Could have an immediate impact for saban....
DAVIE, Florida (Ticker) - Veteran defensive tackle Dan Wilkinson will clog the middle for coach Nick Saban after being jilted by Rod Marinelli.
The Miami Dolphins on Monday signed Wilkinson, who was released by the Detroit Lions on May 22.
Financial terms were not disclosed, but the Miami Herald is reporting that Wilkinson signed a three-year contract.
Green Bay, Oakland and Baltimore had also expressed interest in the 33-year-old Wilkinson.
New Lions coach Marinelli prefers fast defensive tackles with the ability to penetrate the backfield over massive ones. That essentially spelled the end for Wilkinson with the Lions.
But Saban, the Dolphins coach, was shopping for a defensive tackle to rotate with run stuffer Keith Traylor, who turns 37 in September. Miami fluctuates a 3-4 front with a 4-3 alignment.
The 6-4, 353-pound Wilkinson started all 48 games for the Lions over the last three seasons.
The No. 1 overall pick in the 1994 draft, Wilkinson played four seasons with the Cincinnati Bengals before being traded to the Washington Redskins in 1997. He spent five years with Washington before signing with the Lions in 2003.
In Detroit, Wilkinson was paired inside with Shaun Rogers, who made the Pro Bowl each of the last two seasons.
In his 12-year career, Wilkinson compiled 455 tackles and 54 sacks.