MIAMI GARDENS, Fla. — The Miami Dolphins and Christian Wilkins’ agent, David Mulugheta, have hit pause on contract extension talks as the season approaches.
Dolphins GM Chris Grier told reporters here Wednesday that the Dolphins have “made an offer that we thought was fair” to Wilkins. That was rejected, per ESPN, because of a disagreement over guaranteed money.
Wilkins instead plans to bet on himself in 2023 — believing he can get more in free agency (with the understanding that the franchise tag remains an option for Grier).
“Right now, we’re going to hold off until, in my mind, the end of the season,” Grier said. “I don’t think it’s fair to distract Christian from his goal of what he wants to achieve, and for the team.”
Where Do Things Stand With Miami Dolphins DT Christian Wilkins’ Contract?
But the fact that the Dolphins are willing to operate in the realm of what Wilkins presumably wants — believed to be in the neighborhood of $20 million annually — despite a red-ink soaked balance sheet in 2024 is revealing.
Christian Wilkins will not be making waves and signals that he’ll be in the lineup Week 1 pic.twitter.com/HbbL1gcqlM
— Adam Beasley (@AdamHBeasley) August 29, 2023
The Dolphins are somewhere in the neighborhood of $30 million over the cap next year, and that doesn’t include a potential Tua Tagovailoa contract extension (which will be addressed by the team and Tua’s representation after the season).
Still, Grier didn’t seem overly concerned about the team’s finances beyond 2023.
“I would say where we are today and where we are in March is always dramatically different,” Grier said. “Just watch every team around the league. Watch some teams, and they’re $100 million over, and then all of a sudden, they find a way to get under. Not worried about that.
“[Front office executives] Brandon [Shore] and Max [Napolitano] do a fantastic job, and we have a lot of discussions on not just short-term but long-term. We have a lot of good players coming available, not just Christian.
“There’s a lot of guys here in the pipeline over the next couple of years that are going to be expensive players. But in terms of Christian, we’ve had a lot of great dialogue with him and his agent. Very positive. We made an offer that we thought was fair, and there were times when you do things like that, it has to work for both sides. There’s never any ill-will from each side. I enjoy his agent. We have good conversations.”
Wilkins told reporters here Wednesday that he never considered demanding a trade despite the contract impasse, adding:
“Nobody wants to be a Miami Dolphin more than me. No one wants to work for this organization more than me.”
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