Although Miami Dolphins defensive tackle Christian Wilkins remains without a contract extension as the 2023 season approaches, the team is reportedly optimistic that it will ultimately get a deal done with the 27-year-old.
As things currently stand, the 2023 campaign is the last season in which Wilkins is under club control.
“On the extension front, the Dolphins remain optimistic they will get a deal done with defensive tackle Christian Wilkins at some point,” wrote ESPN’s Jeremy Fowler. “They’ve been working on it.”
Wilkins has shown enough over four seasons at the NFL level to convince the Dolphins that he’s a worthy investment. Now, it’s just a matter of working out the details and coming to an agreement on a new deal.
Last season, the former first-round pick had 3.5 sacks, 16 tackles for loss, seven quarterback hits and 98 combined tackles. For good measure, he added six passes defended, two forced fumbles and one fumble recovery.
Entering his fifth season, Wilkins will look to help the Dolphins make a bit of a turnaround on defense. The unit was underwhelming in the 2022 campaign, allowing 23.5 points per game (24th in the NFL).
The loss of Jalen Ramsey for several months won’t help the cause, but with some new blood around in Vic Fangio, folks are optimistic about the overall direction of Miami’s defense.
A contract extension for Wilkins has been a storyline all offseason. Several weeks ago, one agent predicted a deal worth at least $20 million annually for the Clemson University product.
Although it’s unclear where Wilkins’ extension will ultimately land from a value standpoint if it gets done, one has to imagine that he has a nice payday in his future. The 2023 campaign will likely be the last in which the Dolphins get to keep him on a bargain by NFL standards. He’s going to make about $10.8 million this season.
Wilkins and the Dolphins would presumably love nothing more than to get the extension out of the way so they can shift their focus to the upcoming campaign. Miami will open its season in September against the Los Angeles Chargers on the road.
Playing in a tough division and dealing with a difficult schedule, the Dolphins don’t have an easy road ahead of them, but it’s a safe bet that they’re up for the challenge.