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Kenny Stills re-signs with Dolphins in a good deal as wide receiver market heats up

Opposing safeties beware.

NFL: New England Patriots at Miami Dolphins Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports

The Miami Dolphins are keeping their deep threat, re-signing wide receiver Kenny Stills, according to Rand Getlin. Earlier in the day, the Dolphins re-signed defensive end Andre Branch.

ESPN’s Adam Schefter had the terms of the deal:

At the NFL Combine, head coach Adam Gase sounded uncertain as to whether or not they’d be able to keep him. "I don’t know. One day I feel good about it, one day I feel like crap about it. I hate free agency,” Gase said.

He continued, “Kenny, obviously, he’d love to stay here but he’s going to stay for the right price and what’s comfortable for him and I don’t think anybody would blame him for that."

It appears the Dolphins were able to meet Stills’ price.

The wideout, who began his career in New Orleans, was eventually traded to Miami, where he joined Jarvis Landry and DeVante Parker to create one of the NFL’s most diverse receiving groups.

Stills is known for his ability to take the top off of opposing defenses. The 24-year-old receiver has tallied 20 touchdowns over his four-year NFL career, including several deep strikes. His best play in 2016 may well have been a 74-yard bomb from Ryan Tannehill, putting the Dolphins on the board in a Thursday night game against the Bengals which otherwise might’ve been a shutout.

The speedster had a career year in 2016, totaling 726 yards and nine scores on 42 catches. While the hefty contract offered to the wide receiver may seem a bit much, NFL teams have proven they’re willing to pay for speed. After all, it’s one of the only attributes coaches can’t really teach their players.

Leaving Miami seemed inevitable for Stills, who, while talented, was a complementary receiver to Landry and Parker. But Stills was an instrumental piece of Miami’s 2016 offense, helping Tannehill resurrect his career and helping Miami make its first playoff appearance since 2008.

And now, Miami will remain his home.