Just when you thought the roster was almost close to being set, another injury occurred on the Dolphins' offensive line. RT/RG Artis Hicks has neck/nerve injury that will keep him out indefinitely.
As reported by Armando Salguero of the Miami Herald on his blog an hour ago, Hicks stands to be out with an injury and placed on injured reserve.
While the Dolphins have depth at other positions such as running back and the defensive line, they cannot afford to lose Hicks, a veteran offensive lineman, for the entire season.
With the current health status of Jake Long up in the air until at least Friday, the Dolphins will need to make a roster decision and find a guard to replace Hicks and provide some much needed depth to the line.
Looking at the current depth chart, Dolphins coach Joe Philbin had pencilled in Hicks to start as of a few days ago, but now there is even more uncertainty at the right guard position. Why? As indicated by Salguero in his report, John Jerry has been hurt a couple of days, so if he cannot go, the Dolphins may call on Josh Samuda, Nate Garner, or Ray Feinga.
Some possible calls the Dolphins could make are:
Eric Steinbach a call and coax him out of retirement or look at Jake Scott.
After all, a line without experienced starters on the right side and a rookie quarterback leading the offense is not an immediate recipe for success versus a Texans D chomping at the bit more than ever.
A defense that claims to already know the Dolphins snap counts and cadence from watching Hard Knocks on HBO.
So far this makes 2 free agent moves made by Jeff Ireland go bust in a week. First with Garrard and now with Art Hicks. What's next Dolfans?
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Something that sets winning organizations from others who struggle is consistency. There is an expression, “the family who plays together, stays together”, the same can apply to a football team. Teams that have had the ability to gel together and build relationships over the years generally perform better on the football field.
This can be seen on a football team, with QB’s building a relationship with its WR’s or an offensive line working together.
From @DolphinsNews “As of today, 34% of the Dolphins roster has been turned over from last season "
With a young rookie QB and a team which seems it’s about to get their second rebuild, this team will need to work together and build off each other if it’s going to succeed.
While change can usually be a good thing in football, too much of it can really damage a roster. Dan Marino who recently made some comments on the Dolphins and Ryan Tannehill at Dolphins’ Touchdown Club luncheon said ““Ryan Tannehill is going to have to grow with the people around him and learn as much as he can on the run. “
Marino notes the importance of Tannehill growing with people around him.
This rebuild will be a process, it will take time until the Dolphins turn this thing around, however if the Dolphins want to make this work they will need to improve on creating consistency and building relationships on this team, churning the roster is no way to succeed in this league.no comments
With only five days remaining until the Dolphins kickoff the 2012 campaign at Reliant Stadium against the Houston Texans, Miami made its decision on which quarterbacks it will take into the regular season.
Jay Glazer of Fox Sports reported that the Dolphins have released veteran quarterback David Garrard.
Garrard's release certainly wasn't because of his on field performance during training camp seeing as he was once listed atop the Dolphins depth chart and was the early favourite to win the starting quarterback job. Many believe that with Garrard in the mix for the entire preseason, Ryan Tannehill wouldn't be the week 1 starter. Miami cut the 34 year old Garrard due to a lack of durabilty and the fact that he wouldn't be game ready for another several weeks.
Nearing the end of his career, David Garrard has been hampered by injuries. He missed the entire 2011 season with a back injury and suffered a surgery required knee injury in early August while playing with his children at home.
The Dolphins ultimately elected to go with Matt Moore as the backup to the rookie Tannehill. Although Garrard had past experience working in the west coast offence, Moore is much younger and more prepared at this point to be Miami's backup. With Tannehill, Moore and Pat Devlin as the third string, the Dolphins have a solid trio at the NFL's most important position.
The release of Garrard also creates cap space and a free roster spot for the Dolphins. Miami brought in several wide recievers over the weekend that could be signed in the near future with the latest being former Patriot Jabar Gaffney. If it's not a reciever, the other position the Dolphins may address is cornerback where Rod Hood remains an available option.
Although Garrard's time with the Dolphins was brief he will leave a lasting impact on a key part of the team. Garrard's veteran presence assisted Tannehill thoughout camp and was in large part the reason Tannehill was able to catch Moore for the starting job.
Following the release David Garrard took to twitter saying "To all the dolphins fans thx for ur support! Best of luck to all my teammates. Thx for making me feel at home!! Phins up!!"
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Let's not get too carried away about Ryan Tannehill's first game officially as starting quarterback versus the Texans in Houston. Now starting Sunday, the stats count and wins and losses could mount. Everything that Tannehill does will be recorded on the stat sheet and Dolfans will be at the edge of their collective seats.
