Dolphins Plan to Re-sign Charles Clay


With the 2014 NFL season behind the Miami Dolphins and 2015 NFL free agency approaching, speculation surrounds several Miami Dolphins and their future with the team.

One vital piece to the Dolphins’ offense over the course of the past few years is tight end Charles Clay, who is entering the 2015 offseason as a free agent. Clay signed a four-year/$2,152,000 contract with the Dolphins in 2011, including a $112,000 guaranteed signing bonus (via Rotoworld). Clay was drafted by the Dolphins with their sixth round pick in the 2011 NFL draft.

Clay has been a pleasant surprise for the Dolphins including a breakout season in 2013, a season that consisted of 69 receptions and 6 touchdowns. Clay proved he was a reliable target for Ryan Tannehill and showed he had the ability to make big plays, earning himself the nickname Big Play Clay.

In 2014 Clay’s numbers slightly decreased compared to a year before, but still made an impact in the league totaling 58 receptions, good for 12th best out of tight ends. Clay contributed these numbers despite having a season-long knee injury.

With his recent success it is no surprise Clay will likely earn a rich contract in 2015. Last season the Dolphins saw valuable contributions from backup tight end Dion Sims, who was 34th in the NFL in receptions by a tight end last season.

With production and potential from two players on the Dolphins roster, they are faced with a big decision this offseason regarding Clay and his potential free agent status.

Barry Jackson of the Miami Herald recently reported the Dolphins may be looking to reach a contract with Clay, despite their vagueness with other players.

"“Though the Dolphins have been non-committal with several players, they privately indicated they want to re-sign free agent tight end Charles Clay. An offer is expected in the coming weeks. Tight end is one position the Dolphins feel good about, with Clay and Dion Sims.”–Barry Jackson, the Miami Herald."

The thought of the Dolphins having two young tight ends with loaded potential is enticing as a Dolphins fan. But will the Miami Dolphins be able to reach an affordable deal with the tight end? And if they don’t where could Clay potentially land?

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If the Dolphins don’t reach a deal with Charles Clay (I believe they will) here are a few potential teams who could pursue Clay:

Seattle Seahawks- A team that has a huge offseason approaching, loaded with difficult decisions could be in the running for a tight end. The tight end position was a high priority position heading into the 2014 season that the Seahawks looked to fix, but couldn’t get anything done. Second year player Luke Willson took over the starting tight end position, contributing 22 receptions and three touchdowns. If the Seahawks don’t fix the tight end position in the draft and Charles Clay hits the free agency market, Charles Clay could be an intriguing weapon for Russell Wilson.

Atlanta Falcons- Since the Tony Gonzalez era ended in Atlanta, the Falcons have struggled to find someone to fill his legacy. Levine Tollolo and Bear Pascoe attempted to fill the spot for the Falcons, as Tollolo caught 31 passes and two touchdowns in 2014, calling for a change at the position in 2015. If Clay hits the free agency market in 2015, he could be a great fit for the Atlanta Falcons and contribute to an already stellar passing offense.

New York Jets- The New York Jets have been in the market for a better passing game over the past few seasons, with the emphasis being on quarterbacks. With new head coach Todd Bowles taking over the team in 2015, he will likely search for weapons for Geno Smith. A young-talented tight end like Charles Clay may be exactly what the Jets are looking for. Last season four-year player Jeff Cumberland started 14 games for the Jets at tight end, accumulating 23 receptions for only three touchdowns, an aspect Jets’ fans would like to see improve in 2015. If Clay his the market in 2015, will we see Todd Bowles and the Jets make a move on the former Dolphins’ tight end?

Where do you see tight end Charles Clay landing this summer?