According to the Miami Herald, the offer would have sent Clowney AND a first-round pick to the Dolphins, and in exchange, the Texans would have acquired offensive lineman Laremy Tunsil. Apparently, the only reason the deal didn’t go down is because the Dolphins wanted more than that. According to the Herald, Miami also wanted another “high draft pick” thrown into the deal, and understandably, the Texans balked at the Dolphins’ asking price.
The Texans have one of the worst offensive lines in the NFL, and the fact that they’re willing to give up Clowney and a first-round pick for a starting left tackle shows just how desperate they are. During the 2018 season, Texans quarterback Deshaun Watson was sacked a league-high 62 times.
Although the Dolphins sound slightly crazy for turning the deal down, new coach Brian Flores might not have had much of a choice. According to a separate report from the Herald, multiple players in the team’s locker room have said they “would revolt” if the Dolphins were to trade away Tunsil. With the possibility of a full on mutiny possibly hanging over his head, that could explain why Flores turned down the Texans’ offer.
Of course, even if the Dolphins had accepted the trade, there’s no guarantee it would have happened, and that’s because Clowney has almost all the leverage in this situation. Since he was hit with the franchise tag back in March, that means the Texans can’t legally trade him until he’s actually signed the tag, which he still hasn’t done. Basically, if Clowney doesn’t want to be traded somewhere, he can just not sign his franchise tag.
Making things even more complicated is the fact that Clowney doesn’t have an agent and the Texans don’t have a general manager. Clowney actually fired his agent at some point in the past week, which means he’s the only one who’s going to have any input on where he lands, and right now, it seems like he doesn’t want to land in Miami.
Besides the Dolphins, the Texans have also reportedly had trade talks with the Seahawks, Eagles, Redskins and Jets. Wherever Clowney ends up, he’s going to make a lot of money. Under terms of the franchise tag, Clowney will be guaranteed a total of $15.97 million for 2019 once he signs his franchise tender.