10:44am: According to Barry Jackson of the Miami Herald, a clause in Freeman’s contract meant that the Dolphins assumed less risk financially by cutting him and re-signing the quarterback, rather than just keeping him.
10:37am: Just four days after cutting him, the Dolphins have re-signed quarterback Josh Freeman, the team announced today (via Twitter). Mike Freeman of Bleacher Report first reported (via Twitter) that Freeman was returning to the Dolphins.
It’s not immediately clear why Miami released Freeman, only to re-add him to the roster a few days later. It’s possible that the team simply wanted to negotiate different terms, but I wouldn’t expect the new contract to look much different from the one-year, minimum-salary pact Freeman initially signed. Either way, with Ryan Tannehill and Matt Moore ahead of him on the depth chart, Freeman probably won’t make the Dolphins’ regular season roster unless there’s an injury, or he has an unexpectedly productive preseason.
Freeman, 27, was Tampa Bay’s full-time starting quarterback from 2009 to 2012, but saw the wheels come off in 2013 and was cut by the team. In his first four seasons, the former 17th overall pick completed 58.8% of his passes and tossed 78 touchdowns to go with 63 interceptions, as well as throwing for more than 4,000 yards in 2012.
In 2013 though, Freeman’s completion percentage in four starts with the Bucs was just 45.7%, a number which declined even more after he joined the Vikings and performed poorly in his lone start. After not playing in the NFL in 2014, Freeman signed with the Dolphins earlier this offseason.