Yes, I do remember the Zach Thomas, Jason Taylor days, but our Line backing core is in much better shape now that it has been; ever.
I would take Karlos Dansby over Zach Thomas any day of the week. I have never seen a LB that efficiently and effectively roams and covers the field as much as he does.
I have never played LB, but seeing what Karlos brings to the table is crazy. When Dansby was brought in for a free agent visit, I would have loved to been a fly on the wall, listening to Nolan and Dansby talk D.
What Nolan love best about his starting linebacker is that, Dansby can play all aspects of the position:
We have seen Dansby play the rover meaning he is lined up next to the OLB.
We have seen Dansby play the Tiger, which was JT old position.
We have seen Dansby play the MIKE, which is our starting MLB.
If you look at Dansby stats this year, he is projected to have over 121 tackles and 2FF.
Extracted from ESPN.Com: http://sports.espn.go.com/nfl/players/profile?playerId=5558
This is sick! You always want you LB to have over 100 tackles, and let’s face it, anything over that is icing over the cake. Dansby has already provided a sack and a forced fumble, but his presence has always been felt by the opposing O…
Our secondary is starting to gel! I was a fan of Vontae Davis when he played in college, and now he is starting to make his presence known to the entire league, which is not a surprise to any of us. Davis brings with him something in which we haven’t had since Sam Madison, a tackler on the corner. Yes Sam Madison, basically threw his body at the legs of the opposing player, but he still made the tackle.
Davis presence on the back end rush is known by the NFL. Davis will not shy away from contact and will literally hit you in the mouth. Last week we saw that huge hit on the Titans RB, on the 3rd and 1 play. Davis can stand up any second stringer RB that we would play, and is always around the ball to ‘piggy’ back on tackles.
Looking at his stats at the half way point, the only thing that is decreasing is his INT
EXTRACTED FROM ESPN.Com: http://sports.espn.go.com/nfl/players/profile?playerId=12424
But let’s be honest here, that is due to the limited times that QBs are throwing in his direction.
We finally have the cover corners we had back in the day. Sean Smith and Vontae Davis are the next coming of Sam Madison and Patrick Surtain.
Expect both our young corners to obtain better stats than our formers Dolphins due to Nolan. When Surtain and Madison played, we employed a 4-3 defense which was a lot like Tampa’s cover 2….with Nolan in the fold, we are blitzing corners, throwing Ninja defense, sky coverages etc.
The game has evolved, and Nolan is making sure our players evolve with him.
Now for all the talk around our starting safeties, I have to say, we are making some progress. If we would have made the push to sign OJ, or made a better offer to Rolle, we would have had one of the wickedest (yes it’s a word) ball-hawking secondary’s not only in the conference, but the league.
However, I do think Chris Clemons has done an adequate job of playing on the field. Honestly I want to see more of our 5th round pick Rasheed Jones. Based on what he did last game, he deserves more opportunities. Counting the last 5 games, I have seen missed tackles (see Chris Johnson TD) and missed INTs from Clemons (Cincy game)….what’s the risk of putting Jones in?
We should at least start thinking about this idea in our Dime/nickel/sky formations.
Yes Chris Clemons had a bone rattling hit on Moss that caused an incomplete pass, but didn’t Jones have a sack and almost two INTs in one quarter of play?
That’s impressive…or as some would say…wicked
Two words – WAKE QUAKE
This prospect of ours is quick, agile, dominant and nasty. What Nolan is implementing is a copy cat of what we saw with Elvis Durmenvil last year.
Wake is explosive on the line of scrimmage. Joey Porter and Jason Taylor said it best, ‘he’s got good cartilages’ in those knees’. What we need to start doing more of for Wake, is to move him around. Very similar to what we saw with JT in the past few seasons.
Just like the other two key players on our D (Dansby, Davis) opposing offensives have to start game planning for Wake. He is no longer our best kept secret.
The only issue we have seen with his break out party is contract talk. Wake is signed for 4 years, 4 million dollar deal….and let’s be honest if Wake goes over 10 sacks this year, he will be holding out for a fat contract. Truth be told, we need him in our line up. Who else besides Dansby can we plug in and obtain that type of pass rush?
Misi? Not yet
Time to pay the man. We have made great to outstanding leverages within our salary cap, and I can only hope that our front office will continue to develop internal prospects and deliver a reward. Look at what we did with Bess, I hope we do the same with Wake.
By implementing these types of reward programs, it entices prospects to want to play with the Dolphins. If you develop into our system and grasp our knowledge, you will be rewarded.
What prospect wouldn’t want to grow in this system?
Put all that together and you got a formula or a recipe for this team to be a sick, wicked and nasty