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Dolphins Needs Assuming Everyone on the Roster Stays

 
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Black Dolphins


Joined: 09 Apr 2006
Posts: 194
PostPosted: Mon Feb 11, 2013 12:00 am    Post subject: Dolphins Needs Assuming Everyone on the Roster Stays Reply with quote

The Dolphins are loaded with draft picks and cap room this offseason. The primary reason we have so much cap room available is because a lot of our starters are set to become free agents. I thought it would be practical to look at where our needs are before free agency and the draft. By understanding how our positions grade out now, we will have a better idea of how important our free agents are, and how big of a need we will have when some of them do not return.

Letís assume that all of the players on the roster were returning next year, and the only method where we were going to improve the team was through the draft, where we have nine picks (12, 42, 54, 77, 82, plus roughly 108, 139, 201, and 208). For example, assume Jake Long, Sean Smith, Brian Hartline etc. would all be back. On a scale of 1 to 5 (no decimals), with 1 being a minimal need and 5 being a gaping hole on the roster, how would you evaluate each position?

[b]Offense:[/b]
[b]QB- 1[/b]
We used the 8th overall pick last year on Tannehill, who is expected to be our QB for a long time. Moore is arguably the best backup in the league. Devlin is a nice developmental guy.
[b]RB- 1[/b]
Reggie Bush is a decent starter. Daniel Thomas was a 2nd rounder two years ago, and has looked good when healthy (although he is often hurt). Lamar Miller was a 4th rounder last year and looked promising in his limited reps last year. Marcus Thigpen and Jonas Gray provide depth.
[b]FB- 2[/b]
Jorvorskie Lane looked average. Clay sometimes plays here.
[b]WR- 5[/b]
The biggest need on the roster and itís not even close. None of our wide outs are difference makers. Hartline works as a second option or a really good third, and Bess is good in the slot. All of the other guys are question marks. Moore is a good special teams guy, but not much else. Mathews is a project; he looked OK in limited snaps, but the jury is still out. Binns is another project who is inconsistent. Fuller and Tyms are pretty irrelevant. The bottom line is we absolutely need a top guy, and possibly two to add to the roster.
[b]TE- 3[/b]
This was a tough position to grade. Fasano is consistently average, being a solid blocker, and a decent pass catcher, but certainly not a playmaker. We invested a 3rd rounder last year on Egnew, who [inappropriate/removed] the bed this year, making the position a question mark. Does he improve his play this offseason, or does he stay the same? If itís the latter, we need a new tight end; if itís the former, we donít. Charles Clay also sometimes plays here. Kyle Miller is pretty irrelevant.
[b]T- 2[/b]
Although Jake Long doesnít really fit the ZBS, he is still a good tackle (when healthy). We invested a relatively early 2nd rounder last year on Jon Martin, who had an OK rookie year, but should improve next year with a full offseason to improve strength and technique. Nate Garner is a fine backup, and is versatile. Not sure about Yeatman, Brown, and McDonald.
[b]G- 2[/b]
This is debatable. I think Incognito and Jerry are decent, but donít fit the scheme perfectly. An improvement would be nice, but not crucial. Not sure about Chandler Burden.
[b]C- 1[/b]
We invested the 12th overall pick on Pouncey two years ago, and he looks like a stud. Samuda works as a backup. Weíre fine here.

[b]Defense:[/b]
[b]DE- 2[/b]
Cameron Wake is a stud and probably our best player. Odrick is solid, and Vernon showed promise his rookie year. I expect him to make a jump next year. We also have Derrick Shelby for depth.
[b]DT- 2[/b]
The combination of Starks and Soliai is one of the best in the league at the position. McDaniel has been decent as a backup, and Randall and Alecxih provide depth.
[b]LB- 2[/b]
The combination of Dansby, Burnett, and Misi has been solid. Trusnik, Kaddu, Freeny, and Spitler are the backups, with Kaddu a 5th rounder last year who should make an improvement next year. The biggest issue here is the age of Dansby and Burnett, and we could also use better depth.
[b]CB- 3[/b]
Sean Smith is one starter; after 4 years, it looks like he is a decent, but not great corner. Richard Marshall is the other starter; he was good enough that we felt comfortable trading Vontae, but he was hurt most of the year, so itís hard to get a good read on how well he will perform in the future. Dmitri Patterson is a wildcard, and we also have Nolan Carroll, Bryan McCann, Julian Posey, DeíAndre Presley, and RJ Stanford. Marshall being healthy should help, but we could still use an improvement, especially as the league is shifting to a passing offense and a third corner is often on the field.
[b]S- 2[/b]
Reshad Jones showed major improvements this year, and looks like a keeper and possible playmaker in the secondary as a SS. Chris Clemons is alright. Jimmy Wilson, Jon Amaya, Tyrone Culver and Kelcie McCray provide mediocre depth.

