Predicting Lynn Bowden Jr. 2022 season is quite paradoxical

Lynn Bowden Mandatory Credit: Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports
Lynn Bowden Mandatory Credit: Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports /

As I delve deeper and deeper into creating player profiles for the 2022 Miami Dolphins, this one on Lynn Bowden Jr. has befuddled me the most. Lynn Bowden Jr., or LBJ as I hope he wants to be called, is a paradox. He might end up being one of the more valuable players on offense or he doesn’t make the team.

Lynn Bowden Jr. is another one of those players on the team that it’s cool to like. Like Zach Sieler, liking Lynn Bowden Jr. means you’re one of the cool kids and you get to sit at the cool kids’ table at lunch.

Last year, LBJ got hurt in training camp. The powers that be figured it be prudent to shelve Bowden Jr. for the entire season and put him on the IR. He probably could have come back later in the year but the brilliant minds at the controls thought they were beyond stacked at the receiver position and didn’t envision a world where Lynn Bowden Jr. would help them. Cut to the end of the year when Mack Hollins and Isaiah Ford were getting starter-like snaps and you can see how that thinking was flawed.

Fast forward(I hope everyone did that fast forward sound in their head as they read the words fast forward) and Lynn Bowden is healthy(yes I know he has a slight hamstring thing going on and yes I know how much we’ve dealt with receivers with hamstring concerns), in phenomenal shape, and has been putting in the work with Tua Tagovailoa for months.

Reports coming out of OTAs were that Lynn Bowden Jr. had some strong performances and looks like a guy who is not just trying to make the team but be a difference-maker. LBJ has that ability to be a difference-maker if stays healthy.

No, LBJ will never be a Deebo Samuel-type player. I don’t think he’ll ever be getting straight-up handoffs up between the tackles over and over again. So let’s get that idea out of here. But LBJ can be lined up anywhere on the field, can receive the ball in the backfield, and could sling it if asked to.

LBJ may not have that stout, low center of gravity of power that Deebo has, but he has a repertoire of sleek and stealthy moves that will shatter ankles and bend brains. Bowden Jr. has a shiftiness and a quick-twitch first step that is very reminiscent of a former Miami Dolphins who is now on the coaching staff and just so happens to be the wide receivers coach. The idea of Wes Welker funneling all that he knows about navigating the slot makes me feel tingly. I don’t care if that’s weird.

I also won’t rule out the possibility of Lynn Bowden Jr. being the Dolphin’s return guy either. I think he has that skill-set and I fully trust him in that role unless he can’t do it then I don’t want him to be the return guy.

Let’s not act like Mike McDaniel doesn’t already have a notebook full of plays ala Coach Klein that involve Lynn Bowden Jr. getting about 14 reverses and then throwing to a wide-open Robert Hunt(who’s eligible of course) out of multiple sets. That might be play-one this year.

But first, Lynn Bowden Jr. needs to make the team. It’s possible he doesn’t. He isn’t a lock or anything like that. Currently, the wide-receiver room looks like this; Tyreek Hill, Jaylen Waddle, Cedrick Wilson, Erik Ezukanma, Preston Williams, DeVonte Dedmon, Cody Core, Trent Sherfield, River Cracraft, and Braylon Sanders. Lynn Bowden Jr. makes 11 receivers that will be at camp.

You can already Sharpie in Hill, Waddle, and Wilson. And I think 4th round pick, Erik Ezukanma isn’t going anywhere which leaves one or maybe two spots left. It will most certainly be a battle for LBJ to get one of the remaining spots.

I predict that he will. I think he will show Mike McD just how valuable and versatile he is when practice gets more intense. I think LBJ will show him and the rest of the coaches that he carried a Kentucky team on his back when he was in college due to not just his supreme athletic ability but his will to not be denied. I think he’s that kind of player.

Mike McD also thinks highly of LBJ’s ability and potential;

"“He does have an interesting skill set,” new coach Mike McDaniel said Tuesday, via Adam Luckett of “I’ve always been drawn to players that have multiple positions — specifically quarterback experience — because of the way they see the game. He’s been diligent in the meeting room.”"

Lynn Bowden Jr. being the Miami Dolphin’s 4th-6th receiver on the depth chart is a wonderful thing for us fans and a potential nightmare for defensive coordinators pending everyone stays healthy and does what they’re supposed to do. It will undoubtedly be one of the more intriguing storylines as camp unfolds and I can’t wait to see it.

AQUA-TINTED GLASSES PREDICTION: 77 catches, 888 yards, 7 TDs, 37 carries for 412 yards 3 TDs with 3 TD passes

NON-AQUA-TINTED GLASSES PREDICTION: 48 catches, 501 yards, 4 TDs, 14 carries for 175 yards 1 TD with 1 TD pass

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