The Dolphins are limited with draft capital and rank near the bottom of the league in overall cap space. Despite general manager Chris Grier’s limited flexibility, Miami could swing for a four-time Pro Bowler running back in the coming weeks.
“People are starting to realize that Dalvin...has Hall of Fame numbers, but he’s been in Minnesota and they’ve been mediocre,” Hiller said. “He actually has incredible statistics but also he’s been playing with one shoulder.”
Zach Hiller, who is Dalvin Cook’s agent, talks about the rumors that have been swirling around about his clients future with the team. Doesn’t sound like he will be with the #Vikings next season to me. What do you think?— VikingzFanPage (@vikingzfanpage) April 14, 2023
: Caps Off Podcast pic.twitter.com/MJFfJFHdUd
ESPN’s Jeremy Fowler reported on Saturday morning that the Vikings could cut Cook before the 2023 NFL Draft.
“I’m told all options are on the table here and that he could be released closer to the draft if things don’t work out,” Fowler said. “They had talked to at least one team about a trade in the past closer to free agency, so he is certainly a name to watch.”
The Vikings are searching for a trade partner because the team saves $5.89 million by cutting the 2016 Unanimous All-American before June 1 compared to $7.89 million if they trade him before June 1.
The Dolphins are set to receive $13.6 million on June 1 after releasing Byron Jones with a failed physical, but that doesn’t help the franchise in a metaphorical trade for Cook. Miami could trade a player, but Minnesota looks to move on from the running back to save money.
That said, the Dolphins need to hope that the Vikings can’t find a trade partner for Cook. If he’s released, as Fowler suggested, Miami could negotiate a deal with Cook even if both sides needed to wait until June 1 for the ink to sign.
Grier made a point to re-sign Raheem Mostert, Jeff Wilson Jr., Myles Gaskin, and Salvon Ahmed this off-season. While Mostert set a new career-high in rushing yards, Miami was one of the worst teams (No. 27 with 96 yards per game) when it came to running the football last year.
Coach Mike McDaniel recently discussed the franchise’s mindset when deciding to re-sign the entire group of running backs.
“So you take a look at the whole class and ultimately we had the opportunity to bring two of our strongest character contributors and really players we depend on in Raheem [Mostert], and Jeff [Wilson],” McDaniel said. “I think we were able to get those two guys together which was very important, and I see them as a big part of our team and just the fabric and who we are as human beings; they really contribute to that locker room.
“I’m very excited to get those guys and I honestly believe they’re playing their best ball their careers.”
While Wilson and Mostert may be enough to power the offense, keep in mind that Cook ranks 12th among running with a minimum of 100 carries with an average of 82.2 yards per game since 1970. Moster and Wilson are great players — and great leaders — as McDaniel noted, but Cook ranks fourth among active running backs with an average of 86.6 rushing yards per game.
The Dolphins have a strong running back unit at the moment, but remember that Grier made the cornerback group great by adding Jalen Ramsey. He made the receiving group great by trading for Tyreek Hill. If Miami can make another position group great — history suggests it will take that swing.