Kenyan Drake — who’s been the subject of trade rumors — not traveling to Pittsburgh for Steelers game
Five Miami Dolphins players did not travel to Pittsburgh for Monday night’s game against the Steelers, but it’s very likely one of those players will be dealt by the team before Tuesday’s 4 p.m. NFL trade deadline.
Dolphins running back Kenyan Drake is the most notable player who did not make the trip, the team announced on Sunday. Drake is not injured.
The Dolphins also announced safety Reshad Jones, center Daniel Kilgore, defensive end Avery Moss and reserve offensive lineman Andrew Donnal also did not travel to Pittsburgh. Jones (chest), Kilgore (knee) and Moss (ankle) did not travel because of their injuries, while Donnal’s absence is not injury related.
— Barry Jackson (@flasportsbuzz) October 27, 2019
Drake has been the subject of the latest Dolphins trade rumors the past week as Miami hopes to trade its former 2016 third-round pick for a draft pick or another player.
Drake is in the final year of his rookie contract, and will be an unrestricted free agent after this season.
Drake and his agent attempted to negotiate a contract extension with the Dolphins in the offseason but to no avail.
Despite Drake leading the team with 174 yards rushing, the Dolphins have reduced Drake’s role in recent weeks. Former University of Miami standout Mark Walton has become Miami’s new starter while Kalen Ballage has received the bulk of goal-line opportunities on offense.
The Dolphins have held conversations with a handful of teams, one of which is reportedly the Detroit Lions, about moving scatback.
Fair value for the Drake is viewed as a late-round draft selection, or possibly a swap of picks in the earlier rounds.
Dolphins coach Brian Flores was non-committal on whether the team will retain Drake, who will make $2.025 million this year.
“Yeah I do — unless there’s some other situation that presents itself,” Flores said Thursday when asked if he expects Drake to remain with the Dolphins for the rest of the season.
Drake has seen a diminished role as of late, with Flores opting to give Walton an opportunity to start at running back.
we will never forget you, kenyan drake pic.twitter.com/HRWwcw1wtV
— josh houtz (@houtz) October 27, 2019
Drake has been the first running back off the bench to spell Walton, and has been Miami’s best pass catcher out of the backfield. But Drake has also fallen behind Ballage, second-year back, in goal-line situations, where Ballage has scored a rushing touchdown in each of the past two games.