The Miami Dolphins visited with free agent running back Arian Foster shortly after he was released by the Houston Texans. The four-time Pro Bowl running back, including as recently as 2014, is recovering from an Achilles tendon tear that ended his 2015 season after just four games - an injury sustained in Miami against the Dolphins.
He ran for just 163 yards on 63 carries during those four games, giving him an average of just 2.6 yards per attempt, well below his career average of 4.5 yards per attempt and his 2014 performance of 4.8 yards per carry. He tallied one touchdown on the year rushing, plus another two receiving before his injury. Running backs coming back from Achilles injuries are always a risk.
Add in that Foster is approaching his 30th birthday, and the risk gets even greater.
The Dolphins are still considered a possible landing place for Foster. The team is heading into the season with second-year runner Jay Ajayi as the lead back, with rookie Kenyan Drake, and veterans Damien Williams, Daniel Thomas, and Isaiah Pead battling for the rest of the depth chart. CBS Sports' Sean Wagner McGough describes the Dolphins as a place that "still make(s) sense" for Foster.
The Dolphins, and the other 30 teams (assuming Houston will not re-sign him) around the league, have some time to decide on what they want to do in regards to potentially adding Foster. In an interview with ABC13 in Houston, Foster said on Tuesday, "I probably need another month to get where I am the person everyone is used to seeing. I can definitely play but I need another month to be where I want to be and be at that pro-bowl level I can be at."
Miami has the salary cap space to make a signing happen, listed as still having just under $17 million in space according to the NFL Players Association. A one-year, "prove it" type of deal could be the best route for Miami, and may be about the best Foster can expect to sign this year.
Should Miami still pursue Foster? Will he be the same Foster he was in 2014, or will age and the Achilles tear catch up to him?