Which NFL salary cap casualties should interest the Dolphins?

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Kyle Crabbs
·2 min read
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The start of free agency is always quite the firestorm for the NFL. After a few weeks of silence on the sports landscape, the opening bell of the league calendar year serves as the league’s return to prominence in sports headlines. And the 2021 edition of free agency will be no different — with potentially even more seismic changes happening across the league as teams dance around the dynamics of a reduced salary cap due to revenue sharing losses.

With the salary cap set at $182.5M, man teams have already started the process of trimming surplus salary and, in some cases, cutting down on starting players who are simply too costly to keep in the picture.

For the Miami Dolphins, this could serve as a catalyst for some extra additions to the roster — in a time in which Miami feels on the cusp of a breakthrough amid their rebuilding process.

Which street free agents (veterans cut from their existing contracts before the terms expired) should Miami be most interested in?

Some names that jump out include:

The challenge, of course, is these players are likely perceived as having plenty left in the tank and finding any of the four as a “bargain buy” is unlikely. Injuries played a hand in the regression we saw from Brown in 2020, whereas Coleman is a victim of signing in Detroit to play for Matt Patricia at a premium dollar amount — just to see Patricia canned and the Lions not willing to pay the rest of his contract. Alexander’s cut was strictly financials based (the Saints started the offseason over $100M over the cap) and the same can presumably be said for Turner, who missed nearly half the season in 2020 with a groin injury and was scheduled to make $11.5M next year.

Miami would undoubtedly welcome upgrades to all four position groups: wide receiver, interior offensive line, nickel cornerback and linebacker.

But do the Dolphins feel any is the unquestioned answer to what ails them at any of the four spots? If so, then you can start to build the case to pursue any of the four for what it would presumably cost to sign them based on their age, recent contributions and past contracts. Miami has plenty of options with standard free agents, too — but those negotiations can’t begin until Monday and the contracts can’t be signed until Wednesday afternoon.