and then did this:

Yep, Marshall flipped the ball to Cutler, his old teammate, who may have been flipping Marshall some smack talk after the play was over. Marshall picked up a 15-yard taunting penalty for his efforts (his second goofy flag in two weeks; he threw a caught ball into the stands against the Tennessee Titans last Sunday), which basically wiped out the play. He negated another play with an illegal block, dropped two passes (that's been a problem for him all season), and left the game with a hamstring injury later in the second quarter.

There's no news on his return for Miami's game against the Oakland Raiders next Sunday, but at this point, the Dolphins are working through enough issues right now. One would think that they could sign a guy off the street to provide net negative results without all the ancillary drama.

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