With the draft in the review mirror and mini-camp on the horizon, We take a look at the 2015 Miami Dolphins. After another late season collapse that cost the Dolphins playoff hopes Miami went to work to revamp this roster and add some attitude. Joe Philbin’s seat is on fire and a slow start could be the cause for a early exit out of Miami. A win-now mentality is in place and owner Stephen Ross is doing his part. Signing players to big contracts and personally paying for stadium renovations is just part of the deal. Now it’s on the team to put it together and coach Philbin has the keys to the architect.
Miami definitely hit a home run by signing defensive monster Ndamukong Suh. With Cameron Wake and Oliver Vernon, not to mention DT Earl Mitchell already in place the defensive front 4 will be nasty! Signing Suh’s former teammate from Detroit, DT CJ Mosley was icing on the cake. CB was a huge issue last year aside from Brent Grimes. Signing Bobby McCain was just a way to start a position battle between him, Jamar Taylor and Will Davis. Miami also resigned S Louis Delmas, after missing the end of last season with a injury. Loosing Dion Jordan to suspension has left question-marks at linebacker. I honestly believed they would move Jordan to the outside linebacker spot, well there goes that idea. Kelvin Sheppard showed flashes which should give him the inside track at starting the season. Koa Misi will be the defensive signal caller again while hoping to avoid injury. Meanwhile rookies Jeff Luc and Mike Hull have been outstanding in rookie mini-camps and OTA’s. Three of the NFL’s top 5 defensive units will come from the AFC East and this unit is definitely one of them.
Two consecutive years of 8-8 and no playoffs and it was mainly the offense’s fault. And when I say the offense I mean the offensive line. After Brandon Albert went down for the year, Miami’s offense came to a halt. With Albert returning from injury and another 2nd year player in Juwan James anchoring the tackle spots the foundation is laid. Mike Pouncy signed a big deal and will anchor this line while they work through about a dozen other lineman during training camp.
Mike Wallace departure was due to a rumor that he quit on the team in the final game against the rival New York Jets. Well bye bye Mr Wallace, enjoy Minnesota. Receiver Brian Hartline was also released and Rashard Mattews expressed he would like out too but no movement has been made. Naturally when you cut all but one of your starting receivers, you have to reload and that’s exactly what Miami did. The Dolphins traded LB Danelle Ellerby to New Orleans for speedster Kenny Stills. Miami also brought in veteran Greg Jennings and drafted Davonte Parker in the first round. With tight end Charles Clay moving to Buffalo Miami brought in Jordan Cameron who if healthy is one of the top TE’s in football. Add that to 2nd year receiver Jarvis Landry and Tannehill should have no problem earning every penny of that $96 million dollar contract he signed. RB Lamar Miller had a decent season even with that atrocious line. Knowshawn Moreno is out and Miami drafted Jay Ajayi from Boise state. If he isn’t injury plagued then he was a steal in the fifth round.
It all comes down to Tannehill though. Offensive line issues aside- he has to take a huge step now that he is the guy. Philbin’s job is riding on this and while most Miami fans would like to see him gone, we would rather see a winning team. No pressure- because offensive coordinator Bill Lazor is going to have something special for this season. This season starts the championship climb.