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Sept 23, 2012; Miami Gardens, FL, USA; Miami Dolphins cornerback Richard Marshall (31) protests a pass interference penalty in a game against the New York Jets at Sun Life Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Robert Mayer-USA TODAY Sports

After Signing Grimes, Are The Miami Dolphins Done Adding Corners?


 

Recently, the Miami Dolphins finally added a corner to the impressive free agent haul the team was able to reel in this season. Fans have been begging for Dolphins’ General Manager, Jeff Ireland, to sign a veteran corner to boost the secondary. He did just that when he agreed to terms with 29 year-old free agent, Brent Grimes, on a one-year, $5.5 million deal.

Brent Grimes, a former Atlanta Falcon, was one of the league’s better corners on the market. During his 59-game tenure with the Falcons, Grimes reeled in 13 balls and batted 56 balls down. That being said, Grimes is also coming off an Achilles injury that limited his 2012 season to one game – Grimes tore his Achilles in the season opener against the Kansas City Chiefs.

 

The hope remains in play that Grimes can get himself back to competing at a high level for the Phins this season. If Grimes can get himself back to his 2010 form in which he tallied 87 tackles, while also reeling in 5 interceptions, then the team has added one of the league’s top corners.

 

Even so, are the Miami Dolphins done adding players to the secondary?

 

No. The team is far from done adding players to the secondary.

 

The safety position is all but locked up at this point. Do not expect Miami to draft a safety high – although adding one in the mid to late rounds would not be a bad idea (Bacarri Rambo or Robert Lester, please). Chris Clemons and Reshad Jones formed one of the league’s best safety duos last season – ranking towards the top of the league in coverage and run support. Jimmy Wilson, entering his third season with the team, will see a little of this and a little of that in the secondary. Wilson seems to be better suited in a dime or nickel-back role; but can also play a little safety if need be. Kelcie McCray is a player the team is incredibly high on. After suffering a season-ending injury, McCray should be healthy entering the 2013 season adding depth and youth to the safety position.

 

Even after signing Grimes, corner is still a concern. Grimes is coming off a season-ending injury. Richard Marshall, whom Miami signed last off-season, is coming off of a season-ending injury; while also playing incredibly poorly during his first season with the team. Dimitri Patterson played well in limited time with the Dolphins last season, but owns a hefty contract for a back-up or nickel corner. Nolan Carroll was picked on in just about every game last season; proving to be the Dolphins true weak-point in the secondary. R.J. Stanford and Julian Posey are two young guys, but neither has true upside as your prototypical number-one corner.

 

What is Miami’s best option to help “fill out” the corner position?

 

The first question Miami must answer is, do we feel comfortable with a combination of Grimes and either Marshall or Patterson in our starting line-up? If yes, corner is not a pressing need and can be pursued during the latter rounds. If no, then the team must first decide on Patterson’s future – if Miami cuts Patterson the team will not suffer a cap hit even though he carries a hefty contract. Then the team must decide on where to go from here. Fill the corner position via the draft or via free agency.

 

Miami’s best option, overall, is to turn their focus toward the NFL Draft after the free agent market has been completely depleted recently. The upcoming corner class is incredibly deep during rounds two and three for teams looking for starting caliber corners.

 

No, the signing of Grimes does not mean Miami will not look at Florida State’s Xavier Rhodes or Washington’s Desmond Trufant with the 12th overall selection in the first round, but the team has pushed that need down the list a bit.

 

Adding a corner or two during the second or third rounds would be in Miami’s best interest. Candidates such as David Amerson (N.C. State), Robert Alford (Southern Louisiana), Blidi Wreh-Wilson (UConn), D.J. Hayden (Houston), Jordan Poyer (Oregon State), Jamar Taylor (Boise State), Logan Ryan (Rutgers), Darius Slay (Miss. State), Jonathan Banks (Miss. State), and Sanders Commings (Georgia) are all logical fits for the Miami Dolphins’ zone scheme on defense.

 

Miami will be looking to add long, agile and strong corners who can also help in run support to their defense – a large reason why I believe the team let corner Sean Smith leave via free agency.

