Sanders finished the season making 81.3% of his field goals and a career-low 93.2% of his extra-point attempts. The kicker was six-for-six on his final attempts in Week 18 and the wild-card round, including a field goal that got the team into the playoffs.
While he finished strong, the 27-year-old still didn’t have the consistency, especially from distance, that a top kicker in the league would.
Sanders’ current contract pays him an average annual value of $4.4 million per season which is the 10th most for any kicker in the league, according to Over the Cap.
At this point, the Dolphins haven’t even brought in competition for Sanders’ job, which is honestly shocking. Veterans Brett Maher, Robbie Gould, Mason Crosby, Randy Bullock and Ryan Succop are all available to be signed as free agents. Every single one of them hit a higher percentage of their field goals than Sanders did in 2022.
There’s a bit of a question about how releasing Sanders before the start of the season would affect the salary cap. Spotrac says they can get out of the deal this offseason with no dead cap hit, while Over the Cap states that the Dolphins would be stuck with $2.88 million in dead cap.
Either way, Miami would be best suited to at least have another kicker in for their remaining organized team activities, minicamp and training camp. If they don’t plan on replacing Sanders, at the very least, the competition could push him to be the best version of himself to win the job.