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The Dolphins are actively trying to get top receiver Brian Hartline under contract for next season and beyond, according to the Miami Herald.
Hartline, who led Miami in catches (74), targets (128) and receiving yards (1,083) in 2012, is scheduled to be an unrestricted free agent when the new league year starts on March 12. According to the Herald, the Dolphins are engaging in "extensive discussions" to get a new deal done before then.
Behind the scenes, the front office has discretely targeted at least two starters—Brian Hartline and Chris Clemons—they hope to lock into contract extensions before the NFL’s new year begins on March 12.
The club has had extensive discussions with Hartline and Clemons about a return in 2013, according to a league source.
Locking up Hartline and drafting or signing a top receiver in free agency would give the Dolphins a better array of passing options for second-year quarterback Ryan Tannehill.
The downside here could be the money needed to get Hartline back in Miami, as the Dolphins probably need to use a significant chunk of change to get a true No. 1 receiver.
Hartline would be a fine No. 2 receiver—with Davone Bess (61 catches, 778 yards) occupying the slot—in an offense that also included someone like Greg Jennings, Mike Wallace or Dwayne Bowe.
As a No. 1 option, Hartline is limited.