Term: 1 year
Base salary: $850,000
Signing bonus: $150,000
Salary cap charge: $1 million
The 6-foot-2 Freeny projects as a possible core special teams player, and this deal is reflective of that. As a restricted free agent, the Dolphins could have tendered him at the lowest level at around $1.5 million but elected not to do so and made him an unrestricted free agent. The Patriots were active in targeting players who fell into this category, signing Freeny, cornerback Chimdi Chekwa and running back Travaris Cadet after they weren't tendered.
Specific to Freeny's skill set, some of his special teams snaps were watched from the 2014 season-opener against the Patriots. He showed up on kickoff coverage, kickoff return, punt coverage and punt return units. His size stands out (254 pounds). He usually isn't the first player down the field in coverage (speed isn't his game), but he's physical. Freeny's tackle on kickoff returner Patrick Chung (second quarter, 2:00 remaining) was a good example of what he might bring; he wasn't part of the first wave of pursuit but fought off an initial double-team block by James Develin and Tavon Wilson, used his hands and arm length to shed and ultimately make the tackle.
A player like former Patriots linebacker Matt Chatham comes to mind as a possible comparison.