With the offseason under way, NFL teams are turning their attention to the upcoming free agency period and the 2014 NFL Draft. However, there's another step in the process that cannot be missed - re-signing their own players. For the Miami Dolphins, there are plenty of options this year when it comes to re-signing. Who should the Dolphins look to bring back next year? We asked you that question.
After over 1,000 responses, we now take a look at your answers. We will use them to build a "big board" of soon-to-be free agents that you feel need to be re-signed, starting with the players seen as the highest priority and working our way down to the least critical.
None of the results are all that surprising. Brent Grimes and Paul Soliai are clearly the "must re-sign" for the Dolphins. After that, Bryant McKinnie, Chris Clemons, Randy Starks, Nolan Carroll, Dustin Keller, and Armon Binns are seen as "would like to have back" candidates. Richie Incognito, John Jerry, Will Yeatman, Pat Devlin, and Marlon Moore are the next tier, a kind of indifferent section of the board. And, finally, Austin Spitler, Danny Watkins, Jonathan Freeny, Tyson Clabo, R.J. Stanford, and Chris Owens all fall to the bottom of the list, making them the players that you don't see returning to the Dolphins in 2014.
We also asked you, if you felt so inclined, to include comments on your submission, telling us why you voted the way you did. Here are some of those (all bullets are as submitted, without editing):
- All the hype has been placed on our Defensive frontline and Brent Grimes. That being said, Grimes makes the cut while the other two do not simply for cap reasons.
McKinney wants to finish his career here in Miami. I say we let him. Even if we draft our LT of the future, he makes it so we do not have to succumb to the pressures of starting him too early. The desire to play here makes me think he will work hard in the offseason.
- Between Sollai and Starks we kept the one that gives us the biggest home town discount and let the other go where ever they want!
- Binns: has flashed; will be cheap; should see if he conts to flash
Grimes: rare shutdown corner
Carroll: I'd keep him for the right price. let's be honest, last season Carroll finally turned the corner. I'd rather not get of a player we have developed just as he is becoming a good player.
Clemons: not actually sure about him. Steady safety, but not a play making safety. I'd definitely test the waters at safety if a play making safety is out there. I like Clemons, but at the right price.
McKinnie: Loved his leadership, and knowledge. For instance he coached up Brenner during the Pats game x2. OL seemed to get better (relative term of course Dolphins fans).
Soliai: hard to find a dominant NT/DT. I know Soliai had somewhat of an off year, but it will be almost impossible to replace him. It's like the Ravens getting rid of Ngata.
Moore: special teams beast. love what he brings to the team. I loved when MIA brought him back midseason.
Spitler: good special teams player, and will be cheap.
*Starks: I'd love to keep him, but it seems it is either Soliai or Starks.
- Brent Grimes and Paul Soliai are "must" signings.
Randy Starks, Nolan Carroll, will be too expensive for the value they bring.
Tyson Clabo, John Jerry, Bryant McKinnie, Marlon Moore and RJ Stanford are not starters on Super Bowl contenders.
Dustin Keller, Armon Binns, Pat Devlin, Danny Watkins and Will Yeatman are affordable options with potential.
- Brent grimes needs resigned period one of the top corners in this league . Paul is a very huge part to the defensive line that would be nearly impossible to replace ! Signing only two would still allow for some cap room to help grimes out in secondary and add pieces in the trenches espeacially offensive line ! And maybe a running back !
- Clemons played well this season. Devlin should eventually be the back up QB. Grimes is a must. Jerry should be able to be had cheap. McKinnie could be a stop gap at LT. Soliai could be signed for hometown discount. I think Richie should be resigned, but it is not going to happen!
- Grimes - this shouldn't need explaining!
Solia - See comment for Grimes.
McKinnie - Not perfect but a great 1 year (2, maybe?) stop-gap. His experience is needed on an offense getting younger and clearly lacking in leadership.
Finally - in a draft so rich at the so called skill positions, it would be a disaster for the dolphins to focus early on perceived need (OL/DL, arguably). BPA on O, please. Use FA to shore OL up, use draft to weaponize the O. Wallace will be better next year; imagine how much more with a top end WR drafted rather than settling with some of the average talent on the roster? Clay, with a top TE pick (thinking the notre dame lad at 2/3).
I say this because Phily's scheme, hopefully coming to Miami with Lazor, is, in the end, just scheme. Remember the array of talent the scheme utilised in Phily. No scheme however good can flourish without a broad range of weapons. We don't have them. still.
- Grimes and Soliai are my only for sures. I wouldn't mind Binns and even Carroll. I also voted for Devlin (possibly releasing Moore and his 4Mil) and Moore on the cheap for his ST value. I honestly don't want any of our O-line free agents back.
- I'm just giving another shot to keller
- I'll let D. Patterson walk & keep both of the DT's We need the veteran presence in the team.
- It's a shame they'll get rid of Richie Incognito...I think he got a bad rap...he's a hard worker & I don't think he dished out anything that wasn't directed right back at him... It was all in fun & it got out of hand, but Martin's the one that should move on...
- Nolan Carroll shouldnt have been signed
- Personally I think the Dolphins should sign Grimes, Soliai, and Keller and I would let the rest walk. The real issue is filling the holes in the roster with guys with more talent.
- Soliai is the only Dolphin who is not easily replaceable.