The NFL calendar for the 2016-2017 season is down to just the Super Bowl before everything is focused fully on preparing for the 2017-2018 league year. While February will include the Scouting Combine, the month will be primarily focused on getting ready for free agency, which will begin on March 9, when the new league year officially starts. Between now and then, the Miami Dolphins, and all 31 other franchises, have to make decisions on their own players with expiring contracts. Will they re-sign them? Use the franchise or transition tag on them? Or will they allow them to test free agency and potentially sign with a new team?
The Dolphins have 20 players with expiring contracts, spread across the unrestricted, restricted, or exclusive rights free agent categories. Throughout the next several weeks, we will be asking for your input into what Miami should do with each of those pending free agents. We will break down the history of the player, the player’s 2016 season, contract that is set to expire, the estimated franchise tag value, and ask for your vote on what decision the team should make.
Today, we take a look at safety Bacarri Rambo.
Rambo began his NFL career as a 2013 sixth-round draft choice by the Washington Redskins, coming out of the University of Georgia. He just over a year with the club before being waived during the 2014 season. A month after he was waived, the Buffalo Bills signed Rambo, who stayed with the team through the 2015 season. He recorded 104 tackles, two sacks, three interceptions, eight passes defensed, two forced fumbles, and a fumble recovery in his first four years in the league. He started 11 times in his 32 appearances during those seasons.
Miami added Rambo to their roster late in October 2016, adding depth to the secondary following a season-ending shoulder injury to Pro Bowl strong safety Reshad Jones and leg injuries to starting free safety Isa Abdul-Quddus. Rambo would start five games, appearing in four more, splitting playing time with Michael Thomas until both Rambo and Thomas would be forced to playing full-time when Abdul-Quddus missed games at the end of the season. Rambo recorded 39 tackles, with one interception, and three passes defensed for Miami.
Rambo’s expiring contract is a one-year, $675,000 deal. Due to prorating the deal for the missed start of the season, Rambo’s salary cap number for 2016 was $397,059 (via overthecap.com).
A safety franchise tag will probably be around $12 million for one season.
The Phinsider thoughts
Rambo was a critical addition for the Dolphins, who not only had to use him as emergency depth for in game, he had to become a starter for the team. It is unusual to find an in-season injury replacement who can come in, learn the system, and become a key member of a defense, but that is exactly what Rambo did this year. Miami should see Jones and Abdul-Quddus return as the starting safeties next season, so any re-signing of Rambo would be to continue with him as a depth option. That move would probably make sense.
What should the Dolphins do with Rambo? Vote below and feel free to discuss in the comments.