Miami Dolphins need Noah Igbinoghene to not be the weak link

Noah Igbinoghene Miami Dolphins Mandatory Credit: Rich Storry-USA TODAY Sports
Noah Igbinoghene Miami Dolphins Mandatory Credit: Rich Storry-USA TODAY Sports /

The Miami Dolphins’ defensive secondary is a problem. There is a lack of quality and experienced depth and then there is Noah Igbinoghene.

We hear this quite often, Noah Igbinoghene works his butt off to get better but that hard work isn’t translating to the field of play. On Sunday, Igbinoghene may be called upon to play as a cornerback and he has to figure it out enough to not be the defense’s weak link.

If we are to believe the Dolphins’ current depth chart, Nik Needham will get the call to start on the boundary opposite Xavien Howard but if Needham shifts around and the Dolphins go to their bench, Igbinoghene is listed as the number two.

Needham isn’t a big concern. He plays strong and fast and continues to get better but that isn’t the case for Igbinoghene who more consistently finds himself out of position.

Throughout camp and in the preseason, Igbinoghene was picked on quite a bit by opposing offenses and if we see him enter the game on Sunday, Bill Belichick will do everything he can to exploit the young former first-round corner.

Between now and then, Igbinoghene needs it all to click. He doesn’t have to be perfect but he needs to be better. The Dolphins’ defense is designed to succeed with quality protection on the boundary and I would suspect that the Patriots’ offense will try and minimize pressure on Mac Jones by attacking Needham and Igbinoghene quickly to avoid the Miami pressure.

For Igbinoghene, it’s time. He has a great supporting cast at safety and the front seven is tough. If he can hold his position on the outside, he can show he belongs in this league and will help Miami to a victory on Sunday. Of course, the other side of this coin is that he has to be active as well.

Igbinoghene has spent many games listed as inactive. Will the depth issues at cornerback not allow Miami to do the same again? We will find out on Sunday.

One thing is for certain, Miami Dolphins fans continue to root hard for him to turn his early career around. There is a lot of unrealized talent in Igbinoghene but so far, it just hasn’t fully clicked.