This was the one move that came completely out of nowhere. Middle linebacker wasn’t a need of the Dolphins’. Sure, Karlos Dansby was getting older, but he still played at a very high level and cutting him and giving Dannell Ellerbe even more money makes absolutely no sense. Dansby was owed about 15 million over the final two seasons of his deal, including just 6 million this year. Ellerbe signed for 5 years, 35 million.
Dansby was ProFootballFocus’ 13th ranked middle linebacker last year and Ellerbe was their 14th ranked, but Dansby is also a much more proven player than Ellerbe, a bit of a one year wonder. His 667 regular seasons snaps from this season were a career high and this is also the first time he ever graded out at an above league average level, struggling mightily in limited action in his first three years in the league. The Ravens supposedly valued him higher than anyone, especially with a massive need at middle linebacker, and it’s really telling that their offer didn’t even come close to matching Miami’s. Who were they bidding against? It seems like they’re burning money just to make a splash.