MIAMI (AP) — Former first-round pick DeVante Parker will get another chance to show the Miami Dolphins he’s not a bust.
The unlucky, underachieving receiver signed an incentive-laden, two-year deal Tuesday worth up to $13 million that replaces a $9.4 million fifth-year option on his original contract.
The Dolphins had been expected to rescind the option for 2019 and let Parker become a free agent. But his agent, Jimmy Gould, said Parker loves Miami, wasn’t interested in testing the market, and is eager for a chance to blossom under new Dolphins coach Brian Flores.
“It was always DeVante’s desire to remain in Miami, and especially with a chance to work with this new coaching staff,” Gould said. “It’s like a new start for him.”
Last season Gould publicly questioned the competence of coach Adam Gase and complained about how Parker was used. Gase’s firing after the season opened the door for Parker’s return.
The 14th player taken in the 2015 draft, Parker has been plagued by injuries and has scored just nine touchdowns while making 31 starts in four seasons. Last year he had 24 catches for 309 yards and one score while missing five games because of finger and quadriceps issues.
His new deal reflected the Dolphins’ thrifty approach to free agency as the market heats up. After missing the playoffs for the 15th time in 17 years, they have begun a reboot and youth movement under Flores and acknowledge it may take several seasons to build a winner.
Rather than engage in a bidding war, they allowed Ja’Wuan James to depart this week to Denver, where he’s expected to sign a four-year, $51 million contract that makes him the highest-paid right tackle in the NFL.
Miami also declined to overpay to keep last year’s leading rusher and receiver. Running back Frank Gore reached an agreement on a $2 million, one-year contract with the Bills, and receiver Danny Amendola accepted a $5.75 million, one-year offer from the Lions.
The Dolphins did add tight end Dwayne Allen, who agreed to a $7 million, two-year contract.
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