Jason Jones, Mario Williams, Dion Jordan, and Vance Joseph. All four are on the way out of Miami at the moment with Jones already having been cut while Jordan and Williams will likely be joining him in the coming weeks. Joseph looks to be as good as gone thanks to the interest from the Denver Broncos in naming him as their new head coach.
In short, this offseason will provide a major shakeup for the Miami Dolphins defense. What players return, who will signed, draft picks will all shape this team for years to come. Heck, you could even call this defensive shakeup the first major challenge of the Adam Gase-era in Miami. It’s success will almost certainly determine this team’s credibility as an AFC powerhouse for at least the next few years.
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First things first though, should Vance Joseph land a head coaching job — something that looks extremely likely at the moment — then who will replace him as the Dolphins defensive coordinator? Right now, the early favorite appears to be linebacker coach Matt Burke. Giving the team some continuity may be Gase’s main goal at this stage, meaning a promotion for Burke.
However, another name that has flashed up is that of Wade Phillips. Serving as the defensive coordinator for the Denver Broncos this season, Phillips has proven time and time again that he is a major force in the world of defensive coordinators. With Phillips and Gase having worked together in the past, there is a possibility that Gase could lure Phillips down to South Beach.
As far as the players go, some major decisions will need to made. Along with Jason Jones, Mario Williams, and Dion Jordan, who else will follow them out the door this offseason? Spencer Paysinger, Jelani Jenkins, and Bacarri Rambo are all free agents this offseason. Byron Maxwell, Earl Mitchell, and Koa Misi all remain as potential deadweight cuts.
With a cap space likely to be pushing the $55 million mark once cuts are made, the Miami Dolphins will have room to make some moves. Adding a few more draft picks could be on the cards as well as re-signing Andre Branch to a longer deal. Lets not forget about free agency either.
Players like Nick Perry would reinforce the linebacking corps while the team could target most of its defensive needs in the upcoming NFL Draft. One thing is for sure though, this offseason will see a major shakeup occur for the Miami Dolphins defense.