Defensive tackle Earl Mitchell has “internal support” within the Dolphins front office, according to Barry Jackson of the Miami Herald, which means the 29-year-old may not be a simple cap casualty this offseason. Mitchell is scheduled to count $4.5MM on Miami’s 2017 salary cap, but the Dolphins could clear out all but $500K of that total by releasing him in the coming weeks. After missing half the season with a calf injury, Mitchell only ended playing a quarter of Miami’s defensive snaps, but Jackson reports that his “motor and leadership” are respected.
Here’s more from around the AFC:
- Kevin Zeitler and the Bengals hadn’t initiated contract negotiations as of a month ago, and Paul Dehner Jr. of the Cincinnati Enquirer continues to believe the veteran guard will leave this spring via the free agent market. If the Bengals are faced with a choice between Zeitler and left tackle Andrew Whitworth, the club will likely side with Whitworth, per Dehner, especially given that Zeitler could “break the bank” as the No. 1 interior lineman available. Finding a solution along the offensive line was among the list of Cincinnati’s key offseason needs that I outlined earlier this month.
- The Ravens could be suitor for free agent safety Tony Jefferson, reports Jason La Canfora of CBSSports.com, who notes Baltimore “wouldn’t mind pairing” Jefferson with Eric Weddle in the back end. Jefferson, 25, could make sense for a number of teams and is expected to be one of the top safeties available. However, no club signed him to a restricted free agent offer sheet last year when the cost for doing so would have been minimal.
- Speaking on 97.5 The Game, Raiders general manager Reggie McKenzie sounded interested in re-signing running back Latavius Murray, but admitted Oakland could get priced out of the picture. “He’s one of those kinds that don’t come around too often when you talk about size,” said McKenzie. “I’m always in position to want to re-sign our own players, but the finances of it always will play a part. You never know there’s 31 other teams out there who may be communicating to his representatives.”