Miami Dolphins: Rookie Report 1.0
Ja’Wuan James our 1st round pick has made strides in the right direction. Thus far he has had an average off-season but this is expected for any rookie entering the league. While it has been hard to gauge where James has excelled at, he has the mentality to be a good OT at this level. Most days he is lined against Wake which is good for the growth of James since Wake, is one of the best edge rushers in the league today. Expect small and steady growth from James going into this preseason where he can be more aggressive.
Jarvis Landry was selected late in the second rd pick and has turned some heads in camp thus far. He has been praised for his glue like hands and showing the ability to gain yardage after the catch. Landry has made strides both on the field and off as the media and teammates alike give high praise for the former LSU WR. Right now he has been not only been an active #2 teamer but showing small strides in the return game too.
Our third rounder Billy Turner from North Dakota State has had a normal offseason thus far. Nothing wowing or disappointing, though has been praised for his run blocking and ability to line up at OT or OG. He has had issues with the game speed but that is expected for any rookie going into the NFL. From what I’ve gathered Turner has a promising future and as of now has been a #2 offensive line player with a high ceiling for growing.
If one rookie hasn’t been up to even par it’s our 4th round pick Walt Aikens. So far most people have said that Aikens is struggling with the speed of the NFL and seems to be a step behind. I am not worried at this point about the Liberty stand out. On a positive note he has been one the best players in man to man coverage out of most DBs on the field. This is a promising ability and can help shape other parts of his game later. Look for him to bounce back in Training Camp and turn some heads.
Our 1st fifth round pick Arthur Lynch has had a promising start to his 1st NFL camps. The former Bulldog has been a buzz in the battle of our deep TE rotation. The media has revealed that he has been nasty with his blocks and shown soft hands in the passing attack. He has shown value in special teams too, which is important for any rookie trying to help himself make a roster. It has been hard to say where Lynch falls in the depth chart but his value and stock are upward after a great OTA and minicamp.
Jordan Tripp has been extremely popular among fans and media members so far. The 171st overall pick seems to be making quiet the buzz to push the vet LBs on our team. With that being said Tripp has a very bright future with the Miami Dolphins. If expectations aren’t lived up by our vets this season, Tripp will be called on to fill that aggressive need. Look for Tripp to show his aggressive play during TC where hitting is allowed.
Our sixth rounder Matt Hazel from Coastal Carolina was a confusing pick for most media members and fans alike. Hazel does have some promising upside as a player. So far he has been decent but not outstanding which again is expected for a rookie in the NFL regardless how good he might be. He has made some big plays through the air only to be negated by some dropped passes. Hazel isn’t a surefire 53 guy so he must shine in TC and preseason to impress coaches to get that “last” WR spot.
The final pick of the Miami draft was a huge surprise for many fans but I do agree with this pick in fullness. Terrence Fede, defensive end, from Marist College has some unique upside. He could be an effective rookie in his 1st year and I feel that Miami did a good job building on the strengths of the team. So far he has impressive coaches and media alike with his athletic ability and shows his disruptive behavior often in the pass rush game. I fully believe that he can make the team with tools to be groomed into a valuable role player on the deep defensive line.
Many undrafted rookies are making strides in the right direction to make the team and help in many different ways. Here are the undrafted rookies that are making themselves known so far throughout camp.
Gator Hoskins, has been a great looking H-Back, spend some time with the #1 group and seems to be a Charles Clay 2.0
Orleans Darkwa has a long shot to making the team but has shown aggressive running but hands have been an issue
Brock Jensen has been ok but not bad, needs to make bigger strides in Training Camp to have a chance, and lacks arm strength
Anthony Johnson- is a mid level draft talent, that has been disruptive on the DL and has a good chance to be a role player with upside
Tevin Mims- Has some good developing talent as a DE but the battle is purely uphill for him, has been active in the pass rush attack
Rantavious Wooten- has shown his value in the return game and has a chain mover in the passing attack
Hopefully more of our rookie class and undrafted rookies can make strides in training camp and secure some spots in the final roster. We will keep you posted on the progress of our rookie class and the strides they are making.