Miami Dolphins Make In House Moves Day 1 Of FA


The Miami Dolphins did not make a major signing to kick-off the start of the 2015 NFL free agency period as everyone expected. The moves they did make however were in house and needed to possibly add that big name signing.

The Dolphins started their day off re-signing linebacker Kelvin Sheppard and the tendered defensive end Derrick Shelby to a 2nd round tender worth just over $2.5 million for the season. Miami then restructured the contract of Brandon Fields to keep their top 10 punter on the roster.

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Miami wrapped up their retentions by keeping safety Michael Thomas before the roster purge began.

Offensive guard Shelley Smith was waived and later linebacker Phillip Wheeler was released officially. The move on Wheeler has yet to be classified but it appears that it will be a June 1st designation. The Dolphins will save $3 million if it’s a J-1 release as opposed to only $250k if it’s a release now.

There are still no answers on Randy Starks future or the future of Mike Wallace. Dannell Ellerbe is still being shopped as well but there is no immediate hurry on Ellerbe as he will almost assuredly be a J-1 cut as well. Starks will save the Dolphins $5 million in cap space when he is released. It has been reported that Starks’ future hinges on the Ndamukong Suh deal. The team apparently will retain DT Earl Mitchell who will count $4.5 million in cap space this year. Releasing Mitchell would cost the Dolphins nothing. Starks will carry $1 million in dead money.

Former Dolphins found homes today as well. Jared Odrick landed in Jacksonville on an $8.5 million a year deal with over $20 million guaranteed. Brian Hartline is now a Cleveland Brown, and Brandon Gibson has joined the Patriots for a one year deal.

Free agency is only in the wee hours of it’s birth for 2015 but already moves have been made around the league. Trades between the Bills and Eagles for LeSean McCoy became official as did the Brandon Marshall to the Jets trade. The NFL was shocked however when the Saints traded TE Jimmy Graham to the Seahawks. The Eagles quickly followed with word they had traded QB Nick Foles to the St. Louis Rams for Sam Bradford.

It’s been a very busy three hours. We will have a lot more on free agency over the next couple of days as the roster begins to take it’s new early shape.