McKinney Restructures His Contract

The Miami Dolphins linebacker was acquired this offseason in a trade with Houston

Along with signing two veterans Friday, the Dolphins also took care of some other business when they restructured the contract of inside linebacker Benardrick McKinney.

The move is listed on the transactions section of the team website.

While no details of the restructure have surfaced, logic dictates that it was done to free up some cap space as the Dolphins prepare to head to training camp.

To set the record straight about the way the transaction came to light, understand that the Dolphins do not send out press releases when they restructure the contract of a player, which could involve a pay cut or changing the way the contract is set up, but do so in the case of contract extensions, such as was the case when they signed Jerome Baker to a new deal a few weeks back.

For example, the Dolphins did not put out a press release in May 2020 when they restructured the contract of wide receiver Albert Wilson or, more accurately, he accepted a pay cut to remain on the roster.

The Dolphins website doesn't even show that move with Wilson in its transactions section, meaning the McKinney information represents a move toward more transparency — opposite of the idea some suggested that the Dolphins were being "sneaky" about the move.

Additionally, contract extensions or contract restructures also do not appear on the daily NFL transactions list, which is why the new McKinney contract flew under the radar until it was spotted by a Dolphins fan.

McKinney joined the Dolphins this offseason in a trade with the Houston Texans. The Dolphins got McKinney, a second-round pick in 2015, and a seventh-round pick in the 2021 draft in exchange for edge defender Shaq Lawson and a 2021 sixth-round selection.

McKinney joined the Dolphins with three years left on a five-year extension he signed with Houston in 2018. McKinney had a 2021 cap number of $7.2 million prior to the restructure, according to, and there was no dead cap space involve over the final three years of the deal.

The other roster moves the Dolphins made Friday involved signing linebacker Shaquem Griffin and cornerback Cre'von LeBlanc and waived defensive end Nick Coe and long-snapper Rex Sunahara.

RELATED: The Lowdown on LeBlanc


Alain Poupart has covered the Miami Dolphins on a full-time basis since 1989. You can follow him on Twitter at @PoupartNFL. Feel free to submit questions every Friday for the All Dolphins mailbag.