Multiple Dolphins players, as PFT reported on Sunday evening, have instructed their agents to get them away from a team that the believe is deliberately tanking the 2019 season. One player who reportedly won’t be asking to be traded (and indeed won’t be traded) is cornerback Xavien Howard.
“Dolphins have told him they value him and he said he wants to stay,” Barry Jackson of the Miami Herald reports.
That’s not a surprise, given that Howard signed a five-year extension this summer. They could have not signed him and shipped him to a team that will. Or they could have let him finish his rookie deal and tagged and traded him in March. Besides, trading Howard now would trigger full acceleration of his $7 million signing bonus.
Beyond Howard, pretty much everyone on the roster would presumably be available, whether they want out or not. Only nine days after dumping Laremy Tunsil and Kenny Stills and only eight after unloading Kiko Alonso, the Dolphins could be looking to send more players elsewhere — especially if players begin to clamor more and more loudly for a one-way ticket out of town.
However it plays out, Brian Flores has an early-career challenge unlike any he surely thought he’d experience as a head coach. He needs to get his team to move past a 59-10 loss, he needs to get them to believe that the team isn’t tanking, and he needs to get ready to face a Patriots team that may have the cherry on top of the icing on top of the cherry in Antonio Brown ready to go by Sunday.