The Miami Dolphins have made quite a bit of change to their roster over the last three seasons and there are not many pre-Flores holdovers left.
It is not uncommon for a new coaching staff to clean out the closet, rid themselves of old contracts, players, and switch to new systems. Whether a testament to the new staff or a black mark on an old regime, players come and go. It’s no different for the Dolphins.
The Miami Dolphins roster is currently at 90 players, the Dolphins added a player over the weekend and it was the first time this year that they maxed out at the 90 limit. Of those 90 players, only 9 played for the previous coaching staff.
Adam Gase is long forgotten for both the Dolphins and the Jets but he isn’t as forgotten as Joe Philbin’s coaching seasons. Philbin coached from 2012 to 2015 and only one player remains from any of his seasons on the Dolphins roster.
DeVante Parker became the last holdover from the Joe Philbin era after Bobby McCain was released earlier in the month. Both were drafted in the 2015 draft. No players added through free agency remain on the Dolphins roster.
The holdover from the Adam Gase era is a lot better but by better we mean eight players are still on the roster.
Xavien Howard was drafted in the 2016 draft and remains one of the best corners in the league. That same year, Jakeem Grant was drafted. While trade talks swirled earlier in the off-season about Howard being traded, it is Grant whose future seems to be uncertain.
With a deep WR group, Grant’s main value is on the special team’s units as a returner but the Dolphins have added others that are capable, and cheaper of doing that job.
From 2016 we skip forward quite a few years in NFL terms. While Grant and Howard are holdovers from Gase’s first year, not one player remains from Gase’s second season. In 2018, the Dolphins drafted Mike Gesicki, Jerome Baker, Durham Smythe, and Jason Sanders. The entire 2017 draft class is gone.
The only holdover from Adam Gase’s second season of roster additions is guard/tackle Jesse Davis and in 2018, the only non-drafted player on the roster is Albert Wilson.
What is interesting is that Wilson, Grant, Smythe, and maybe even Jesse Davis may not make it to September for the Dolphins. I think Davis has the best shot.
The fact that Miami doesn’t have many players left over from the last two coaching staff is indicative of how bad their approach was to the team during those years, the failures of the men in charge of draft picks and free agents did their job.
The bigger question to all of this is not who will be gone next but whether or not we will be talking about the Brian Flores holdovers in four or five years or if we will still be talking about Brian Flores in the present tense. If his first two years are any indication, I think we will be talking about him in the present tense.