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Dolphins strike a megadeal; team nabs free agent cornerback Byron Jones

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The Miami Dolphins are making waves this free agency period.

Dallas Cowboys v Philadelphia Eagles Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images

The Miami Dolphins strike again! General manager Chris Grier is making waves in the first day of the legal tampering period, but none bigger than inking the biggest cornerback contract in NFL history with free agent Byron Jones. The Dolphins are making Jones the highest paid at his position just one year after doing the same for his new teammate Xavien Howard.

According to Adam Schefter of ESPN, Jones and the Dolphins will sign a five-year, $82.5 million pact worth $57 million in guarantees. The deal will pay Jones $40 million within the first two years, which follows the team’s recent trend of front-loading contracts to avoid being stuck in bloated deals as players age into the backend of contracts.

Jones, 27, has morphed into one of the league’s top boundary corners after three rough seasons at safety with the Dallas Cowboys. The lockdown defensive back doesn’t have the interception totals of some of his ballhawking counterparts, but that may simply be because opposing quarterbacks tend to avoid him when targeting receivers downfield. Jones has totaled 20 pass defenses over the past two seasons along with 113 total tackles.

With Jones now in the fold, the Dolphins suddenly possess a scary combination of defensive backs. The former Cowboy will be joining Howard, Bobby McCain, Eric Rowe, and the newly acquired Clayton Fejedelem in head coach Brian Flores’ revamped defense. And let’s not forget, the Dolphins still hold a good deal of cap space and 14 draft picks to use come April. Grier, Flores and company aren’t done yet.

Want more Miami Dolphins free agency news and analysis? Follow Justin Hier on Twitter @HierJustin.