Miami Dolphins have an unexpected camp battle for the starting center job

Michael Dieter (Photo by Mark Brown/Getty Images)
Michael Dieter (Photo by Mark Brown/Getty Images) /

Heading into training camp this year the Miami Dolphins were believed to have the center job pretty much settled but that isn’t the case.

Four days into training camp and the Dolphins are rotating their offensive linemen around as expected. Robert Hunt is at guard, Liam Eichenberg is taking tackle reps, Solomon Kindley has been moved to the third unit which is a bit of a surprise but the real surprise is at center where two players are battling for the starting job.

The Dolphins signed free agent Matt Skura during the off-season and all indications seemed to point to him starting but third-year Michael Dieter has been taking most of the reps with the starting unit and he is playing quite well. The question is not whether he will make the team but whether he will win the starting job.

This competition is a good one and Skura even spoke to the media about it.

"“It’s always about competition. That’s one of the reasons why I signed here. Nothing is just going to be given to you.” Matt Skura via the Miami Dolphins released press transcripts."

Skura was asked whether he was surprised by not starting. Skura said that each year he has had to compete and that this year really isn’t any different. He was also asked if he and his offensive line coach have had any conversations about him getting first-team reps. Skura said he would keep those discussions between himself and his coach.

Dieter had a pretty decent rookie season where he started at guard much of the year but last season, he was relegated to spot duty and pretty much rode the bench. He came into camp as a question mark to make the roster but most felt he would get another season to prove he can play at this level. So far, it seems that the change in position has worked out well for him.

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The Dolphins are gambling with youth along the line. The starters could very well be Eichenberg, Hunt, Dieter, Kindley, and Austin Jackson. The most experienced in terms of seasons would be Dieter. Last year the Dolphins started four rookies along the line of scrimmage throughout the year.