Dolphins Free Agent Follow-Up
We've talked many times this offseason about the Dolphins' free agent haul of 11 veterans, the last being former Dallas Cowboys safety Kavon Frazier.
But what about the Dolphins' own free agents, either those who were restricted or unrestricted free agents or those who became free agents after being let go?
As June was coming to an end, there were 11 players who ended last season on the Dolphins roster who were without a team.
The biggest name on the list is Reshad Jones, the two-time Pro Bowl safety who was released in the offseason after spending 10 seasons with the Dolphins.
One question facing Jones is whether he even wants to continue playing. He turned 32 in February, and has kept a low profile on social media in the offseason with nothing in the way of a declaration that he's ready to come back with a vengeance after ending last season on injured reserve.
Here's another key factor: Jones already has made $56 million since entering the NFL as a fifth-round pick in the 2010 draft, so he should be set for life financially.
Our good friends over at JetsCountry suggested Jones might be a good fit for Adam Gase if New York winds up trading disgruntled safety Jamal Adams, so maybe that's something worth watching.
Another Dolphins free agent is cornerback Aqib Talib, though he was only a Dolphin in name last year because he was on IR last year when he came over in a trade that got Miami a fifth-round pick in exchange for allowing the Rams to dump his salary and he remained on IR until the end of the season.
Talib is 34 and has career earning of almost $68 million, so he's another player who should be set for life financially.
The list of Dolphins free agents includes four players who were unrestricted free agents: Talib, safety Walt Aikens, tackle J'Marcus Webb and tight end Clive Walford; two non-tendered restricted free agents: linebackers Deon Lacey and Chase Allen, who spent all of last year on IR after being waived-injured; and five "street" free agents who were released: Jones, center Daniel Kilgore, linebacker Mike Hull, running back De'Lance Turner and long-snapper Taybor Pepper.
Because he's been a very good special teams player since he entered the NFL in 2014 and because he's not that expensive ($1.4 million base salary in 2019), Aikens is perhaps the most surprising name on the list of players looking for a team.
There could be two factors at play here.
One, Aikens did not travel to New York for the game against the Giants because he violated team rules, though the infraction was benign enough that he was reinstated the following week against the Bengals.
Perhaps most significant is the fact that Aikens sustained a lower-leg injury in the season finale against the Patriots, which of course led to Ryan Fitzpatrick giving him a piggyback ride off the field after the Dolphins' stunning 27-24 victory.
Aikens didn't post much about football, either, in the offseason, though he did use Instagram to show off the house he bought himself in North Carolina.
Before the start of the free agency signing period, the Dolphins re-signed potential UFA Ricardo Louis, who spent all of last year on injured reserve and they later re-signed restricted free agents Vince Biegel and Matt Haack after extending a qualifying offer to each player. The Dolphins also re-signed safety Adrian Colbert after they initially declined to extend him a qualifying offer as an RFA.
The 11 unrestricted free agents signed by the Dolphins from other teams, along with Frazier, were RB Jordan Howard, G Ereck Flowers, G Ted Karras, DE-LB Emmanuel Ogbah, DE-LB Shaq Lawson, LB Kyle Van Noy, LB Elandon Roberts, LB Kamu Grugier-Hill, CB Byron Jones and S Clayton Fejedelem.