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Miami Herald: Dolphins expected to ‘explore’ trade for Colts running back Jonathan Taylor

Barry Jackson of the Miami Herald is reporting that the Miami Dolphins will ‘at least explore’ a trade for #elite running back, Jonathan Taylor. #FinsUp

Washington Commanders v Indianapolis Colts Photo by Dylan Buell/Getty Images

The Indianapolis Colts have officially granted running back Jonathan Taylor permission to seek a trade, and according to one of the greatest beat writers to ever cover the Dolphins, Miami will likely have an interest.

On Monday, Barry Jackson of the Miami Herald reported that the Dolphins are expected to “at least explore” a trade for #elite running back Jonathan Taylor.

The former second-round pick (41st-overall) of the 2020 NFL draft is currently set to make $5.1 million in 2023. But with his contract up after the end of the season, he’s looking to get paid. And with Irsay on record saying the Colts will not pay the star running back, he will now search for a new home. Could that be in Miami?

When we first got wind that Taylor wanted out of Indianapolis, I gave my initial thoughts on a potential trade. I also tried to figure out how a trade could happen and how it might make sense for the Dolphins. My takeaway? I don’t know how the Dolphins can pull this off when they have so many of their own players to sign and critical salary cap decisions to make in 2024. Then again, many have said the salary cap isn’t real for years.

As for compensation, the most recent trade we’ve seen for an #elite back was when the San Francisco 49ers traded a slew of picks to the Carolina Panthers for Christian McCaffrey. That compensation was a 2023 2nd, 3rd, 4th, AND a 2025 5th-round pick. The 49ers then paid him a massive four-year extension worth $64 million. Others have speculated the compensation may not be as much as what San Francisco paid for CMC, considering the poor relationship between JT and the Colts, in addition to his eagerness to get paid top $$$.

Maybe it’s an opportunity for Miami to unload an expensive veteran like Emmanuel Ogbah or Cedrick Wilson. I’m not sure what a trade might look like, but I do know that we never thought Tyreek Hill, Bradley Chubb, or Jalen Ramsey would be on the Dolphins, either.

During his three seasons with the Colts, Taylor carried the ball 756 times for 3,841 yards (5.1 yards per carry) and 33 touchdowns. He also caught 104 passes for 802 yards and three touchdowns. Translation: He’s good, and if there were any running back in the league worthy of a trade like this — outside of Christian McCaffrey — it would be Taylor.

There might be concerns regarding his injury history and heavy workload during his time at Wisconsin — running behind Alec Ingold — and with the Colts. But (IMO) his best years are still ahead. And with his time in Indy ending, it doesn’t hurt anyone to pick up the phone and inquire.

Will the Dolphins land Jonathan Taylor? Very unlikely. But as we’ve seen over the last few seasons, Miami is willing to leave no stone unturned in their pursuit of becoming a legit AFC contender. And while the season looks as bright as ever, adding a back of JT’s caliber would send Miami’s offense into another stratosphere.

Do your thing, Chris Grier!

What are your thoughts on a Jonathan Taylor trade? What do you think a potential JT trade might look like? Do the Dolphins need to invest more in the running back room when the unit has looked pretty good throughout preseason?