Even though free agency is coming to an end, Jeff Ireland and the front office are still in position to improve this team. For the most part, it appears to be “slim pickings” out there for talent. But in my opinion and for the right price, free agent guard Jake Scott, formerly with the Tennessee Titans, would be a great addition to the offensive line. The Dolphins have been scrutinized for failing to address any one of their big “needs” on this roster. Now is their chance to redeem themselves. The acquisition of Scott would most definitely fill a huge hole at right guard.
Currently, there are question marks and concerns on the right side of the offensive line. The Dolphins decided to not resign their eight year veteran right guard, Vernon Carey. As much as we all appreciated his services during his tenure as a Dolphin, it was time to say good bye. Similar to Carey, Miami will not retain the human turnstile that started all 16 games last year at right tackle, Marc Colombo. I don’t think anyone will argue with me about that.
In an attempt to fill these two substantial holes on the line, Miami resigned Lydon Murtha to a one year deal and signed the ten year veteran Art Hicks to a one year deal as well. As much as I like the idea of Murtha starting at right tackle next season, he has trouble staying healthy and was out all of last year with a toe injury. Thus, it’s not a good idea to put all of our eggs in the one Murtha basket.
As for Hicks, he appears to be brought on simply to add depth and competition on the line. In my opinion, I highly doubt Hicks will be starting next year considering he only started in three games with the Cleveland Browns in 2011. In fact, depending on the language of his contract, there is a possibility he may not even make the 53 man roster.
As you can see, I’m not really sold on the Hicks and Murtha transactions just yet. But, a Super Bowl winner (2007 Colts) like Jake Scott who still has plenty of gas left in the tank could be a critical piece to this whole O-line puzzle. It’s important to note that he has not a missed a single start in the last seven years. His veteran leadership and durability would not only benefit the line, but also open up other options for the team. For example, the result of this acquisition would lead to THREE potential candidates available to dedicate their skills at shoring up the right tackle position; Lydon Murtha, John Jerry, AND Nate Garner.
I just mentioned that Murtha could potentially be injury prone. But if he was to underperform or get injured, Jerry or Garner could come in and hold down the fort, right? I like the chances of at least one of these guys panning out. Regardless, I support the idea of adding depth and having three decent options at right tackle resulting from the addition of Scott to right guard.
Finally and most importantly, if the Dolphins acquire Scott in free agency it would guarantee one thing that would make almost every Phin Phan happy; Miami will NOT draft an O-lineman with their eighth pick! Wow, it felt good to type that. As much as I support LT Jake Long and the potential of C Mike Pouncey, I can’t stomach another first round pick on an O-lineman. Since Scott would fill the hole at right guard and push Murtha, Jerry, and Garner to compete for the starting right tackle position, there would be no need to draft one in the first round. Instead, Miami can pursue a franchise quarterback like Ryan Tannehill…..