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Miami Dolphins sign RB C.J. Anderson to offer sheet

The Miami Dolphins have signed running back C.J. Anderson to a four-year offer sheet.

Anderson is a restricted free agent so the Denver Broncos have five days to match the offer in order to keep the player. If they do not match the offer, the player joins the Dolphins with no draft compensation.

I'm told the Dolphins have structured the deal to make it difficult for the Broncos to match. (No idea of specifics). The price point for Anderson was to be between the $4-$5 million per year average. That means his deal will be between $16-$20 million total.

[Update: Multiple reports at CBSSports and ESPN are saying the offer sheet is for $18 million so the Dolphins landed exactly where their budget led them. The average is $4.5 million per year. Again, the structure (early money rather than backloaded) is important for the Dolphins because it makes it harder for Denver to match.]

The Broncos brought this on themselves. They could have tendered Anderson with second-round draft pick compensation for $2.533 million for one year. Instead they tendered him at the original round compensation of $1.671 million. Do not be surprised if Anderson's first-year cap number is in the $5-$6 million range.

The Dolphins had $39.5 million in salary cap room this morning, per the NFL Players Association. The Denver Broncos started the day with $17.1 million in salary cap space and are hunting for a starting quarterback.

The Dolphins wanted incumbent back Lamar Miller back for 2016 but once they recognized the player's price was potentially $2-$3 million more on a per year average than they were willing to offer, they recognize Miller would not return. Miller signed a contract with the Houston Texans that pays an average of $6.5 million per year.