 

But whom exactly? We shall see some April. Until then, stay thirsty my Phins.

Tags: Brent Grimes David Amerson Dimitri Patterson Featured Miami Dolphins Popular Richard Marshall

  • Miami Jules

    No, of course they’re not… we have 11 picks for crying out loud, and other than our safety Reshad Jones…. who do we really have back there. I am holding my breath on Carroll. Why? Because the improvents he made betweem the ’11 season and last and if he (Carroll) improves this year, by only half as much, he may be at least OK. Should he not improve, then we HAVE to replace him in ’14, but for at least this year, I’ll hold my breath. Marshall unfortunately poor fellow, a different story. We’re not talking ACL or Achilles here, because as bad as these are, they can pale in comparison to back problems. Now we have Grimes and Jones, one CB and 1 safety, with the question mark going to Carroll. That’s it! Brace yourselves now for my list of CB’s and safeties I personally recomend (Hopefully Coyle, Philbin and Ireland will read this post today and take notes because I’m pretty sure they follow Tyler)

    Jonathan Cyprien
    Jamar Taylor
    Robert Alford
    Shawn Williams
    Ryan Swope
    OK, OK, don’t freak, I know Swope is a WR but he is such a play maker that if I mention him enough, the forces of nature will make it happen.

    • TylerMcMullen

      Agreed on Carroll. I had him as one of my main break-out candidates for this past season. Although that didn’t quite pan out, he was indeed the weak-point in the secondary. Teams picked on him. He has potential, though.

      Hahaha I’m positive they follow me, Jules!

      Although I’m not a huge fan of Clemons, he did show improvement towards the end of the season. If he could play a full 16 games like he did in the final 8, we’re talking one of the best safeties in the league to pair with well, one of the best safeties in the league.

      I would love Cyprien. If he falls to 43, no reason we should not pull the trigger. Another guy I’d love is Rambo. He’s a ball-hawk. Another would be TJ McDonald. He’s a bigger and faster version of Taylor Mays – someone I WAS incredibly high on, but he’s just terrible.

      Alford, Taylor, Amerson, Wreh-Wilson, Hayden, Slay, Banks – take your pick. They’ll all be there in the second round, at the very least!

      Thanks for the read and the comment, Jules!

      • Miami Jules

        Plenty of choices in the 2nd indeed. Tyler, if you have Excell, you may want to “friend” me on Facebook, because then I’ll be able to see you and add you to my F/B group Dolphins Now. where I have posted my excell NFL Drat analysis sheet… it’s pretty good, but you must have Excell and it’d help if you know how to use it, at least at a beginers’ level. It’s the draft at a glance by position, ranking and of course it also includes the 243rd version of my famed and beloved mock draft.

        • Miami Jules

          PS Let me know about above because my given name isn’t Miami Jules… could you imagine being babtized with that nane? As much as I love my city, I would have had a very strage relationship with my parents and given teenage malcontent a new meaning.

          • TylerMcMullen

            That would be awesome! I figured your name was not Jules, but I wanted to show you a bit of respect for following me on a consistent basis! Did not want to call you “man” or “dude”, although I guess “Sir” would have been appropriate.

          • Miami Jules

            LOL…Tyler, My dad was sir or Mr. I am dated but from the Rock and Punk generation so we embrace a bit of irreverence. My name is Julian and I’ll send you a request on Facebook, when you accepted, I’ll be able to see you on the list and add your name to the Dolphin Now F/B group, where I have posted my analysis sheet.

  • Chris

    They def could still use more playmakers on D. I still recall last season like it was yesterday, as the opposing QB would nonchalantly drop back, survey the field with no pressure and patiently wait for someone to get open. I think the first 2 or 3 rounds will be Defense heavy with maybe a OLineman sprinkled in but you can never have enough good corners or pass rushers now a days.

