May 19, 2024

As of February 17, the Miami Dolphins find themselves in a precarious cap situation, with Over the Cap indicating their available space at a concerning negative $51.898 million, the second-worst in the NFL behind the New Orleans Saints.

Jerome Baker, Dolphins agree to three-year, $39M extension | Yardbarker

With the new league year looming in March, the Dolphins urgently need to trim their salary expenses. One player identified as a potential “cut candidate” by uSTADIUM is linebacker Jerome Baker, especially considering his hefty $37.5 million contract. Over the Cap suggests that the Dolphins could save $11.053 million by designating Baker as a post-June 1 release, or clear $9.82 million by cutting him before that date.

Dolphins general manager Chris Grier must be weighing these options carefully, along with considerations for other veterans like edge rusher Emmanuel Ogbah and cornerback Xavien Howard.

While Baker has been a valuable contributor to the Dolphins’ defense, injuries and financial constraints may prompt the team to reassess his future. Omar Kelly of Sports Illustrated discussed the possibility of releasing or restructuring Baker’s contract, noting his leadership qualities and on-field contributions.

However, new Dolphins defensive coordinator Anthony Weaver’s introductory press conference on February 15 raised eyebrows as he failed to mention Baker among the key players he expects to feature prominently in the 2024 season.

Despite the potential for a cut, there’s speculation that the Dolphins could opt to re-sign Baker at a later date, particularly if he doesn’t find a new team in free agency. Podcaster Neal Driscoll proposed a scenario where Baker is released before June 1 to create cap space, with the possibility of reuniting with the Dolphins at a reduced cost post-June 1, following the resolution of other financial matters like Xavien Howard’s situation.

As the NFL’s new league year approaches, the Dolphins will need to make strategic decisions to address their cap challenges and shape their roster for the upcoming season.

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