The Miami Dolphins will cut to 75 by this coming Tuesday. The trim to 53 comes just under a week later. Running back is a position on the team that will feel the knife on that final day of cuts.
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It’s known that Jay Ajayi will make the roster and after Thursday nights game in Orlando, Arian Foster will make the team as well. There was some speculation that Foster may not be guaranteed a roster spot at the end of camp. He’s done enough.
With Foster and Ajayi taking two of the at most 4 spots of the 53 the battle for the two remaining are between Kenyan Drake, Isaiah Pead, Daniel Thomas, and Damien Williams.
The Dolphins like what they have seen in Pead thus far and a very knowledgeable member on Twitter believes that Pead has shown enough.
Kouffman is typically spot on with his reports so learning that Pead has “made the roster” is better than a 50/50 chance of becoming fact. So much so that I will pencil Pead in as the 3rd runner to make the roster.
Prior to the start of camp I predicted Pead would not make the team so like many other positions and players, I’m wrong, apparently. Daniel Thomas also sat at the edge of that cutting knife and that hasn’t changed.
Thomas simply isn’t making the kind of progress he needs to make the roster and not being a viable option in the return game makes his chances even worse. A highly regarded product out of Kansas State, Thomas’ NFL career has been nothing short of a legit bust.
This leaves Damien Williams and Kenyan Drake.
Drake who has been injured has returned to practice. The Dolphins invested in Drake this past April when they spent a 3rd round pick on him. Drake is going to make the roster as he has the size, speed, and quickness that Adam Gase wants. He lacks the experience however.
Unfortunately, experience isn’t something that Williams has a lot of. That is where the knife blade will end. Williams has very little chance of making the roster unless the Dolphins opt to keep five runners on the team. While that is not likely it’s not entirely out of the question.
Given the injury history of Arian Foster and previous injuries to Ajayi, the Dolphins need to be careful about how they approach their depth. Williams won’t be unemployed for long if and when he is released so going back to that well should an injury occur won’t be an available option for the Dolphins.
Still, there are a lot of other needs specifically with depth players at almost every other position so keeping five running backs is a luxury the Dolphins really can’t afford. Which leaves, given what is known today, Williams out of a roster spot.