    • TylerMcMullen

      Agreed, Chris! Play-makers on defense is the key word there. Ireland and Philbin BOTH have come out and said that the team needs to find play-makers on defense that can take the ball away. I expect the team to address the skill positions early and often in the draft. It will be interesting to see what route they end up taking. I think doubling down with corners in the first three rounds is their best option. Many people will not admit it, but a great fit minus the off-the-field issues would be Tyrann Mathieu. Another would be Amerson. Two guys who know how to get the football and do something with it. Thanks for the read and the comment, Chris!!

      • Miami Jules

        Gee I hope so… coming out from a debate where the majority wants Eifert drafted at 12, if not defence, whether DE or secondary, at least a OT, but it looks, based on those comments made during the combine if I remember, that will do just that, and WR is no longer a pressing need, at least not a dire need.

    • Miami Jules

      Chris, against the Colts, we opted for coverage over rush, and just sent our DE’sa fter Luck… same thing agains New England…I always felt since our secondary couldn’t cover anyway, we might as well have sent them after the QB… but yes, we could certainly benifit from help at DE.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Matthew-J-Bailey/1055197089 Matthew J Bailey

    One way to improve ALL the defensive backs already on the roster–and add a 2nd or 3rd round pickup–is to improve the pass rush. Any CB or S is exponentially better if they have to cover for 1 or 2 seconds instead of 3 to 5 seconds. Adding Anash, Venner or Damontre Moore would immediately make the entire secondary better…and the quality of defensive backs in the 2nd are very close to everyone except Milliner.

    If Milliner slides to the 5-7 slots (unlikely), I could certainly see Miami moving up.

    • TylerMcMullen

      Ansah is the guy I personally want. Bad. But it’s unlikely he will fall to Miami. Werner’s stock has taken a hit in recent weeks for some reason. Moore. Moore’s stock has fallen terribly because of his poor work ethic in preparation for the NFL Combine. While I think he’d be an awesome fit across from Wake, Miami by no means should be even tempted to take him at 12.

      Milliner may slide to 6, but the Browns would love to pair him with Joe Haden and create one of the league’s youngest and most dynamic corner duos. Miami will not be moving up this April. Trust me.

      Best option to improve the corner position is to address either the pass rush or an offensive position in the first round and then work from there. Adding a corner in the second and third rounds will immediately help not only the depth, but the talent on the roster. Thanks for the read and the comment, Matthew!

  • CTFan

    What I think the the dolphins should draft in the first 3rds. #1 Bjoern Werner DE #2 Darius Slay CB #2 Tyrann Mathieu CB #3 Ryan Swope WR #3 Brennan Williams OT. What does everybody think of those picks?

    • TylerMcMullen

      Not too shabby. I was a huge fan of Werner, but have stayed away from him. Solid addition to the defensive line, though. Slay is someone I have my eye on, but I think the team could snag him with their second pick of the second round. Mathieu could be a wild-card, but I don’t think his value is in the second round. I think his spot is somewhere in the third round. Swope and Williams would be solid additions in the third round. I want Williams. But I think his spot is in the fourth round. And I wouldn’t mind Swope, but I would rather take someone like Terrance Williams in the third than Swope. Thanks for the read and the comment!!

    • Miami Jules

      CTFan, I’m not sure what it is… maybe it’s the doubt cast on players who didn’t grow up in the US, which is totally understandable… may be not as passionate about the game. I know I have some reservations about Margus Hunt for that reason, but in the end, I still like Hunt, though I wouldn’t move him up, same goes for Menelik Watson. Back to Werner. He is at the top of the rankings for DE’s yet draft experts continue to place him as many as 10 spots under Ansah in their mock drafts…puzzling.

    • Miami Jules

      CTFan….I am the hugestmostest fan of Swope… he is a play maker, the drive and determination of Welker, the speed of Goodson (not quite but he’s in the neighborhood, a very fast neighborhood… imagine a neighborhood of RV’s and they all have 767 size turbo engines), not the ideal sized hand and has been criticized for using his body, but I DO NOT CARE “… In a world full of pretenders and fakers it’s good to see contenders and playmakers” Swope is soooo good that he brings out the poet in me! nuf said.