Friday, May 4, 2012
Dolphins: One big question
By James Walker
Who will step up at wide receiver?
The Miami Dolphins have put themselves in a tough spot. They want to run an up-tempo West Coast offense this year, but wide receiver is probably the Dolphins' weakest position.
Dolphins rookie head coach Joe Philbin said several times that he doesn't believe in having a dominant No. 1 receiver. That was one of the primary reasons the Dolphins traded Pro Bowl receiver Brandon Marshall. But that doesn't mean Philbin can get by without quality players at the position.
Philbin had talented receivers during his five years as offensive coordinator with the Green Bay Packers. Greg Jennings doesn't get as much press as others at his position, but he's very good. Jordy Nelson and Donald Driver are solid, productive veterans, and Jermichael Finley is one of the league's top receiving tight ends.
There is nothing to resemble that level of talent in Miami. Dolphins top receiver Brian Hartline is no Jennings. Davone Bess and Legedu Naanee do not fit Philbin's West Coast scheme like Nelson and Driver. Miami tight end Anthony Fasano cannot stretch the field like Finley.
Miami surprisingly ignored the receiver position until the sixth and seventh rounds of the draft last weekend. That's probably not going to fix this problem for QBs Matt Moore, David Garrard and rookie Ryan Tannehill.