The Miami Dolphins chose a hard reset after a 7-9 record in 2018. The franchise began from scratch and the first metaphorical building block was selecting Christian Wilkins with the No. 13 over pick in the 2019 draft.
Wilkins, four years and 290 tackles later, has one year left on his rookie deal after the team picked up his fifth-year option last offseason. Chris Grier, Miami’s general manager, was asked about the team’s long-term plans with the defensive tackle.
“Christian, ever since we drafted him has not gotten done nothing but get better each year,” Grier said. “He is a tireless worker. He’s in every day still in the offseason, I’ve seen him around more than anyone. And so he loves the game.
“He loves our organization. We love him. We’d like to have him here for a long time. In terms of conversations with agents, you know, you don’t really talk publicly about it. But we would like to have him here longer.”
Wilkins earned 3.5 sacks with 16 total tackles for a loss and two forced fumbles in 2022. His 98 tackles were a career-high for the former Clemson stand-out. Wilkins graded out as the league’s ninth-best defensive tackle, according to ProFootballFocus.
The Dolphins recently traded with the Denver Broncos for Bradley Chubb and have a budding star in Jaelan Phillips, but Wilkins is the eight-cylinder piston engine powering the unit.