Miami Dolphins Free Agency: 5 Possible New CBA Free Agents the Fins Could Sign
The details of the possible new CBA have been leaked.
One key detail of them is the new free agency rule that brings the unrestricted free agent rule back to four years instead of the six years the NFL played under last season.
For those who are confused, an example would be Ronnie Brown. He would have been an unrestricted free agent last year under these new rules, meaning he could sign anywhere he wanted. Instead, he was a restricted free agent and the Dolphins were able to match any offer to him or get compensation in return.
The new free agency rule would do more good than harm for the Dolphins. It opens up new free agents who would have cost a lot to sign as restricted free agents (and the Fins would have had to give up draft picks to sign them).
On the other side, the Dolphins are freeing up roster spots and cap space by not having to keep their restricted free agents.
The Dolphins new unrestricted free agents are going to be Tyler Thigpen, Tony McDaniel and Quentin Moses.
I would not be sad if none of those guys come back. McDaniel was a nice versatile player, but nothing to get too excited about.
Instead, the Dolphins can focus on the following new free agents who could fill needs or provide depth.
KR/WR Brad Smith
Nick Laham/Getty Images
The Dolphins probably do not need him as a WR as much as they need him as a KR/PR.
The Dolphins have possible KR/PR guys on the roster in Davone Bess, Edmund Gates and Kory Sheets.
However, I would like to see Bess focus on his WR duties only. Gates is a rookie, so it is risky to put an unproven player back to return kicks. Sheets is an outside shot to make the roster.
Smith is a proven KR, who has gotten better with the more opportunities he has been given.
Last season Smith averaged 28.6 yards per KR and took two returns back for TDs. The Dolphins as a team only averaged 21.4 yards per KR and did not have any TDs.
Smith also brings the ability to add some trick plays to the offense. He played QB in college so he has an arm (he is 4-7 passing with a TD in his NFL career).
He has also run some Wildcat and played WR.
Smith may not fill a pressing need, but he could be a cheaply priced offensive weapon to add to the fold.
FS Eric Weddle
Stephen Dunn/Getty Images
I like Chris Clemons, and I want Clemons to be the Dolphins starting FS. He plays hard and makes some big hits.
However, he has some major lapses in coverage, and that is something that cannot be tolerated from a FS.
Weddle is a solid all-around safety. He can tackle (he has averaged around 89 tackles a season over his four year career) and is solid in pass coverage (six INTs and 28 pass defensed for his career).
Adding him to the secondary with Yeremiah Bell, Vontae Davis and Sean Smith would make for a complete defensive backfield.
Weddle would allow Bell to play a little more freely because there is a solid veteran presence behind him to prevent big plays.
G/T Marshal Yanda
Larry French/Getty Images
Yanda has 42 starts in his four year NFL career and is very versatile, seeing action at both guard and tackle.
The Dolphins could use some depth at both guard and tackle, so Yanda would fill both needs instantly.
Cory Procter, the Dolphins usual utility OL, is an unrestricted free agent and coming off major knee surgery.
While Procter was always solid for Miami, the injury concerns and the chance to land a good replacement for Vernon Carey, in Yanda, is too good to pass up.
Yanda will cost more than Procter, but as the saying goes, you get what you pay for.
TE Zach Miller
Ezra Shaw/Getty Images
This signing would depend on how the Dolphins plan to use Charles Clay. If Clay is going to mostly be an occasional TE, then the Dolphins will need another TE.
Honestly, in my opinion, I would just release Anthony Fasano all together.
I know the Dolphins just gave Fasano an extension just last season, but he just does not really do anything well.
Fasano is poor in run blocking and lacks open field speed.
Miller is not the best blocker in his own right, but he makes up for it in his consistency as a playmaker and route-runner.
Miller has led the Raiders in receiving yards the last three seasons, which is not saying a lot for the Raiders but it is still impressive considering he never had much of a QB throwing to him.
I would much rather invest my money in Miller than Fasano.
G/T Harvey Dahl
Al Bello/Getty Images
After a rocky start to his career in San Francisco, which included a dispute with Coach Mike Singletary on the sidelines that was caught on camera, Dahl went to Atlanta and turned his career around. He has started every game he has played in the last three seasons.
He has paved the way for RB Micheal Turner and protected QB Matt Ryan.
The Dolphins need a good starting right guard and Dahl could fill that void.
The Fins might have to shell out some serious cash for him, but he would be well worth it and solidify what was a revolving door for the Dolphins last season.