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Is Miami Vonta Leach’s best option?
Pro Bowl FB Vonta Leach paid a visit to the Miami Dolphins yesterday. But he went home without signing a contract and, to the best of my knowledge, doesn’t have a visit lined up with Houston yet.
Miami has cap room ($17+ mil), but my guess is they only offered him a one year deal since he’s 31. That would make him one of the oldest players on the team.
Leach was due $3 mil base salary in Baltimore and also had $1.33 mil in signing bonus money against the cap. The Ravens wanted to renegotiate with Leach, but they couldn’t agree to a number so Leach was cut.
The Texans presently have $3.7 mil in cap space and therefore can’t offer him too much more than the veteran minimum, $940k for veterans with 11 or more years, unless they sign him to a multiyear deal. Even then, the bonus would have to be smaller than Leach would probably like.
Of course, if the Texans think Leach would really contribute to their pursuit ofa SuperBowl(andtheir window won’t stay open forever) then they could restructureanother player’s contract to land Leach. Andre Johnson would be a prime target with a base salary of $9.5 mil – just convert some of that to a bonus.Alternatively, Leach might also value the opportunity to get a ring and play for less money in Houston.Leach knows Houston having played there previously, so I don’t know if the lack of a visit is significant or not.
Working against a Houston-Leach reunion is the fact that Houston signed free agent Greg Jones earlier this year to a $1 mil contract ($240k guaranteed). Jones isn’t the blocker that Leach is, but he is better at running and catching the ball. No way Houston carries 2 fullbacks.
Given Miami’s track record with free agents this offseason, my guess is they offered $1 to $2 mil on a one year deal.
Leach obviously wasn’t ready to take that since he returned home. Question is will another team like the Giants or Ravens offer him similar money, or will Leach want to sit out camp to see if someone gets hurt on a contender and call Leach’s number? Given his age and the relative lack of respect FBs get, IMHO Leach would be wise to take the money on the table.
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