Dolphins Dish Out ‘Serious Cash’ to Land Popular 6-Foot-7 Talent: Report

Dolphins sign UDFA OL Bayron Matos to guaranteed contract after NFL draft.

Getty The Miami Dolphins have come to terms with South Florida offensive lineman Bayron Matos following the NFL draft.

The Miami Dolphins spent heavily on the undrafted rookie market this April, and one of their largest acquisitions was a unique one.

“Former college basketball player Bayron Matos – who has never played in a football game – is signing with the Dolphins, per source,” NFL Network insider Tom Pelissero first reported on the evening of April 27.

The following afternoon on April 28, KPRC2 NFL insider Aaron Wilson posted an update on the financials of Matos’ agreement with Miami, and the guarantees were notably high.

“One of the highest undrafted deals went to South Florida offensive lineman Bayron Matos with [the] Dolphins $22,500 signing bonus and $225,000 salary [guarantee], total [guarantee of] $247,500,” Wilson informed. “Former college basketball player has [a] great opportunity in Miami.”

Just after the news of Matos’ guarantees, Sun Sentinel Dolphins reporter David Furones commented that the “Dolphins dished out some serious cash to get undrafted OL Bayron Matos.” Keep in mind, most undrafted rookies don’t get any guaranteed money, and it’s rare that you see a UDFA prospect get over $200,000 upon signing.

Typically, guarantees this high stem from a bidding war with other teams around the league, and that would make sense considering how popular Matos was ahead of the NFL draft.

“Offensive lineman Bayron Matos @USFFootball (6-7, 313) [and a] native of Dominican Republic [is] invited to [the] NFL Draft 3rd day as [an] International Pathway prospect,” Wilson reported on April 16. He added that Matos conducted a top-30 visit with the Cincinnati Bengals and private workouts with the Jacksonville Jaguars, Tampa Bay Buccaneers, New York Jets, Dolphins, Indianapolis Colts, Arizona Cardinals, Denver Broncos, New York Giants, Kansas City Chiefs, Cleveland Browns, Baltimore Ravens and Dallas Cowboys.

New Dolphins UDFA Signing Bayron Matos Made Impression at South Florida Pro Day

If you’re wondering why so many NFL teams are interested in a college basketball player who has never actually appeared in a real football game, his pro day had something to do with that.

Wilson relayed that the 6-foot-7 athlete “delivered [an] impressive workout” at the South Florida pro day on March 20.

Matos ran the 40-yard dash twice, posting times of 4.90 seconds and 4.96 seconds. He also put up 17 reps on the bench, with a 9-5 broad jump, 28-inch vertical, 4.77-second short shuttle and 7.64-second three-cone drill (per Wilson).

Those traits provide a building block for NFL coaches, and although no one spent a draft pick on Matos, clearly plenty of franchises felt that they might be able to develop the youngster into something special.

Dolphins 2024 Draft Class Gets Mixed Reviews From NFL Experts

USA Today Dolphins Wire compiled all of Miami’s draft grades from around the NFL community on April 28. Below were the results:

Running back Jaylen Wright and wide receiver Malik Washington earned rave reviews from several of the analysts, including Farrar.

“They got Jaylen Wright, one of the most explosive backs in this class, who can also get grimy yards to a degree. And I don’t know how they stole Malik Washington in the sixth round,” Farrar voiced, “but adding his house-call speed to this thing could be ridiculous.”

He added that he really likes Patrick Paul as a plus pass-blocker — an opinion Reuter and Sikkema shared with and PFF.

Having said that, Miami earned negatives from certain experts for ignoring their needs on the interior offensive and defensive line.

“I like many of the prospects the Dolphins picked, but their plan was somewhat confusing,” Trapasso stated with CBS Sports. “[Chop] Robinson was my EDGE1. Sensible. Paul is the opposite of a scheme fit for what [Mike] McDaniel asks of his blockers. Wright is a rocket when given space, which is fun, but now the running back room is super crowded.”

It’ll be interesting to see how Miami plans to address roster holes at guard and defensive tackle in the coming weeks.

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