2017 NFL Free Agents: Which defensive tackles might interest Dolphins?

A bunch of teams will want in on Kawann Short this spring. (Getty Images)

A bunch of teams will want in on Kawann Short this spring. (Getty Images)

The Dolphins wouldn’t seem to need much help on the defensive line considering they spent a league-high $38.9 million on that unit last year, but they’re currently on the lookout for a starting tackle.

Miami has Ndamukong Suh and Cameron Wake locked in for the upcoming season, plus the team will likely try to re-sign Andre Branch, but the other tackle spot is vacant. Unproven third-year player Jordan Phillips is the only tackle under contract other than Suh.

Here’s a look at the Dolphins’ defensive tackle situation and some of the top options in free agency:

2016 Starting defensive tackles

Ndamukong Suh (16 starts)

Pro Football Focus ranking: #4 defensive tackle

Age: 30

2017 Contract: $19.1 million salary cap hit, signed through 2020

Jordan Phillips (11 starts)

Pro Football Focus ranking: #56 defensive tackle

Age: 24

2017 Contract: $1.2 million salary cap hit, signed through 2018

Earl Mitchell (five starts)

Pro Football Focus ranking: #78 defensive tackle

Age: 29

2017 Contract: unrestricted free agent (cut by Dolphins)

Top 2017 Free Agent Defensive Tackles (* plus some less expensive options)

Kawann Short, Carolina

Pro Football Focus ranking: #3 defensive tackle

Age: 28

Contract Expectation: Earned $1.5 million last season

Nick Fairley, New Orleans

Pro Football Focus ranking: #34 defensive tackle

Age: 29

Contract Expectation: Earned $3.3 million last season

Dontari Poe, Kansas City

Pro Football Focus ranking: #59 defensive tackle

Age: 26

Contract Expectation: Earned $6.1 million last season

Johnathan Hankins, New York Giants

Pro Football Focus ranking: #72 defensive tackle

Age: 25

Contract Expectation: Earned $1.3 million last season

Tyson Alualu, Jacksonville

Pro Football Focus ranking: #74 defensive tackle

Age: 29

Contract Expectation: Earned $3 million last season

Domata Peko, Cincinnati

Pro Football Focus ranking: #106 defensive tackle

Age: 32

Contract Expectation: Earned $3.7 million last season

Paul Soliai, Carolina

Pro Football Focus ranking: unranked

Age: 33

Contract Expectation: Earned $3.9 million last season

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