Today is the NFL trade deadline, a magical date on the calendar that comes the Tuesday after Week 8, and usually results in a whole lot of nothing. That said, there are usually a couple of moves that happen, and there are always a ton of rumors and speculation. Who could be on the move from the Miami Dolphins? Who could the Dolphins be looking to bring to South Florida?
Below, we have everything you need to know about today’s trade deadline, as well as some of the potential targets for the Dolphins and the trades from around the league that have already happened.
NFL Trade Deadline 2016
When: Tuesday, November 1, 4pm ET
The Dolphins likely will not be looking to make any major deals this year, in part because they are already down some draft picks for next year and in part because this year is not about winning the Super Bowl, but rather continuing to develop under first-year head coach Adam Gase. That being said, depth could be a factor in a trade if Miami were to make one.
- Cornerback - Miami is probably betting on the healthy returns of Chris Culliver and Xavien Howard to bolster the secondary, but a move for either a starting caliber cornerback or a depth option to be able to fill in, just in case, could make some sense. Given the team’s top reserve cornerback is now a starting safety in Michael Thomas, this would probably be the top place for Miami to look.
- Linebacker - The team’s linebackers have actually been playing better as the year moves along, likely in part to Kiko Alonso settling in as the team’s middle linebacker. The position is one that has been hit hard by injury, both last year and again this year, so it could be an area, even as some of the younger players step up to larger roles this year, the team could consider if they are looking to make a trade.
- Tight end - Another position that has seen injuries this year is the tight end spot for the Dolphins. If starter Jordan Cameron and primary reserve Dion Sims are both going to continue to miss playing time due to their concussions, Miami could look to add a tight end to provide some depth behind MarQuies Gray and Dominique Jones.
Two names seem to come up in rumors as players the team could ship away, though neither is likely to move. Cornerback Byron Maxwell has been playing better as of recently, and he is currently a starter at least until Culliver and Howard are healthy. Plus, his contract does not seem to be one Miami could deal. It does not seem likely that Miami would trade for Maxwell in the offseason, then turn around and deal him during the season unless the deal was an overwhelming one.
Cameron Wake also comes up in many rumors - and to be fair, most of these rumors seem to be from other teams’ reporters looking around the league and trying to find a pass rusher their team could grab. Wake is 34 years old, so reporters seem to think Miami could deal him as he approaches the end of his career, giving him a chance at making a playoff run while giving Miami something in return for their star player. Wake, however, is a fan-favorite and one of the faces of the franchise. Dealing him would be a huge blow to the fans, and to a defensive line that has started playing much better now that Wake is back in the lineup as a starter and regular feature of the unit.
Possible trade block players
Looking around the league, here are some bigger names who could be on the trading block:
Joe Thomas, left tackle - Yes, the Browns have said they are not going to trade Thomas, but there seems to be a lot of smoke around for there not to be at least a little fire here. The idea of a team overpaying for a top-tier left tackle should not be a surprise, and the Browns could get a decent return for Thomas.
Joe Haden, cornerback - Haden has not seemed like the same player over the past couple of years, but he could still be a decent cornerback option if he can stay healthy. The Browns could be a fire-sale team, if they actually want to go that route, but it does not appear they have much interest in doing that.
Sheldon Richardson, defensive tackle - Ian Rapoport has reported that the Jets are shopping Richardson, but it does not appear things are heating up that much. He is not under contract for next year, so any deal would likely need to include a contract extension, which could get expensive and make teams not willing to make the move.
Darren McFadden, running back - Rapoport has also added that the Cowboys could trade McFadden, if the deal were large enough, even though the running back is on the Non-Football Injury list.
Brandon Marshall, wide receiver - I’m not sure this counts as a “rumor” so much as it is a reporter looking around for moves that could help both teams. Sports Illustrated’s Greg Bedard has the Jets potentially sending the Chiefs Marshall in return for a second-round draft pick. Arrowhead Pride’s Joel Thorman does not see it as likely, mostly because the Chiefs have a weird aversion to actually using their receivers. Could Marshall be on the block, however? With his past patter of only lasting 2-4 years with each team, including a four-year run with the Broncos, two years with the Dolphins, and three years with the Bears, Marshall being eight games into his second year with the Jets could signal it is closing in on time for him to move to a new team.
Dolphins trade deadline plans changed
Interesting article from Armando Salguero this morning about how the Dolphins’ trade deadline plans changed because of the last two games. The team winning - and winning in a fashion that seems to say they now have an identity - stopped the team from looking to trade Mario Williams, Byron Maxwell, Andre Branch, and, possibly, Cameron Wake. Salguero adds that the Dolphins are clearly not sellers in this year’s trade deadline, and he could see them become buyers - especially if they are looking at cornerbacks like Haden.
- Knile Davis, running back, from Chiefs to Packers - October 19
- A.J. Derby, tight end, from Patriots to Broncos - October 25
- Kyle Van Noy, linebacker, from Lions to Patriots - October 25
- Jamie Collins, linebacker, from Patriots to Browns - October 31
- Johnthan Banks, cornerback, from Buccaneers to Lions - November 1