The Dolphins continue to work on an extension for one of their defensive leaders. According to Barry Jackson of the Miami Herald, the Dolphins continue to “exchange numbers” with Christian Wilkins‘ representatives on a new contract.
[RELATED: Dolphins Eyeing Extension For DT Christian Wilkins]
As Jackson notes, there was still a “gap” in negotiations as recently as last week. However, there “remains optimism” that the two sides will eventually agree to a new deal.
We heard last month that the organization was hoping to extend their defensive tackle. Jackson previously hinted that guaranteed money could end up being a topic of contention between the two sides, especially if Wilkins is hoping to be paid similarly to some of the league’s other top DTs.
There are currently seven defensive tackles who top the $20MM average-annual-value mark. Considering his lack of track record, Wilkins won’t come close to matching Aaron Donald‘s staggering $31.6MM average annual value. However, his representatives could point to the contract that the Titans recently gave to Jeffery Simmons (four years, $94MM). If guarantees are truly a sticking point, then it’s worth noting that five of the seven $20MM+ AAV defensive tackles received more than $55MM in guaranteed money.
Wilkins, the 13th-overall pick in the 2019 draft, was a bit inconsistent to start his career. He showed up in a big way in 2021, finishing with 4.5 sacks while finishing as Pro Football Focus’ sixth-best interior defender (among 108 qualifiers). The 27-year-old finished ninth among 127 qualifying players in 2022, with the 6-4, 310-pounder compiling 3.5 sacks and 15 pressures.