In 2024, the Miami Dolphins face the crucial task of judiciously allocating their funds. Despite various areas of need, one understated requirement may lie in securing a reliable slot receiver to complement Tyreek Hill and Jaylen Waddle.
While the upcoming draft may offer promising pass-catching prospects, Brad Spielberger, an analyst at Pro Football Focus, has hinted at Miami’s potential interest in veteran slot specialist Curtis Samuel during free agency.
“Miami adding another inside/outside athlete that continues the track speed trend would be a fun third option alongside Tyreek Hill and Jaylen Waddle. Mike McDaniel would surely take advantage of Samuel’s ability with the ball in his hands near the line of scrimmage, weaponizing plenty of pre-snap motion and diverse formations/alignments, and he can also still win over the top on occasion.”
Samuel, a second-round pick in 2017, showcased his talents notably during his contract year with the Carolina Panthers in 2020. Following a season with 627 receiving yards, the agile playmaker elevated his performance to 851 receiving yards in his fourth NFL campaign. His versatility was evident as he surpassed 1,000 yards from scrimmage, earning recognition as a dynamic all-around contributor.
His impressive showing led to a lucrative contract with the Washington Commanders, totaling $34.5 million over three years, of which he earned nearly the entirety, as reported by Over the Cap ($34.1 million).
Considering the Dolphins’ penchant for speed under Coach McDaniel, integrating Samuel into an offensive lineup alongside Hill, Waddle, and dynamic running backs like De’Von Achane and Raheem Mostert could prove formidable.
However, the financial aspect remains a crucial consideration. With Samuel turning 28 in August, Miami must exercise prudence to avoid overspending on a slot receiver, albeit one with proven utility.
Samuel’s recent averages of 634.5 receiving yards over two seasons present a clear upgrade over last year’s WR3 options for the Dolphins. Nevertheless, the team’s cap space constraints, under the purview of general manager Chris Grier, necessitate a careful balancing act.
While Spielberger’s suggestion of Samuel as a potential addition to the Dolphins roster is enticing, it’s plausible that Miami may opt to address this need through the upcoming draft, where they can potentially find cost-effective solutions.
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