The Miami Dolphins may look at restructuring Ndamukong Suh's contract this offseason and that could help the team potentially retain free agents like Lamar Miller, Rishard Matthews and Olivier Vernon.
Suh signed a massive $114 million contract last offseason and heading into 2016, Miami may look at fixing up the deal to save some salary cap space. Dolphins executive vice president of football operations Mike Tannenbaum said to the South Florida Sun-Sentinel last week that the team is going to "look at" the possibility of restructuring Suh's deal, which could help the team get some extra salary cap space to use this offseason.
Tannenbaum added that no decisions have been made, but that the team will consider that move along with other options, including potential releases of players to free up space. Pro Football Talk reports that Suh will have his base salary go up from $985,000 to $23.485 million for next season and he will count for over $28 million on the cap for next year. The team can free up some money by turning part of Suh's salary into a signing bonus, which would allow the team to get around $18 million in cap space, according to the Palm Beach Post.
According to the Post, Miami is projected to be over the cap heading into the offseason and making a move with Suh would allow the team to jump under by a significant margin. Miami is going to have to make some moves no matter what since they are projected to be over the cap and along with Suh they could consider releasing players. The Miami Herald writes that players like Cameron Wake, Greg Jennings, Jordan Cameron and Brent Grimes could be potential salary cap cuts this offseason.
Miami has Lamar Miller as their top free agent hitting the market and the team likely will at least try to retain him on a new deal. Miller is expected to be a top target among the free agent RBs and that could keep Miami from bringing him back if his price tag gets too high. Miller is going to be just 25 when next season starts and teams like the Cowboys, Giants and 49ers could target him in free agency.
James Walker at ESPN reports that while Miller said that he is interested in coming back to the Dolphins, "scheme and fit" will be important factors in where he ends up signing. The team also has Olivier Vernon and Rishard Matthews hitting the market and there is a chance both players could leave. The team has DeVante Parker coming back after his rookie season, while Vernon may be too expensive if he asks for the same type of contract that Cameron Jordan got from the Saints at over $50 million.