Dolphins Release Left Tackle Branden Albert

Jan 1 2017 Miami Gardens FL USA Miami Dolphins offensive tackle Branden Albert is introduced before an NFL football game against the New England Patriots at Hard Rock Stadium. Mandatory Credit Reinhold Matay-USA TODAY Sports

The Dolphins carried him on injured reserve all season, but the team has four proven starters - Byron Maxwell, Xavien Howard, Tony Lippett and Bobby McCain - presently on the roster. Albert never played 16 games in three seasons in Miami, including missing four starts last season. Albert arrived in Miami with back issues and they didn't simply leave his body because of the hot South Florida sun.

And so the Dolphins will keep Albert for now, waiting to see whether a trade can be worked out. If he isn't healthy then that productive offensive line isn't so productive. Why?

It's been widely believed that the Dolphins were grooming Tunsil to be their long term answer at left tackle. And that is number two on our list.

Tunsil is expected to take over Albert's position.

Miami will move 2016 first-round pick Laremy Tunsil to left tackle to replace Albert.

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The Dolphins could potential clear an additional $4.2 million by releasing strong side linebacker Koa Misi, but the neck surgery he underwent in October could complicate matters considering he's not fully health from a football related injury, and might be forced into retirement because of the seriousness of his neck injury.

Albert should have plenty of available options on the open market, but Williams' career is on the downtick. If they actually commit to finding a solution it shouldn't be a problem. Brought in as a pass rusher, the former No. 1 overall pick collected just 1 1/2 sacks last season and was set to cost the Dolphins $10.5 million against the cap in 2017.

Per a league source with knowledge of the issue, it seems there is sudden and significant interest from at least one and perhaps other teams in acquiring Albert.

The long, unusual trip for enigmatic ex-Texans outside linebacker Mario Williams keeps rolling along.

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