The Miami Dolphins have added over twenty new faces to the locker room following free agency and the NFL Draft.
“Every evaluation counts,” coach Brian Flores said. “Chris and the scouting staff did a great job. We tried to improve the team in every area.”
As Miami looks to build a perennial Super Bowl contending team, nobody on the roster should feel safe.
Miami had one of the worst offensive lines in the NFL in 2019, finishing dead last in rushing and 29th in quarterback sacks allowed with 56.
The departures of Laremy Tunsil and Ja’Wuan James were hard to overcome. However, even if these bookend tackles were still on the roster, Miami would still be in need of necessary upgrades.
No team can be successful in the NFL if they can’t protect the quarterback or run the ball.
To address the dismal performance of the offensive line, Miami added the following players:
Ereck Flowers, Guard – Washington Redskins
Ted Karras, Center – New England
2020 NFL Draft
Austin Jackson, Tackle – USC
Robert Hunt, Tackle – Louisiana
Solomon Kindley, Guard – Georgia
Un-Drafted Free Agents
Jonathan Hubbard, Tackle – Northwestern State
Nick Kaltmayer, Tackle – Kansas State
Donell Stanley, Guard – South Carolina
Here is a temperature check on the seats of Miami’s offensive linemen.
Here is a Temperature Check on the Seats of Miami’s Offensive Linemen
🧊 Ice Cold – Player has nothing to worry about. The job is theirs!
😓 Heating Up – The job is theirs to lose but they are starting to feel the heat.
🔥 Hard Rock Stadium “No Shade in September” Hot! Job is as good as gone!
Selected in the 2020 Draft with the 18th overall pick, The 6-foot-5, 310-pound tackle is the youngest offensive lineman on the roster at 21 years old, meaning that the Dolphins will likely give him time to develop. On top of that, Austin Jackson has natural Left Tackle ability and has a background playing basketball and running track. Best of all, Jackson is a big guy that can move! He will have the opportunity to earn a starting job this year and at the very least he will be involved in the rotation as he develops.
Julién Davenport 😓
The only reason his seat is not hotter than it should be is because Davenport is on the last year of his contract and the aforementioned rookie, Jackson may need time to develop. Davenport came over from the Houston Texans in the Tunsil and Stills trade. If Jackson or any of the tackles struggle, the Dolphins may consider keeping Davenport on the team just to get through this year. This is a battle to keep an eye on though.
Jesse Davis 🧊
Jesse’s versatility and experience is an asset for Miami. He has the ability to play guard and tackle for the Dolphins. That aspect will provide value as the Dolphins solidify their line and work in the new pieces. Davis also signed a three-year $15 million contract extension in 2019. Miami obviously sees him as a key piece of their rebuilding process.
The second-round pick from Louisiana can play tackle or guard. This will give him plenty of options to start for the Dolphins in 2020. Robert Hunt may heat up the seat for some of the other tackles and guards on the roster.
The Dolphins signed the tackle from Northwestern State as an un-drafted free agent. We all want to see an end to quarantine, but this could be especially true for Hubbard. The Dolphins are taking a flyer on Jonathan Hubbard in an area of extreme need. He desperately needs OTAs and Pre-season to show that he should make the cut. His seat could cool in the future if things progress in that direction and he plays well.
Adam Pankey 🔥
Someone is going to be the odd man out with this much competition at the tackle spot. Pankey was claimed off of waivers in December. The rookies that were added make him very expendable. Pankey played in two games for Miami in 2019 and started one but only registered 12 total snaps.
Being an un-drafted free agent from Kansas State, all of the notes for Jonathan Hubbard should apply to him. Except they don’t! The reason being is Kaltmayer is 6-foot-8, 311 pounds. You can’t teach size! If Nick Kaltmayer shows any potential at all, Miami will continue to work with him.
Michael Deiter 🧊/😓
The 2019 3rd round draft pick started all but one game in 2019 for the Miami Dolphins. Dieter struggled, but that could be a result of attrition on the left side of the line with the exit of Laremy Tunsil. Dieter should have the chance to show that he can live up to his 3rd round selection with reinforcements joining the team. However, that could backfire for Deiter iff the new guys show him up. Chris Grier has shown that he is not afraid to admit his draft mistakes and flip a player for a “do-over” draft pick.
The Miami Dolphins traded up in the 4th round to select Solomon Kindley. This is a clear sign that he was a target of theirs and fits what they are trying to build with the offensive line. Kindley probably has pole position to fill one of the starting guard spots this year.
If Kindley is penciled in as a starting guard, the other spot is currently locked up by Ereck Flowers. If Flowers is not a starter by week one, then something went terribly wrong.
Shaq Calhoun 😓
Calhoun made the team in 2019 as an un-drafted free agent. That’s the good news. The worrisome part is he was a part of that unproductive unit in last season. Shaq will need to prove that he can contribute and be a part of the solution to the offensive line woes if he wants to keep a roster spot in Miami.
Being an un-drafted free agent in 2020, this is another player that is hoping for OTAs and preseason. The room is crowded with a lot of offensive linemen at this point and Stanley needs an opportunity to show that he belongs. A benefit for him is he can play both guard and center which may give a leg up on some of the other guys on the bubble.
Danny Isidora 🔥 🔥
This is a player that should be concerned. Isidora is coming off of an injury and entering stiff competition for a job. With a cap hit of $825,000, the Dolphins could go either way if they end up on the fence with moving on from Isidora.
Keaton Sutherland 🔥
Sutherland is another Miami Dolphin that can play multiple spots. However, he is in for the fight of his life. The starting center spot is spoken for and there is significant competition at every other spot. Keaton Sutherland’s best bet will be to try to secure the backup center spot.
Ted Karras 🧊 🧊
Miami fans will be hoping that Ted Karras will be as unmovable on the field as he is on the depth chart. Flores went and got a guy that he has won with in New England. Karras will be expected to be the piece that pulls all of the other pieces together for this offensive line that is under construction.