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Will The Dolphins Re-Sign Jeff Wilson Jr.? Fantasy Football Outlook

Jeff Wilson Jr. - Fantasy Football Rankings, Draft Sleepers, Waiver Wire Pickups

Last season, the Miami Dolphins traded for running back Jeff Wilson Jr. in exchange for a fifth-round pick in the 2023 NFL Draft.

The fifth-year player from North Texas was doing reasonably well with the San Francisco 49ers before he got reunited with former 49ers offensive coordinator and current Dolphins head coach Mike McDaniel. He missed only one game and finished with 176 carries for 860 rushing yards and five touchdowns.

Wilson also had ten carries for 23 yards and a touchdown during Wild Card Weekend but fell short against division rivals Buffalo Bills. With him becoming a free agent once the 2023 NFL league year starts, off-season developments dictate that the Dolphins are better off giving him a new contract. However, offering him a long-term deal might be a push.

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Miami's Options at RB

While he will remain an effective option from Miami’s backfield, injuries have prevented him from completing an entire NFL season. Likewise, it’s difficult to see him as a 1,000-yard rusher because he is sharing carries with Raheem Mostert, plus Miami’s passing attack is one of the league’s best.

They can let him go and sign another free-agent running back, but they would have to contend with other teams to get the likes of Saquon Barkley, Josh Jacobs, Jamaal Williams, and D'Onta Foreman, to name a few. However, the Dolphins cannot offer the big bucks because they are $16.3 million over the 2023 salary cap, forcing them to move money or trade players to land a marquee running back.

The NFL Draft could be an option to get another running back, but the talent level at the position is shallow. The Dolphins do not have a first-round pick in 2023 for violating the league’s anti-tampering policy. Unfortunately, Texas’ Bijan Robinson is the only prospect projected to go on the opening round, and he might hear his name called in the draft’s first half.

 

What Jeff Wilson Jr.’s Deal Might Look Like

Wilson’s familiarity with McDaniel’s system will ultimately land him another contract with Miami. Besides, averaging almost 50 yards per game during his brief stint with the Dolphins is impressive. However, the team might also look to give Mostert a new contract. Their numbers are comparable, with Mostert finishing with 891 yards and six touchdowns.

However, the Purdue alumnus is already 30 years old and will be playing in his ninth NFL season. That age is when a running back’s performance typically declines. While the peak of his career started during his time with the 49ers, he only had one complete season with the squad due to ankle and knee injuries. While he remains productive in Miami, the Dolphins might view Wilson as the next starting running back.

Therefore, the Dolphins will likely offer Wilson a two-year contract at most, with the second year being an option. Miami will exercise the second year if he continues to be a steady contributor. That scenario allows them to chase 2024 free-agent running backs like Joe Mixon, D’Andre Swift, Jonathan Taylor, A.J. Dillon, Austin Ekeler, and J.K. Dobbins. They might also pursue 2024 prospects like Raheim Sanders or Braelon Allen.



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