Miami Dolphins not clamoring to sign Bryant McKinnie despite line vacancies
Bryant McKinnie, who started 10 games for Miami last season and is willing to switch to right tackle, has not been contacted despite the Dolphins’ openings on the offensive line.
03/19/2014 12:00 AM
03/20/2014 1:18 AM
At this point in his career, Bryant McKinnie will play just about anywhere for anyone.
The Dolphins have a vacancy at right tackle.
And yet, there’s no sign that the two will reunite in 2014. As of Tuesday morning, the Dolphins had not reached out to McKinnie about returning next season, the Miami Herald has learned.
McKinnie, 34, has made the media rounds in recent weeks, and told 560-WQAM recently that he would even be willing to play on the right side after an entire career at left tackle.
“It shouldn’t be too hard,” McKinnie, a former University of Miami standout, told the radio station. “I have done it in practice a few times. It shouldn’t be too much of a transition.”
As for the Dolphins, they added a left tackle (Branden Albert) and a guard (Shelley Smith) in the first week of free agency — but nothing since. They haven’t even announced any other offensive lineman visiting, despite having two more spots to fill.
If the season began today, Nate Garner or Dallas Thomas would be the team’s starting right tackle. Neither took a snap at that position in 2013.
And so, with each passing day, the likelihood grows that the Dolphins will look to the draft to fill that crucial spot.
They’ve shown little interest in McKinnie, who started the last 10 games for Miami after joining the Dolphins in a midseason trade. (The Ravens are expected to get a late-round pick in return.) They made a play for Zach Strief, but he ultimately re-signed with the Saints.
After that, there’s not much left — and few options better than Tyson Clabo, their 2013 starter at right tackle who remains unsigned.
The Dolphins have expressed preliminary interest in former Texans linemen Wade Smith and Ryan Harris, although they haven’t been in a rush to sign either.
Former Buccaneers tackle Donald Penn is on the market and would be an intriguing fit considering his ties to first-year Dolphins general manager Dennis Hickey. The Washington Post reported that Penn will visit the Redskins this weekend.
Charles Brown, David Stewart and Eric Winston are among the other options remaining in free agency. Winston, a University of Miami alum, visited the Dolphins in each of the past two years but doesn’t appear to be an immediate priority for the team.
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