A once lofty free-agent signing has morphed into a surprising cap casualty for the Dolphins.
NFL Network's Mike Garafolo reported Tuesday that Miami has informed linebacker Kyle Van Noy that he will be released after one season.
"I am surprised and disappointed in their decision. As a captain, I gave my all to the team," said Van Noy in a statement obtained by Garafolo. "I fought through a painful injury during the season, including spending a night in the hospital after a game. I was brought there to be a leader and I know my teammates looked up to and respected me. I am looking forward to making an impact on my next team, on and off the field."
Van Noy, 29, inked a four-year, $51 million contract last March, which included $30M in guaranteed money and a $12M signing bonus. The move is expected to free up about $9.7 in cap space.
A former second-round pick out of BYU, Van Noy began his career with the Lions before joining the Patriots via trade in October, 2016. While in New England, Van Noy compiled an impressive three-and-a-half year stretch that led to him being viewed as a top-notch free agent entering last offseason.
Playing under Brian Flores, his former position coach in New England, Van Noy recorded 69 tackles, six sacks and six passes defended in 14 games played (13 starts) in 2020. A three-sack, eight-tackle showing against the Bengals in Week 13 earned the veteran AFC Defensive Player of the Week honors.
Although it didn't work out in Miami, Van Noy, a well-respected guy in the locker room, will likely have numerous suitors who hope to add the two-time Super Bowl champion at a cheaper price. As for the Dolphins, regrouping with a younger, less expensive LB corps led by Jerome Baker, Shaq Lawson and Andrew Van Ginkel figures to be the new focus moving forward.