A breakdown of the initial wave of free agency for the Miami Dolphins.
Overall grade: C-minus. It’s hard to say they kept the balance when their starting center (Mike Pouncey), a 100-catch receiver (Jarvis Landry) and a five-time Pro Bowl selection (Ndamukong Suh) have departed. Coach Adam Gase has talked about a culture change in this roster makeover. But the bottom line is they’ve made the roster slightly older, as they’ll replace some 20-somethings with players who are 30 or older.
Most significant signing: Folks will likely look at wide receivers Albert Wilson and Danny Amendola or even running back Frank Gore because they were the players signed to fill the 112-catch gap left behind when the Dolphins traded Landry to the Browns. But the signing of guard Josh Sitton, a proven player who could help settle things down at an important position, is the answer here. Sitton has played 16 games in a season six times and started at least 12 games in each of the past nine seasons.
Most significant loss: Landry had the biggest numbers, but a player like Suh -- an interior defensive lineman who offers the ability to defend the run and provide pass-rush skills -- is the most difficult to replace. Suh has had some knee issues, including arthroscopic surgery in January of 2017, and some wonder whether those issues will flare up again, but he has started 16 games in each of the past six seasons.
Player they should have signed: Gore certainly gives Gase the veteran presence he wanted both in the offense and locker room. Gore continues to move up the league’s all-time rushing list, but a back such as Orleans Darkwa, who is 26, would have been an economical solution as an early-down runner. Even the 30-year-old DeMarco Murray, who visited the Dolphins before the team signed Gore, would have given them an early-down presence. The Dolphins continue to give the Georgia tandem of Sony Michel and Nick Chubb a long look in their draft preparations. Miami might like the potential of Gore and Kenyan Drake, but needs a little more physicality at the position.
What’s next: The Dolphins are still thin at tight end, linebacker and in the middle of the defensive line. Former Broncos/Patriots tight end A.J. Derby and MarQueis Gray are the front-line options at tight end at the moment.