How the Miami Dolphins can use Dion Jordan


Nov 24, 2013; Miami Gardens, FL, USA; Miami Dolphins defensive end Dion Jordan (95) reacts after sacking Carolina Panthers quarterback Cam Newton (1) during the second quarter at Sun Life Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports

Perhaps the most intriguing player on the entire Miami Dolphins roster right now is Dion Jordan. The team reportedly denied offers for a trade with the Eagles that would ship Jordan off for a second round pick and Brandon Graham (a very good backup at end) after a disappointing rookie season. The defense of him is that he missed a lot of camp with an injury and was supposed to be a project, but still, as a number 3 overall pick, more was expected of him. As the highest pick on the current Dolphins roster, it’s obvious that the team has big plans for him. The real question is what those plans are.

Obviously first and foremost, Jordan can be a designated pass rush specialist. Rushing the passer is the primary thing he was brought to the team to do. He can play end in a four-man front and rush LB in a three-man front. He also played some SLB and WLB in four man fronts as well, as a way to get him, Wake, and Vernon all on the field at the same time.

All of this, while slightly nonstandard, is stuff that we as Dolfans all know is coming. This wouldn’t be that new. While, if done more frequently, it could throw offenses for a loop in itself, I still believe there’s more.

Jordan played some nickel corner at times in college. Yes, it was at a much lower weight, but that’s why what I have planned isn’t the same thing. I want him to play more in coverage. This year the Dolphins will be facing the likes of Jared Cook, Jason Witten, Rob Gronkowski (twice), Jace Amaro (twice), Eric Ebron, Antonio Gates, Kyle Rudolph, Julius Thomas, and Dennis Pitta, among others. That’s a lot of firepower at TE. I want Jordan on the field, shadowing them. I want to prevent a repeat of Jimmy Graham’s performance this past season. If they are run blocking, I want Jordan setting the edge against them.

If they are pass blocking, I want him blitzing. And if they are running a pass route, I want him covering them. Those guys aren’t accustomed to going up against guys as tall as him, and taking away their advantage in jump balls is everything. Jordan can take them out of the game. He played a LITTLE bit of man coverage last year and allowed zero receptions during that time. This year, it needs to be on a bigger scale. He can take away the matchup advantages.

Jordan won’t just be an end or a linebacker or a pass rush specialist. He can be a designated tight end stopper.