On Monday, the Miami Dolphins released their first depth chart of the new season ahead of their game against the Bears on Saturday. There are a couple of surprises.
It’s always fun to see the first depth chart of the year but I wouldn’t read too much into it because there is an ebb and flow as the pre-season games work themselves out and players are shuffled around.
Offensively there are only a couple of real surprises and those, if you have been following camp notes, are really not all that surprising.
- Liam Eichenberg is the starting LG
- Solomon Kindley is the 2nd team LG
- Adam Shaheen is the number 2 TE behind Gesicki
- Jaylen Waddle is 2nd behind Albert Wilson
- Gaskin, Brown, Ahmed, and Laird
Kindley was demoted to the third team a week ago and was promoted to the 2nd team so this isn’t a big surprise. At TE, the group is Gesicki, Shaheen, Durham Smythe, and Cethan Carter with Hunter Long fifth but we are still waiting on word about his injury and as I said above, the depth chart doesn’t guarantee a roster spot.
In the TE case, if Hunter Long is able to return, he isn’t going to be released and the Dolphins are not carrying five tight ends.
It is surprising to see Shaheen ahead of Smythe and with Smythe being in the final year of his contract, we have to wonder if there is a possibility that he doesn’t make the roster.
Running back is interesting as well. Myles Gaskin was always the number one but is Malcolm Brown really number 2? Salvon Ahmed has been a little banged up and missed some camp time and that could be the reason he is three but Brown is probably going to get more work than Ahmed so this is probably pretty accurate.
Laird at four is not surprising but it will be interesting to see if the Dolphins carry more than four running backs and if they don’t will Jordan Scarlett or Gerrid Doaks move ahead of Laird?
Wide receiver isn’t really a surprise. Waddle is a rookie and Wilson is having a great camp so far. WR 1 goes Parker, Grant, Foster, Merritt, and Locksley while WR 2 goes Fuller, Hollins, Hurns, and Ford. WR 3/slot is Wilson, Waddle, Bowden, and Perry.
The Dolphins are deep but it is looking like Locksley, Merritt, and Allen Hurns are going to face not making the roster. Preston Williams is not on the depth chart and probably will head to the PuP list at some point.
There is going to be a big competition between Bowden and Perry and frankly, I don’t see how both of them can make the team.
Shifting over to the defense, there really isn’t much intrigue as it has pretty much played out as expected.
- Jevon Holland is 2nd team
- Jason McCourty at safety 1
- Rowe ahead of Brandon Jones
- Igbinoghene behind Byron Jones
- Jaelen Phillips third team
Holland has been impressive in camp but it is hard to see him unseat McCourty at this point. There will be some shifting and Holland will see plenty of playing time this year. McCourty has been practicing at both safety and corner.
No surprise about Rowe, he played very well last year but it is interesting to note that both Brandon Jones and Holland are the future tandem at safety, maybe as early as 2022.
Igbinoghene has not been impressing at camp but is still on the 2nd team unit. He really needs to let this game slow down and play fundamental football.
It may seem surprising to see Phillips on the 3rd team but he hasn’t been a 100% participant in camp and the Dolphins are working him slowly to avoid any concussion issues and he has been a little banged up. This isn’t likely staying that way and it should also be noted that he is listed as a linebacker but will more likely be used as a hybrid LB/DE.