Miami Dolphins waive starting LB Rey Maualuga after arrest

Rey Maualuga’s brief time with the Dolphins has ended. (Allen Eyestone/The Post)

DAVIE–The Dolphins waived linebacker Rey Maualuga after he was arrested this morning.

Miami-Dade County lists the charge as battery, which was first reported by Pro Football Talk. The police file on his arrest had him booked at 12:46 p.m. today and has his bond at $1,500.

Booking mug shot of Reynold Maualuga. (Miami-Dade County)

Per the police report, the victim alleged that Maualuga grabbed him by the throat and shoved him after refusing to pay the remaining $40 on his bar tab at Club E11even at 8:22 this morning. Club security immediately called Miami police.

Maualuga was then escorted out of the club and detained. When the victim identified him to the officer as his alleged assailant, he was arrested and taken to jail.

The Dolphins hold walk-throughs on Saturdays before the team moves into a hotel for the evening. Players were expected to arrive at the facility this morning around 9 a.m.

Maualuga had been a starter this season after Miami signed him in training camp to shore up a depleted linebacker corps. He had 23 tackles in six games and filled in occasionally at fullback. He was one of the most popular personalities in the locker room with his new teammates and had a good relationship with defensive coordinator Matt Burke, who was his position coach in Cincinnati.

When three linebackers were needed, Miami started Maualuga in the middle with Kiko Alonso and Lawrence Timmons alongside him. That role had previously been filed by Mike Hull, who was demoted to backup when Maualuga got himself in shape to play.

Because of how often the Dolphins were in nickel defense, Maualuga had four games in which he played fewer than 45 percent of the snaps. He was on the field for 31 plays (40.3 percent) against Carolina on Monday.

The Dolphins waived Maualuga at 3 p.m., creating an open roster spot in advance of Sunday’s home game against Tampa Bay. Letting him go left the team with five linebackers. Miami originally signed him to replace second-round pick Raekwon McMillan, who tore his ACL in the opening preseason game.

The Dolphins filled Maualuga’s spot by promoting practice squad running back De’Veon Smith to the active roster. Smith is an undrafted rookie from Michigan who has been with the team since April. He rushed for 846 yards and 10 touchdowns last year.

Practice squad linebacker Neville Hewitt, who played all 16 games and had five starts for Miami last season, is a candidate to be signed if Miami determines it needs help at the position.

Maualuga has had off-field trouble dating back to his time at Southern California, where he was arrested on a misdemeanor battery charge for getting into a fight in 2005 and entered Alcoholics Anonymous as part of his court settlement. He was also arrested for DUI in Kentucky in 2010 while playing for the Bengals.

His latest incident continues a frustrating run of bad behavior for the Dolphins this year. They suspended Lawrence Timmons after he deserted the team the day before the season opener, and offensive line coach Chris Foerster was forced to resign after a video surfaced showing him snorting a white powder.

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