Impact player #1 priority for Dolphins this offseason
As the day after yet another losing Dolphins season came to a close, coach Joe Philbin said that he’s open to any and all ways to improve the team — including targeting a high-priced star in free agency.
Among the team’s top (if not the No. 1) offseason priorities: Finding at least one dynamic offensive weapon who can consistently get the low-octane Dolphins into the end zone.
“I think everyone thinks that,” center Mike Pouncey said, when asked if the Dolphins need more firepower to get over the hump.
“When you look around the league, everyone has great players on their football team, but you need those guys that can help you get to the playoffs and those guys are exceptional guys. They cost to be on your football team. I think [the Dolphins] are going to do a good job to get guys in like that.”
Pouncey spoke as the 2012 Dolphins gathered one final time Monday, with each player meeting privately with Philbin before scattering into the offseason.
But with 13 unrestricted free agents, roughly $47 million in salary-cap space and five of the first 90 picks of April’s draft — including the 12th overall — the team that reports to camp in the spring will look very different to the one who said their goodbyes Monday.
General manager Jeff Ireland has the final say on who the Dolphins will target — a team source reiterated Monday that Ireland’s job is safe — but Philbin said Monday that he will have a voice in the process.
And although Philbin has said in the past that he prefers to build through the draft, any impression that he is fundamentally opposed to paying top dollar for veteran free agents is wrong. Receivers Mike Wallace, Dwayne Bowe and Greg Jennings would intuitively fall on their wish list.
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