The 2019 offseason purge of the Miami Dolphins oldest and most expensive players has so far been an expected breath of fresh air, as Stephen Ross’ declaration of a rebuild seems to be in full effect and Chris Grier has been working his magic.
Reshad Jones, longtime Dolphins safety and 2-time Pro Bowler, has been mentioned recently as a candidate to be the next player to be cut or traded. At this point, the only reason the 31-year-old safety entering his 10th NFL season is still on the roster is because his contract does not allow the team to benefit from cutting or trading him at this time.
However, according to Armando Salguero of the Miami Herald, the Dolphins can save up to $13.1 million this year by trading Jones after June 1st. They also can save up to $11.5 million by cutting or trading him next offseason.
Taking all of this into consideration, I do not see the team cutting Jones this offseason simply because it would not offer any immediate cap space relief to do so. I expect Chris Grier to wait until June 1st before he begins reaching out and trying to find potential trade suitors, and I also would not be surprised to see him offer to pay part of his salary if the compensation is going to be worth it.
At this point, whether Reshad Jones will be on the Dolphins for this season is yet to be seen, but I suspect that if he remains on the 2019 roster then it will be his last season with the team because his age does not mesh well with the youth movement this franchise is currently under.
One thing I do not understand, however, is most of the fan base calling for the team to get rid of Jones. Believe me, if there is a team that wants him and is willing to give up reasonable compensation, then I am on board if Chris Grier decides to make a trade this offseason. On the other hand, Reshad Jones has been one of the most exciting players the Dolphins have had over the past decade and has played through multiple shoulder injuries that required him to have surgically repaired in the following offseason.
I understand the situation last season when Jones refused to re-enter the game against the Jets when then Defensive Coordinator Matt Burke tried to run some sort of rotation between Jones, T.J. McDonald, and Minkah Fitzpatrick did not sit well with a lot of fans. There is no arguing that this was not a good look by any means, and that he most likely would have been cut the next day if he were almost anyone else besides Reshad Jones.
But like most situations, it is important to put this one into perspective: Jones just finished his ninth season with the team, and outside of that incident, how many times has he been a distraction to the Miami Dolphins in any capacity? I cannot think of one.
I was not in the team’s defensive meetings leading up to that week, so I am not in a position to speculate in terms of the details of what exactly happened, but in my mind when a player goes eight and a half seasons with an organization without any distractions whatsoever and then does something like that, I can’t help but assume there was a lack of transparency from the coaches to the players as far as their game-plan for that week.
Whether you agree or disagree with my stance on that particular issue, there is no denying that Reshad Jones, the 2010 5th round pick out of the University of Georgia, has been nothing short of amazing for the greater part of the past decade with the Miami Dolphins. I understand that this is a business and the team has to make decisions with the team’s long-term success in mind, and I do not see any issue with that whatsoever.
Regardless of whether or not that means Jones will be traded or released in the next year or two is yet to be seen, but no matter what happens there should be nothing but appreciation for what he gave to this organization and the way he played the game.