5 Miami Dolphins free agents that should be a priority for Chris Grier and are not expensive

Aug 20, 2022; Miami Gardens, Florida, USA; Miami Dolphins cornerback Nik Needham (40) tips the ball
Aug 20, 2022; Miami Gardens, Florida, USA; Miami Dolphins cornerback Nik Needham (40) tips the ball / Rich Storry-USA TODAY Sports
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With the holes in the Miami Dolphins' secondary and the release of Xavien Howard, there is more need to re-sign FAs before they hit the market.

Nik Needham

Needham has spent five seasons with the Dolphins and his time here has seen a lot of ups and downs. In 2019, the Dolphins' secondary was so depleted by injury that as a rookie, Needham started 11 of the 12 games he played in.

That dropped to six starts in 2020 and five in 2021 and in 2022 but in 2021 he played in all 17 games. 2022 began the fall due to injury. He missed all but six games after going down early in the season and in 2023 he was still trying to get back to his former playing self.

Last year he appeared in 10 games but had no starts. This season, he isn't likely to start much either but with uncertainty with Cam Smith, a hole where Howard used to play, and a lack of any real quality depth on the roster at the position, Needham will have a good chance to compete for a larger role under Anthony Weaver.

Now a year removed from his injury, Needham can hit the offseason practice sessions with the same drive he did his rookie year. He may not be a perfect option but he is at least a pretty good one that the Dolphins can rely on. With the changes on defense, maybe Needham will take a big step forward. To that, he needs to be re-signed.

Truth be told, the Dolphins need a player like Needham who isn't afraid to hit and can play inside and out wherever he is needed. He may not 100% be a starter but he can fill in when needed and play at a consistent level when he his healthy.

Needham could receive mild interest in free agency but I would project him to be pursued far more after the initial week of the market opening.