Originally written on Phins Phocus  |  Last updated 11/19/14

Just as training camp is supposed to start, the Miami Dolphins have three players unsigned: QB Ryan Tannehill, DE Olivier Vernon, and TE Michael Egnew.  While the Miami Dolphins enter camp this week, these three rookies could be looking at a delay of joining their teammates; critical time could be missed by promising 1st round pick Ryan Tannehill who is expected to compete with quarterbacks David Garrard and Matt Moore. 

So what exactly is the holdup?  For starters, when the new CBA was drafted and then ratified, the owners and players agreed upon specific language that would make 1st round picks have four year deals with a fifth year option, but that these contracts contain what is called offset language or the team having the option of paying a final option bonus in the fifth year in March. The kicker is the option bonus is paid and "guaranteed" even in the event of injury. 

To the Dolphins, this is a new development, but not entirely new on how they have conducted their business.  Dawn Aponte (she's the Dolphins Capologist)  is said to have wanted this option in the contract of Ryan Tannehill according to a report late last week by Mike Florio of PFT.  However, if you look at the history, this is nothing new.  Remember that Ronnie Brown signed a 4 year deal as the 2nd pick of the 2005 draft, but what not everyone knows is that Ronnie Brown protected himself by having his agent negotiate an option for a 5th year with the Dolphins.  Ronnie Brown did not arrive to camp on time and thus it made it a bit difficult to see him excel in a positive fashion in his first year with Nick Saban.  However, Ronnie Brown tore his ACL  and had a Lisfranc fracture during his time with the Dolphins.  His last year?  A horrible year statistically scoring touchdowns, but he established himself a contract year with that option and coming off an injury, if he did not have that 5th year?  He would not get many looks given a difficult and grueling injury and runningbacks don't have a lasting affect on most GMs in the NFL because of the pounding most take in years 1 through 3.  In fact, without that year, Ronnie Brown could have seen himself out of the league. 

For Tannehill, the Dolphins want this language for another reason...money.  According to Ian Rapoport of NFL.com, there is a chance that when a team cuts player X  from their team and was owed 2 million and then cut and then signed by a new team for 2 million, the original team saves 2 million dollars even though it is a guaranteed salary.  It's like the original team washes their hands of the money owed. 

So let's assume that Jeff Ireland and all responsible parties are in talks with Tannehill's agents and that he will be in camp by Thursday.  Should his contract haveoffset language then as fans, we know that the Dolphins won the negotiation.  Why would Tannehill's representatives not be in favor of the option year? Let's just say that Tannehill has his best year in year 4, wouldn't he want to sign for more money or sign elsewhere?   The inverse is true, Tannehill has 3 bad seasons in Miami and wants out in year 4 of the contract...Miami can get back money lost if he signs with a new team.

Keep in mind, no teams in the first round are including offset language even though they have every right to do so.  Where does that leave the Dolphins three rookies...as of this date unsigned and chomping at the bit to sign that 45 page document called a contract!

Just last week, both Andrew Luck and Robert Griffin III signed new rookie deals and each contract contains no offset language.  Let's go Dolphins the clock is ticking!

Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Father and son allegedly attack coach over playing time

The AFC North will regress in 2015

Doug Baldwin bringing 'sunblock' to Revis Island

Will the first-round running back return in 2015?

Robert Kraft: Richard Sherman is a 'marketing whiz'


Rob Gronkowski's party bus headed to Super Bowl

Matt Barnes not happy with NBA for $25,000 fine

Brandon Browner: 'No hard feelings' with Sherman, Thomas

Gronk reads erotica, sings Katy Perry at SB Media Day

Governor donates $10K to UNM hoops star’s cancer charity

U.S. Soccer: Hope Solo needs to do 'number of things' to return

Ten best teams that didn't make the Super Bowl

Ranking the NBA’s Coach of the Year candidates

WATCH: Zach Parise picks up his tooth off the ice

Crosby's name misspelled as 'Sindey' on Penguins program

Joe Biden blows off Olivia Munn to talk to Aaron Rodgers

James Shields need to adjust his contract expectations

Kurt Warner wonders about Patriots cheating in Super Bowl

4-star QB recruit decommits from Michigan

Top storylines for Super Bowl XLIX

WATCH: Pacquiao, Mayweather meet at halftime of Heat game

One of Tom Brady's ‘treats’ is avocado ice cream

Does MLB need more offense in the modern game?

NFL News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Doug Baldwin ready for Revis Island

Top storylines for Super Bowl XLIX

Barnes unhappy with NBA over fine

Does MLB need more offense in the modern game?

Re-ranking the Top 25: exposing the biggest flaws

Putting the Cavs’ pieces together

Super Bowl XLIX: Key people to know

Ranking all 48 Super Bowls

Bill Simmons fires a shot at Ray Lewis

NFL pushing CFP to change schedule

Can Yanks not pay A-Rod his bonuses?

Petition started to remove Pats from SB

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.