The Miami Dolphins ended their offseason program on June 14. Here’s a look at how they fared:
Offseason goals: After their 2017 season was derailed by an injury to starting quarterback Ryan Tannehill, third-year coach Adam Gase sought to change a culture around a team that slipped from making the playoffs in 2016 to finishing with a 6-10 record in 2017. General manager Mike Tannenbaum also had to correct some of his previous contractual mistakes that left Miami over the salary cap entering the offseason.
Move I liked: Trading wide receiver Jarvis Landry to the Cleveland Browns for fourth- and seventh-round picks. The value of wide receiver contracts has steadily increased, especially as the superb 2014 draft class has wrapped up their rookie deals. The $15 million per season Cleveland paid Landry after the trade would not have made sense financially for the Dolphins, and the decision seems to be justified by Landry’s recent comment about Tannehill. “We didn’t really have a good relationship anyway, so I’m not surprised [I was traded],” Landry told the NFL Network.
Move I didn’t like: Signing older players such running back Frank Gore, wide receiver Danny Amendola and guard Josh Sitton. Gore, 35, signed a one-year, $1.15 million deal, while Amendola, 32, signed a two-year, $12 million contract and Sitton, 32, inked a two-year, $13.5 million pact. All three players might still produce on the back ends of their careers for Miami, but it seems fair to question some of Tannenbaum’s financial decisions after his massive spending on Ndamukong Suh (six years, $114 million) in 2015 ultimately did little to change the course of the franchise.
Biggest question still to be answered in training camp: Is Tannehill still the answer at quarterback? This question will linger throughout the season and could have massive implications on how the Dolphins approach the 2019 season and beyond. Tannehill enjoyed his best season in 2016, leading the Dolphins to the playoffs, but his overall resume since being taken in the first round in 2012 leaves some doubts about whether he will remain the future at the position for Miami. Tannehill seems to have fully recovered this spring from a season-ending knee injury, which is a strong first step toward securing his role.
Quotable: “I am not hoping [the culture will improve], I know it’s going to be different. You have some alpha dogs who are not going to accept a lot of the bulls--- that has gone on.” – coach Adam Gase at the NFL owners meetings in March, according to the Miami Herald.
Salary-cap space: $14.9 million (source: NFLPA)
2018 draft picks: DB Minkah Fitzpatrick (first round), TE Mike Gesicki (second round), LB Jerome Baker (third round), TE Durham Smythe (fourth round), RB Kalen Ballage (fourth round), CB Cornell Armstrong (sixth round), LB Quentin Poling (seventh round), K Jason Sanders (seventh round).
Undrafted rookie free agents signed: RB Gregory Howell, OL David Steinmetz, OL Connor Hilland, DL Jamiyus Pittman, DL Anthony Moten, DL Quincy Redmon, DL Claudy Mathieu, LB Cayson Collins, LB Mike McCray, CB Jalen Davis, S Johnathan Alston, K Greg Joseph, LS Lucas Gravelle.
Restricted free agents signed: None.