The Miami Dolphins and Reshad Jones seem to have made up, if only for the kids. And by "kids" we mean "trade leverage," because reports say the Dolphins and Jones have a mutual desire to part ways if at all possible before the season begins. Between Jones' $17.2 million cap hit, his rocky relationship with the team (which included him quitting ten snaps into a game against the New York Jets), and the obvious fact that Jones isn't part of the Dolphins' future, there doesn't seem to be many reasons for him to stick around Miami if he doesn't have to stay.
Regardless, the Dolphins should mend fences with arguably their best football player, take advantage of a fresh start under a completely new coaching staff in 2019, and see what the future holds for Jones. He is the type of lifelong, homegrown Miami Dolphin who deserves a mulligan on what everyone can agree wasn't his best year, leadership-wise, in 2018. The Fins need him and should keep him.
The Dolphins should not be in the business of giving away elite football players for nothing but salary-cap relief, especially when they're predicted to be one of the teams with the most salary-cap space in the NFL come next season. Anyone who says getting rid of Jones for a measly fourth-round pick will help the team intentionally lose more often for a higher draft pick next season is unrealistic — this coaching staff and team have no intention of tanking.
It makes no sense to give away Jones because he had issues with Adam Gase and the old coaching staff. Gase has already begun to wear out his welcome in New York thanks to his crappy attitude, thirst for power, and shitty people skills.
It seems entirely possible there might have been good reason Jones had zero respect for his old coaches. A fresh start is warranted.
"Voluntary means voluntary," Reshad Jones explains his absence earlier this offseason and gets back to work in Davie today. Has no issues with new coach Brian Flores. Via @Local10Sports. pic.twitter.com/FY6S8gu9c3— Will Manso (@WillMansoWPLG) June 4, 2019
Reshad Jones said he stayed away from voluntary practices to get himself right off shoulder surgery. Said he is one of best safeties in league, has nothing to prove.— Barry Jackson (@flasportsbuzz) June 4, 2019
After Jones skipped the Dolphins' voluntary mini-camp in late May, some weren't convinced he planned to show up when the team opened mandatory mini-camp this week. Lo and behold, though, there was Jones when the team took the field, and there we were asking questions about his future as a Miami Dolphin. His answers were clear, plausible, and extremely aboveboard.
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Jones wanted to get well on his own before a long season and felt he could do that better on his own, not in Miami running around in 90-degree weather in basketball shorts doing drills he's done 50,000 times. That's fair. Now comes the true test for Jones and the team as to whether this is all just lip service in an attempt to repair his trade value.
Besides everything mentioned, Jones is just necessary for this team, roster- and structure-wise. Minkah Fitzpatrick is one of the best slot corners in the game heading into his second season. Moving him to safety after he's proven to be elite at something just 16 games into his career would make no sense. Bobby McCain isn't a safety. You can tell by looking at him that's a bad idea. He's also a slot corner, or if the Dolphins are lucky, a starter on the outside opposite of Xavien Howard.
These guys, all together, could be one of the best secondaries in the NFL. Trading the best of the bunch to save some money in a season most agree isn't going very far does nothing but provide less entertainment to Dolphins fans while putting more money in owner Stephen Ross' pockets.
There should be no trade of Jones — at least not this season. The Dolphins need his leadership and playmaking ability in the secondary. If the Dolphins want to get off to a good start under new coach Brian Flores, Jones should be a Miami Dolphin this year.