Thursday, May 15, 2014
Miami Dolphins' post-draft losers
By James Walker
On Wednesday, we examined the Dolphins' winners following the NFL draft.
Now, here are three draft losers on the roster in Miami:
1. Veteran wide receivers: The Dolphins already had a bevy of wide receivers on their roster. So why did they draft two more in second-round pick Jarvis Landry and sixth-round pick Matt Hazel? Dolphins general manager Dennis Hickey looked at a lot of receivers during the pre-draft process. Therefore, it was no surprise when Miami took a receiver high with its second-round pick. Landry is a natural slot receiver who is tough and has dependable hands. He will push Rishard Matthews and the injured Brandon Gibson, who is coming off major knee surgery. Receivers like Damian Williams, Armon Binns and Ryan Spadola are on the hot seat. Miami currently has 10 wide receivers -- and not all will make the 53-man roster.
2. Jason Fox, RT: The former Detroit Lions offensive tackle and Miami Hurricane signed with the Dolphins for an opportunity to start. When Fox joined the team as a free agent, right tackle was wide open. But that job closed in a hurry when Miami spent a first-round pick – No. 19 overall – on Ja'Wuan James. Dolphins head coach Joe Philbin most likely will say it’s an open competition at right tackle through offseason workouts, training camp and the preseason. But Miami drafted James with every expectation that he will be ready to start in Week 1. James had 49 consecutive starts in college at the University of Tennessee and was one of the draft's most NFL-ready offensive linemen. This is all bad news for Fox.
3. Dallas Thomas, OL: Miami’s 2013 third-round pick had a redshirt year last season. Thomas arrived with a pre-existing shoulder injury that slowed his development and he never got on track. The Dolphins split time with Thomas at guard and offensive tackle his rookie season and he couldn't master either position. When asked at the owners meetings, Philbin said the team still hasn’t figured out Thomas' true position at the NFL level. Unfortunately for Thomas, the Dolphins drafted a similar player in the third round this year in Billy Turner out of North Dakota State. Turner also is a tweener. He played offensive tackle in college but is most likely at guard in Miami’s offense. Turner is going to make the roster as a rookie draft pick. That puts Thomas in the hot seat if he doesn't show major strides in Year 2.