For many seasons Miami Dolphins’ fans have watched while the organization allowed some of their best players to become free agents, test the open market and then head out for greener pastures. This year there apparently has been a change in philosophy.
The Dolphins’ front office worked hard to retain the services of Kenny Stills and Andre Branch. They then turned their sites to one of the most important pieces and maybe the best player on the team in Reshad Jones.
Jones threatened to hold out going into the 2016 season but had a change of heart. Mike Tannenbaum, Vice President of Football Operations, made a commitment to Jones on what could be considered a gentlemen’s agreement, he would get Jones a new deal after the season, and he stuck to it.
“They kept their word. I’m glad it’s behind me.” Jones said. “It’s a surreal moment. I’m excited to be back. I’m excited to be out there with my teammates.”
Jones was likely on his way to another ProBowl when a shoulder injury slowed him and then ended his season after only six games. Since then he’s been working hard to get back and focusing on his rehab.
“I think my health is important. It is No. 1, so I wanted to get back healthy and I think I’m pretty much where I need to be. I’ve just got to keep working.”
He said the contract was on his mind but not the main focus.
“(The) contract was probably my No. 2 priority; but I’m glad it’s behind me now. I don’t want to focus on too much. Nothing changes for me in terms of continuing to be consistent and go out there and help this team win football games.”
The Dolphins have shown continued faith in Reshad, making him one of the better paid safeties in the league twice now. He and they see big things for him for the remainder of his career.
“I wish I could tell the future but I do know I’m going to give it my all – like I’ve been doing –dedicating myself on and off the field to the game and to the Miami Dolphins.” Jones said. “Who knows? I think I have a high ceiling. I just want to continue to be consistent and continue to show I’m one of the best safeties in the game.”
The Dolphins have continued to be aggressive in their free agent strategy as always. The piece that seems to be added is the commitment to their own. The Reshad Jones deal not only allows them to retain home grown talent but sends the message to the rest of the team that if you put in the hard work and perform on Sunday, you can be rewarded by the organization.
It will be interesting to see who will be the next player to get a deal. I’m sure everyone has a player or two in mind.
This story was written by Ron Canniff. Follow him on Twitter: @FinsBroadcaster
Latest Dolphins News