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Stephen Ross calls getting a No. 1 receiver the top Dolphins offseason priority


We aren’t even at the halfway point of the 2012 season, but the Dolphins are already putting together their plans for the offseason.

That was the message owner Stephen Ross sent to team employees at a meeting last month, according to Mike Beradino of the South Florida Sun-Sentinel. Ross told the crowd that acquiring a No. 1 wide receiver would be the team’s “top offseason priority” and that they would do “whatever it takes” to land such a player because it would help quarterback Ryan Tannehill.

As Beradino points out, the last time the Dolphins wound up trading for Brandon Marshall the last time they made similar signals. With a fair amount of cap space and five picks early in next April’s draft, the Dolphins would seem to be well positioned to make a big move.

Ross’ comments came before Brian Hartline’s 253-yard game against the Cardinals. While the team is trying to sign Hartline to an extension, that probably wouldn’t stand in the way of bringing a top receiver into the fold to round out the offense. The fact that Tannehill has made such a quick transition to the pro game and that Hartline has flourished in his current role only makes the possible acquisition seem like a better idea because it would accelerate the offense’s growth without needing to be the only option on the field.

It would be interesting if Wes Welker, who can be a free agent after the year, winds up on their radar. Welker’s career really started in Miami after a brief stay in San Diego, but the Dolphins wound up dealing him the New England for a pair of draft picks. You know what Welker’s done since then, but he’s hardly the only potential name on the market. Dwayne Bowe, Mike Wallace and Greg Jennings, who played for head coach Joe Philbin when both were in Green Bay, could also be on the open market.