Miami Dolphins make final decisions on Austin Jackson’s and Noah Igbinoghene’s 5th-year options

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Sam Navarro-USA TODAY Sports

To the surprise of vey few, the Miami Dolphins have reportedly decided to not pick up the fifth-year options for offensive lineman Austin Jackson and defensive back Noah Igbinoghene.

Both players have struggled with consistency issues since being selected by the Dolphins back in the first round of the 2020 NFL Draft.

Jackson was selected with the 18th overall pick and has played in 32 games across three seasons, making 30 starts. The University of Southern California product began last season as the team’s starting right tackle before going down with an injury in Week 1.

He wound up only playing in a total of two games (two starts) during the 2022 season. He wasn’t all that bad during those two appearances, but the team hasn’t seen enough solid play from him over the past few seasons.

Dolphins general manager Chris Grier recently said that the expectation is for Jackson to be the team’s starting right tackle once again this season.

The team is apparently “excited” for Jackson.

As for Igbinoghene, he’s also appeared in 32 games during his time with the Dolphins. However, he’s missed many games in his career as a healthy scratch.

Last season, the Auburn University product played in nine games, recording three passes defended and one interception. Even with injuries to players like Byron Jones and Nik Needham, Igbinoghene wasn’t able to secure consistent playing time.

One can only wonder what the future holds for him after the Dolphins made a blockbuster move for Pro Bowl cornerback Jalen Ramsey and selected Cam Smith in the second round of the 2023 NFL Draft.

Igbinoghene will have to really impress coaches during training camp to carve out a solid role for the upcoming season.

While the Dolphins decided to not pick up the options on Jackson’s and Igbignohene’s contracts, it doesn’t necessarily mean that both players will be gone by the time next season begins.

The two could always have breakout seasons and sign extensions with Miami. Only time will tell if that’s in the cards. For now, they are set to become unrestricted free agents after the conclusion of the 2023 season.

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David is a University of Maryland graduate who grew up most of his life in Miami. He has experience in writing, editing and video production, and he's excited to be able to contribute to Dolphin Nation.