Feb 20, 2014; Indianapolis, IN, USA; Miami Dolphins general manager Dennis Hickey speaks during a press conference during the 2014 NFL Combine at Lucas Oil Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports

Grading Free Agency


Grading Free Agency

Re signing Brent Grimes: A+

Was this even a question? No real need to elaborate.

Signing Louis Delmas: B

This is a smart sign. I wrote earlier about how I was concerned Miami was going to drop $9 million a year on a safety in Jairus Byrd. Well, they didn’t and instead New Orleans did. That being said, I’m not sold that he’s that significant of an improvement over Chris Clemons. But, hey, we’ll see.

Releasing Dimitri Patterson: B+

When he was on the field, Patterson was great. The key to that sentence is “when he was on the field” and the reality is that it wasn’t enough. He had a $5 million cap number and it was too much for what Miami got last season.

OT Branden Albert: A-

Did I want Miami to drop $46 million on Albert? No, but was it necessary? Yes. He’s a probowl left tackle and it was so badly needed, it is what it is. And hey, now we have two offensive linemen! Wohoo! Very good signing.

DT Earl Mitchell: B/B+

First of all, Mitchell is 26, so that’s a huge plus. Additionally, the deal is just 4 years $16 million, solid numbers all around. Here’s to hoping he can fill Paul Soliai’s shoes and work well with returning players, Jared Odrick and Randy Starks.

Trading Jonathan Martin: A+

All to the points to Dennis Hickey. All the points.

Resigning Randy Starks: A

2 years, $12 million is totally reasonable. Starks is a two time pro-bowler and will provide a good anchor to the Mitchell-Odrick rotation.

Signing Cortland Finnegan: C+

Umm what? He’s got an attitude and doesn’t strike me as a “Philbin guy,” but I guess that he’ll have to become one. He’s less than a year younger than Grimes, so both can provide a veteran presence to Will Davis and Jamar Taylor. I just can’t believe Miami went this direction.

Signing Shelley Smith: A-

A guard was badly needed there’s now way to badly look at this deal. The question is, is he better than what Miami currently has on its roster?

Grade (thus far): B+

A very admirable start for Dennis Hickey and he’s not overpaying for the talent either. Let’s see if he can carry the success through the draft and into the season.

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