Trill Williams was a player that was on the verge of something special. There was a lot of hype surrounding this player not only from media outlets, but his teammates, which was exciting. Unfortunately, Trill Williams tore his ACL during Saturday’s game and will officially be out for the season.
Next man up is the motto that the Miami Dolphins will have to implore. The worrisome aspect of that motto is that the depth at the cornerback positions is not a strength for this team. Yes, the Miami Dolphins have two legit starting cornerbacks in Xavien Howard and Bryon Jones. X will man the corner spot, and Jones will hopefully be ready prior to the start of week 1, but that is a concern. The Dolphins do have an amazing asset in Nik Needham as their nickel corner, but after that, this is where it gets scary.
Noah Igbinoghene, a former 1st round pick (yes the pick that could have potentially be used to draft Jonathan Taylor) has not lived up to his hype or draft status. To be honest, watching the game tape, I have a strong belief that Noah is in jeopardy of even making the 53 man roster. I tried my best to look at the positives for this young prospect, but at some point, you have to call a dud a dud.
Keion Crossen, a free agent signing this past offseason could be a potential solution for the 4th cornerback spot, but this is a player that has little to none experience. Crossen’s main attraction is his play on special teams. This a Walt Aikens or Michael Thomas type signing, and if the Miami Dolphins were focused on this player starting, that might be a problem.
Where I’m going with this, Chris Grier and Mike McDaniel have to understand that the 4th cornerback position isn’t a player on their current roster. So who is available, there are two players that make the most sense to me:
First, let’s make sure everyone understands my thought process, I’m not for signing an aging veteran. Which means, I don’t believe Miami should focus on Josh Norman, or Chris Harris or Janoris Jenkins – these were all great players, but all of them are turning over 34 years old and had a troublesome season.
With the Dolphins having two amazing mentors, in Coach Surtain and Madison, the ideal candidate is a young professional that has made an impact on this league:
28 years old, fresh off a Super Bowl run with the Rams and guess what, he played against Mike McDaniel’s former team twice last year. Deayon isn’t a household name, but he has a similar story to Nik and Trill, as he was an undrafted free agent that made his way onto a Super Bowl champion team.
Deayon has great awareness, but lacks ideal closing speed. His shadowning is “ok.” He struggles with his zone recognition, but you can tell he likes to play man coverage – which is what the Dolphins love to run.
Baker unfortunately is a name that will raise some eyebrows, as his off field play has been louder than his on field. But the past is in the past. The reason why Baker is not on an NFL roster right now, he tore his ACL last season and teams are looking to see if he might have lost a step.
Baker was a force when he was on the field for the Giants and the Chiefs. He’s a former 1st rounder and unlike Noah, has lived up to that draft pedigree. The Dolphins are not asking Baker to start, rather just fill the void on the depth chart and play in potential dime formation.
Losing Trill was the worst part of this past weekend preseason victory. Now it’s time to look at the option Mr. Grier and bring in some talent to help offset that loss. Baker and Deayon make sense and wouldn’t cost the team anything more than the league average.