Recent DT NFL contracts are going to make it hard for Miami Dolphins to retain Wilkins
By Brian Miller
Christian Wilkins is a big part of the Miami Dolphins defense and if Chris Grier and company don't get a new contract for him soon, they may end not having him on the roster beyond this year.
Two contracts already his off-season around the league is upping the price for defensive tackles. Wilkins who is playing on his 5th year option this year could still be tagged next season but that will only delay the inevitable...let him him the free agent market or pay him a lot more in two years than you could have had him for earlier this year.
The Dolphins may not be dragging their feet. It is very possible that Wilkins' agents knew what the going rate was going to be and they are remaining steadfast in their convictions of what they want. The problem is other deals are shaping this market and if they continue to go up, which they will, Miami could be in a position to let Wilkins walk.
The latest contract is a 5-year $90 million deal for Dexter Lawrence that includes $60 million in guaranteed money. Lawrence is an All-Pro but Wilkins' contract will still build off that cap and come in lower.
Wilkins is likely looking at a $70 million deal with around $50 guaranteed but if another big contract is done for a non-All-Pro, non-Pro Bowl DT, Wilkins will build off that contract upwards instead.
The best course of action for the Dolphins is to simply decide if Wilkins is in the team's future plans. There is little to no grey area anymore. If he is, pay him, if he isn't try and trade him. Wilkins is the heart and soul of the defense. He controls the front line and is an exemplary player but so far, he isn't being paid as such.
Chris Grier tends to put a number in his head and doesn't stray from it but he is going to have to with Wilkins whether he likes it or not. The Dolphins say they are in contact with Wilkins' side but nothing has been done yet. With two big DT contracts already done, the Dolphins should think about getting a move on it or risk losing him or paying a lot more for him.