East Notes: Dolphins, Maclin, Eli, Blount

The Seahawks selected Russell Wilson 75th overall in the 2012 NFL draft, meaning every team had a shot at him, and can play the “what if?” game. However, as Elizabeth Merrill of ESPN.com details, the Dolphins in particular can look back at what might have been. According to Merrill, current Arkansas coach Bret Bielema, who was interviewing for the Dolphins’ head coaching job at that point, pushed the idea of drafting Wilson – Bielema’s QB at Wisconsin at the time – in the second round. That didn’t go over well with team management, including then-GM Jeff Ireland, and Miami ultimately ended up hiring Joe Philbin and drafting Ryan Tannehill eighth overall.

As we contemplate how the last three NFL seasons might have changed if the Dolphins had opted for Bielema and Wilson, let’s check in on a few more items from out of the AFC East….

  • Addressing his contract situation today, wideout Jeremy Maclin confirmed that negotiations between his representation and the Eagles are ongoing, per Jeff McLane of the Philadelphia Inquirer. Maclin still expects to return to Philadelphia, though he acknowledged that nothing’s imminent yet. According to McLane, the veteran receiver will likely be seeking a five-year contract worth $10MM+ per year, which could make the franchise tag a viable option for the Eagles.
  • Speaking of that tag, in an Insider-only piece for ESPN.com, Adam Caplan identifies Maclin as one of the league’s top five candidates to be franchised.
  • While his older brother made the move from the Colts to the Broncos late in his playing career, Eli Manning is less likely to leave the Giants and play elsewhere, in the view of father Archie Manning. As Jordan Raanan of NJ.com writes, the elder Manning thinks Eli would rather simply retire than play for a team besides the Giants.
  • Patriots running back LeGarrette Blount had faced marijuana possession charges earlier in the season, but those charges have been dropped after Blount completed 50 hours of community service, tweets Adam Schefter of ESPN.com.
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