ORLANDO—There’s rarely a clean exit in sports that leaves both sides happy, and Jarvis Landry’s run with the Dolphins didn’t seem to end well leading up to them shipping him to Cleveland.
The parts that everybody saw were the confrontations late in the season. Landry blew up at Gase late in the Christmas Eve loss at Kansas City, then got himself ejected the next week in an ugly altercation with the Bills and a referee. Gase pulled no punches on the latter, publicly calling it one of the most embarrassing displays he’s ever seen in a game.
Their relationship has been murky over the past month, though Landry flatly denied having any problem with Gase when the Browns introduced him with a press conference.
Gase said this morning they had a good relationship through the end and that the decision came down to financial considerations.
“I think when you get to that free agency point, it’s not as easy as you think,” he said. “You’re talking the amount of money somebody else wants and what you think … Not necessarily what they deserve, but how it can work for your organization. We just couldn’t find a way to meet in the middle there.”
Landry’s contract demands were higher than the Dolphins initially anticipated, and they prevented him from hitting the open market by placing the franchise tag on him. That set him up on a one-year deal for approximately $16 million, which is the contract he’s playing under in Cleveland.
The Browns brought him and quarterback Tyrod Taylor in together and already had some decent pieces in place offensively. With a bevy of picks in the upcoming draft, they’re a team to watch for a big turnaround this year. If they pull it off, Gase expects Landry to be a big part of it.
“He’ll do well,” Gase said. “He’s around a good group of guys now. That group is going to be good. He’ll do what he’s always done. He’ll have a successful season again and we’ll just see how it plays out for him.”
When pressed specifically on their relationship and whether there was a fracture at the end of the season, Gase said no.
“I thought we (had a good relationship),” he said. “The last time that we spoke, everything was positive. It’s just the business side of everything. It’s just not very fun.”
Landry was originally a second-round pick by the Dolphins and went on to make the Pro Bowl three times in four years. He put up 400 catches, 4,038 yards and 22 touchdowns. He led the NFL with a Dolphins-record 112 receptions last season, and his career total in that category is the most by any player in league history over their first four seasons.
Miami dealt him to the Browns in exchange for a fourth-round pick this year and a seventh-rounder in 2019.
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