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Miami Dolphins

The Miami Dolphins’ purported waiver of the option to re-sign means that Brian Flores and the Minnesota Vikings now have the #1 opening.



Legend & Legacy of the Miami Dolphins

Following his draft selection from the University of Clemson in 2019, Christian Wilkins, a fifth-year veteran and team captain for the Miami Dolphins, has amassed an amazing resume. He has racked up 20.5 QB sacks in his career; this past season, he recorded his greatest sack total of 9.0. At 6’4″ and 310 pounds, 28-year-old run-stuffing force Wilkins has repeatedly shown his mettle against the run over the years. His game has clearly transferred from the college to the NFL level with ease.
On Monday, December 11, 2023, at Hard Rock Stadium in Miami, Florida, defensive tackle Christian Wilkins (94) of the Miami Dolphins celebrates sacking quarterback Will Levis of the Tennessee Titans during the first quarter.The decision by the Dolphins to forego franchise tag protection for Christian Watkins and instead grant him the status of a true unrestricted free agent has given defensive coordinator Brian Flores and the Minnesota Vikings the chance to reunite with their former first-round pick, whom Flores had a great deal of success selecting from the Miami Dolphins in the 2019 draft. This would be a perfect illustration of how the Flores defense is supposed to be set up defensively. Harrison Phillips, the more diminutive run stopper, has performed admirably in the past, but in the last two seasons with the Minnesota Vikings, he has experienced both evident and subtle difficulties due to defensive line alterations and adaptations.

FILE: Brian Flores, the defensive coordinator for the Minnesota Vikings, observes his players before Saturday, August 26, 2023, NFL preseason football game in Minneapolis against the Arizona Cardinals. In his first season as the defensive coordinator of the Minnesota Vikings, Flores has outperformed even head coach Kevin O’Connell in terms of what he might achieve. (Image courtesy of Bruce Kluckhohn/AP) (Associated Press / Bruce Kluckhohn)

In comparison to Christian Wilkins, former Minnesota star Dalvin Tomlinson had many traits and similarities, particularly with regard to the $14.4-5 million annual contract that Tomlinson previously inked with the Cleveland Browns. Since Christian Wilkins is currently the seventh-best defensive tackle in the NFL, his projected value is $20 million each year, or more appropriately, $80.988 million over four years. A healthy addition, Wilkins would bring sturdiness to the Minnestoa Vikings defense, which is already performing quite well, starting in 2023.
The Minnesota Vikings’ 2022 season saw them nearly finish dead last in terms of overall defense. With his position-neutral style, Brian Flores and Josh Metellus, who can play nickel corner, safety, edge rusher, and sub linebacker, are two players that stand out for their versatility. In the end, the Vikings placed 17th in win defensive efficiency and 19th in defensive EPA at the conclusion of the 2023 campaign.

The Minnesota Vikings boast an impressive roster of exceptional interior defensive lineman, including former great John Randle and standouts like Pat Williams and Kevin Williams. It is noteworthy that the Vikings defense played the greatest number of defensive snaps (181) last season without having an interior defensive lineman on the field. Brian Flores would then be able to further develop the many look defensive scheme that brought success in the past and kept the struggling Vikings offense in the majority of their tight games with the potential arrival of Christian Wilkins.

Since Wilkins is a free agency this summer and is no longer restricted, many teams will try to sign him. He brings a lot of value to any team interested in his future services because he’s one of the more nimble big guys at his stature. With so many guys getting older, there are a lot of questions surrounding the Vikings defense going forward. It’s possible that Harrison Smith and Danielle Hunter will be leaving the squad this offseason. In addition, Dean Lowry and Jaquelin Roy’s probable exit. Without a question, Minnesota is in severe need and will work hard this offseason to get Wilkins.



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