This year the Miami Dolphins were expected to make the playoffs, win the AFC East, and compete for a Super Bowl.
This year instead, the team finished with one of the worst records in the NFL at 6-10.
Outside of the fact that the Dolphins had their 50th anniversary of being an NFL franchise, this organization hasn’t had much to get excited for. It’s been a very tough season to endure if you were a Dolphins fans because of the large roster moves that occurred all season. The strength of this team was supposedly their defensive line and that’s because they signed defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh. Suh was supposed to create easier opportunities for his defensive linemen teammates but it didn’t completely go as planned for Miami.
Alternatively, one of the players who made a big impact on the defensive line this season was defensive end, Olivier Vernon.
— Miami Dolphins (@MiamiDolphins) November 28, 2015
In spite of having to watch the overall Dolphins team disappoint the community, this year the true disappointment could come in the offseason. Out of all of the players on the roster, this season was more important to Oliver Vernon because he’s been synonymous with Miami like Uncle Luke, Rick Ross, Pitbull and the Miami Hurricanes are.
Vernon is already a hometown hero because he has only known about playing football the South Florida way. Vernon went to high school at American Senior High School in Miami where he showed everyone why they should continue to follow his career. Vernon used the success that he had at American to propel him into his greater purpose of playing football for the prestigious University of Miami on a football scholarship. As a standout defensive lineman on the Hurricanes roster, Vernon called his career short at the University of Miami and declared early for the 2012 NFL Draft, where the Miami Dolphins drafted him in the third round.
Since playing for the Dolphins, Vernon has easily grown into a crowd favorite since many fans have seen him grow right in the city. The problem is, Vernon’s contract with the Dolphins is over and he’s now getting ready to enter into free agency.
— Fran Duffy (@fduffy3) November 13, 2015
Short and simple, the Dolphins have to find a way to make sure that Vernon doesn’t leave the city. Vernon has publically stated that he has no desire to leave and now it’s up to the organization to make sure that idea comes to fruition.
“I’d like to be here. But at the end of the day, business is business. So if this is my last game and I enter free agency, then I’m going to see how that goes” said Vernon.
Vernon this season led the team in sacks as he recorded seven for the entire year. However, during his entire tenure playing for the Dolphins Vernon has recorded 190 combined tackles, 140 total tackles, 28.5 sacks, four forced fumble and one touchdown. Now it’s not wrong if Vernon was to leave town for the big pay day. It’s only the natural way of life, especially for as violent as the NFL is when it comes to injuries.
However, if the Dolphins don’t find a way to negotiate and re-sign Vernon it only continues to show the level of ineptitude that the front office shows each season. The bad news is that general manager Dennis Hickey has just been fired and will no longer be the general manager of the team. Hickey during his tenure was responsible for bringing in most notably Jarvis Landry and Ja’Wuan James so he’s got an eye for football talent. Under Hickey, it would seem like a no-brainer to bring back Vernon who has cemented himself as one of the best defensive players on the team. Under new management, who knows what we, Vernon, or anyone for that matter can expect. After finishing with a 6-10 record and once again failing to make the playoffs no one can be too sure that their spot will be reserved for next season.
We’ll have to see how this story will play out, continue to keep notice.
D’Joumbarey A. Moreau covers sports in Miami-Dade & Broward County. You can follow him on Twitter@DJoumbarey.