The Miami Dolphins look to help Solomon Kindley improve and adjust to the NFL.
The Miami Dolphins final offensive line selection in the 2020 NFL draft was Solomon Kindley, a massive guard out of the University of Georgia. Listed at 6’4” 336, Kindley is an absolute mauler at guard. His movement and mobility may be less than stellar, but he’s a power player at heart. We all know how much Miami Dolphins’ head coach Brian Flores loves him some power players.
Going into training camp, Kindley’s hopes for a starting job rests on things that are out of his control. He needs to hope for an injury or a potential opt-out from another player due to COVID-19. His best chance to start comes at the right guard spot. Miami is not fully committed to Jesse Davis, especially if Robert Hunt wins the right tackle job.
Starting would require playing better than Jesse Davis in the *checks notes* eight padded practices agreed upon for training camp. Davis would have to be absolutely awful in camp. With that being said, eight days of hitting is nowhere near enough time for him to overtake a two and a half year starter.
Turn on the tape: 2019 vs Notre Dame
Kindley played less than a half in this game, but showed some really nice flashes early on. The first thing that is absolutely noticeable on tape is his hands. He’s got heavy hands that deliver quite the pop (You can see him working on some technique in the attached video). In pass protection, he holds up well in most of the reps and shows some really nice anchoring ability. He’ll get beat by quickness every once and a while, but that would certainly improve if he gets in better shape.
Mobility is a huge concern with Kindley. He really struggles on the move and just is not a very athletic lineman. There’s not much fluidity to his game. However, he did have one play where he got on his horse and got to damn near the third level on a screen. Unfortunately, the linebacker snuffed out the screen in the backfield and ended the play before Kindley could even make the block. There are certainly flashes.
While it was only for a half, he was absolutely relentless in this game. He’s the type of guy that plays through the echo of the whistle and refuses to quit. The term “lethargic” has been thrown around, but that gets taken out of context. He’s relatively nonathletic, but he is in no way lazy or disinterested. His motor is full steam ahead all game long.
There is no chance that Kindley naturally starts this year unless he’s spent the off-season getting in shape. The coaching staff may ask him to cut some weight. The best thing for him would be to spend his rookie season as a backup. He’s talented and powerful, but extremely raw, even more so than Robert Hunt and Austin Jackson. If the coaching staff likes what they see from Kindley over the next year, he should find himself starting in 2021. After this season, the Dolphins have an out in Davis’ contract. With revenue loss affecting the cap, they won’t be keeping him on as a backup.