[b]Special Teams:[/b]
[b]K- 2[/b]
Dan Carpenter is pretty average, but is one of the highest paid kickers in the game. We also had Nate Kaeding at the end of the year.
[b]P- 1[/b]
Brandon Fields was one of the best punters this year, and is definitely a keeper.
[b]LS- 1[/b]
John Denney has been our long snapper for years, and has done a great job.

[b]How Positional Needs Change based off of who leaves in Free Agency:[/b]
If Matt Moore leaves, QB moves from a 1 to a 2
If Reggie Bush leaves, RB moves from a 1 to a 2
If Brian Hartline leaves, WR stays at 5 and becomes even more of a pressing need
If Jake Long leaves, T moves from a 2 to a 4, and if Nate Garner leaves as well, it becomes a 5
If Anthony Fasano leaves, TE moves from a 3 to a 5, unless Egnew is making major strides
If Randy Starks leaves and Jared Odrick is moved to DT, DT stays at 2 and DE moves to 3
If Randy Starks leaves and Jared Odrick stays at DE, then DT moves to a 3 if McDaniel stays and a 4 if McDaniel leaves and DE stays at 2
If Sean Smith leaves, CB moves from a 3 to a 5
If Chris Clemons leaves, S moves from a 2 to a 3
Any potential free agent not mentioned here is a backup and I am not too concerned about replacing any of them, thus the grades wonít change based off what happens with them.

[b]In terms of overall skill of our potential free agents, Iíd rank them as:[/b]
Tier 1- Jake Long, Randy Starks
Tier 2- Sean Smith, Brian Hartline, Reggie Bush
Tier 3- Anthony Fasano, Chris Clemons, Matt Moore
Tier 4- Nate Garner, Tony McDaniel etc.

The bottom line is our roster is full of average players, with a few good ones sprinkled in. The biggest thing the team needs are playmakers. Wake is our only playmaker. Tannehill and Jones have the potential to become playmakers, and Pouncey is a stud, although not really a playmaker as he plays C. We also have a couple of good players signed for next year (Soliai, Dansby, Fields). The 12th overall pick gives us an excellent shot to find another playmaker; it doesnít seem like a good idea to trade down from it, if anything, Iíd say trade up. We have plenty of other draft picks to find good, cheap players who can replace a lot of the guys set to become FAís. The roughly $40 million weíll have in cap room needs to be used to fit a couple of our needs, and especially get a couple more playmakers.
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Jaytotha


Joined: 27 Jan 2008
Posts: 4461
Location: Spokane Valley, Wa
PostPosted: Mon Feb 11, 2013 12:07 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I believe that this years cap space was planned. We did not do a lot of spending last year in the Offseason. I do think we are a team of average players and we need playmakers.
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Blagasse67


Joined: 04 Feb 2009
Posts: 11319
Location: Delaware
PostPosted: Mon Feb 11, 2013 9:03 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Jaytotha wrote:
I believe that this years cap space was planned. We did not do a lot of spending last year in the Offseason. I do think we are a team of average players and we need playmakers.


I think you are right. I honestly think that they didn't spend last year for a reason
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ViolentMonk71


Joined: 06 May 2005
Posts: 3766
Location: Don Shula's front porch
PostPosted: Mon Feb 11, 2013 9:11 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Blagasse67 wrote:
Jaytotha wrote:
I believe that this years cap space was planned. We did not do a lot of spending last year in the Offseason. I do think we are a team of average players and we need playmakers.


I think you are right. I honestly think that they didn't spend last year for a reason


May have been a smarter move....Philbin can now go after the guys he wants for his system and team. He has had a season of experience to evaluate the players on this team, to see what his QB is capable of and to see what kinf of team he wants to build. They can now lay down a plan of specific targets to sign, court, and draft. Signing some big names last off-season would have been more dangerous especially considering they could have spent a boat load of cash for a player that may not fit the system or plays to the schemes strength (Jake Long comes to mind....).
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