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Positive Update for Hunt, Perhaps Not for Dolphins

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Robert Hunt, a guard with the Miami Dolphins, celebrated his former college colleague Kevin Dotson signing an extension less than a week before what might be a large payout for him.

Beyond the satisfaction of seeing an old friend recognized for his hard work, Hunt was pleased with the move since it may have given him a sense of the potential price he could get on the open market.

The Los Angeles Rams signed Dotson to a three-year contract worth $48 million, including $32 million guaranteed, on Friday, retaining Hunt and Dotson among the best guards available on the free agent market, which officially begins on Wednesday.

NFL.com ranked Dotson sixth and Hunt second among pending UFA guards; Pro Football Focus ranked Dotson first and Hunt second.

Irrespective of their general perception throughout the league, it is reasonable to surmise that Dotson offers a decent model for Hunt’s potential free agent deal.

The Dolphins, who might not have the budget room or financial flexibility to pay that high for Hunt, are not as happy about this development as Hunt is.

PFF had estimated that Dotson’s contract would be four years, with an average yearly salary of $15 million and a guaranteed sum of $36 million; in those final two categories, they were quite close.

For Hunt, PFF estimated a guaranteed $42 million over four years, or an average of $17.5 million.

THE DOLPHINS WOULD HEARTHEARTLY LOSE FROM HUNT
Hunt, a 2020 second-round selection, is perhaps the most important upcoming free agent for the Dolphins, only surpassed by Christian Wilkins.

However, the Dolphins had 26 players set to become unrestricted free agents going into the offseason; however, that number has already dropped by one as the team has agreed to terms with punter Jake Bailey.

The Dolphins also entered the summer considerably over the salary cap, and they still need to make adjustments in order to be in compliance by next Wednesday at 4 p.m. ET.

The Dolphins need to be extremely frugal with their spending and cannot afford to offer every incoming UFA the contract they want.

Although Hunt would prefer to stay in Miami, like many of his teammates in similar circumstances, it is unrealistic to expect him to give the Dolphins a “hometown discount.”

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