The Miami Dolphins say that Christian Wilkins is a priority but what if the two sides can’t see eye to eye and Wilkins leaves?
The Dolphins would be in a bit of a bind as they would lose one of their best interior defensive linemen, not just on the roster now but let’s be realistic, Wilkins is a top 10 to top 15 Dolphins DT in history.
Wilkins is playing on his 5th-year option this year and after the Jeffery Simmons extension by the Titans, $94 million over 4 years, Wilkins is again on the tips of tongues as it relates to his own extension.
If Wilkins were to leave, the Dolphins would have options. They may not be good but they would be cheaper.
- Raekwon Davis – Davis is not going to cost much and is still learning the ropes of the NFL. The Dolphins like his versatility and he has been reliable as part of the Dolphins’ DT rotation. He will be a free agent after the 2023 season and can only be protected should the Dolphins use a tag to keep him.
- Zach Sieler – Sieler, like Davis will hit the market after this season. He will be nowhere near as expensive as Wilkins but will likely get more money than Davis. For the price of Wilkins’ contract, Miami could sign both Sieler and Davis and still have money left over. That is something to think about when it comes to managing the roster.
- Mazi Smith – Michigan – The Dolphins are drafting at 51 and Smith is likely going to be gone by the time Miami is on the board but some mock drafts have him sliding and if this big physical defensive tackle slides within in a few picks, the Dolphins could jump.
One thing that has helped Smith’s stock is the uncertainty over Georgia DT Jalen Carter who is being pulled off several boards due to an off-field incident that resulted in two deaths.
- Bryan Bresee – Clemson – Much like Smith, the Dolphins’ future could be in the draft and while many fans are focusing on running back, tight end, and offensive line, a player like Bresee can’t be summarily passed over without at least giving it some thought.
While the Dolphins can’t be certain about what the future free agent market will hold, they can bet on two things to be true. One, it will be more expensive year to year, and two, they have to decide on the futures of all three of their own FAs before they make a move for another one.
In Miami’s case, it is all about Christian Wilkins right now but he is the tip of an iceberg that is much bigger below. The Dolphins core of their defense starts on the front and keeping it all together should be a priority.