Ryan Tannehill has shown a calm presence in the huddle, pocket, and in the meeting room not seen since the likes of that other QB from 1983-1999 in Miami. Tannehill is certainly capable of taking over a game with the flick of a wrist.
However has anyone ever considered the one thing that makes him more a complete QB for this new wave of passers? His legs.
Yes, that's right, Tannehill has quick feet and has shown his ability to elude tacklers in his collegiate career. Whether it was a short 15 yard scamper for a first down versus Atlanta in the preseason or his history as a college receiver don't underestimate his legs.
In fact, Tannehill scored four touchdowns and had 58 rushes for 306 yards as a quarterback in college running Mike Sherman's west coast offense. A dynamic model for what the Dolphins will run this season the system adopted by coach Joe Philbin is a system that depends on all players on offense in lock step and ready to get set and snap the ball as soon as each play is over.
Certainly as a fan we all wish that the Miami Offensive line has what it takes to keep Tannehill upright, but what if they can't handle the Texans 3-4 Super Bowl caliber defense run by Wade Phillips.
Sure Tannehill has an uncanny ability to read the defense and fit the ball on the run, and make big plays.
However, some pundits might say that with the current depth at running back in Miami, Tannehill should have less pressure to throw, provided that the run game will get chunk yardage and first downs in the new zone-blocking scheme. However, having another dimension as a quarterback such as rolling out when he senses the rush from the defense, Tannehill has the athletic ability and mental toughness to make big plays when he needs that first down or more with his feet.
Wouldn't it be great if the Dolphins are inside the five yard line down four points and need a play, who is your go to guy? The play call will and should be Ryan Tannehill up the middle for the touchdown and a celebration near the tunnel after doing the unthinkable and beating the Texans in Reliant.
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As many expected, the Miami Dolphins were one of the busiest teams in the NFL today as they searched the waiver wire for upgrades to the current roster. The Dolphins were awarded a total of four players off waivers while making seven claims, although it is unknown which players Miami's unsuccessful claims were for. Each addition filled a need, most notably at the wide reciever and cornerback positions.
The first player the Dolphins were able to add off the waiver wire was former Carolina Panthers cornerback RJ Stanford. A seventh round pick in the 2010 draft, Stanford is a project however he will be a part of the 53 man roster. Stanford who is entering his second season in the league has 13 tackles and one career interception in limited playing time. In Miami, Stanford will be the team's fifth cornerback, adding depth to a thin secondary.
Miami then claimed safety Troy Nolan off waivers from the Houston Texans. The 25 year old safety is entering his third season in the NFL with career totals of 84 tackles, 3 interceptions and 1.5 sacks in 30 games. With Nolan in the picture, the Dolphins now have the option to move Jimmy Wilson from safety to cornerback which is his stronger position. The addition of Nolan instantly improves the Dolphins secondary and fills a void in arguably Miami's weakest position in the past few years.
The most significant move the Dolphins made thus far was the addition of former Washington Redskins wide reciever Anthony Armstrong. Miami and Washington had discussed a trade that would send Armstrong to the Dolphins for running back Steve Slaton untill the deal ultimately broke down. Armstrong returns to Miami after he was released in August of 2009. In 2010 Armstrong had a breakout year catching 44 passes for 871 yards and 3 touchdowns however he was held to only 7 recpetions last year due to injuries. If healthy, the 29 year old will provide the deep vertical threat that the Dolphins desperately need out of their recieving core since trading Brandon Marshall.
The Dolphins also added former St. Louis Rams linebacker Sammy Brown. Brown was released by the Rams on Friday however they had intended to put him on the practice squad. Brown was an impact player in college as he registered 21 sacks and 50 tackles in his first two seasons but slipped down draft boards due to a lack of effort. With Brown being at the bottom of the Dolphins depth chart of the team's current linebackers, he will be counted on to contribute on special teams.
As the Dolphins claimed four players they were also required to cut another four to get back down to a 53 man roster. Rumored to be headed to Washington yesterday, RB Steve Slaton was Miami's first cut of the day. Slaton was expendable seeing as the Dolphins have a surplus of running backs including Reggie Bush, Daniel Thomas, Lamar Miller and Marcus Thigpen. Linebackers Jonathan Freeny and Josh Kaddu were also cut along with veteran safety Tyrone Culver. The addition of Nolan made Culver expendable and the move clearly shows that the Dolphins are committed to building a young team.
Although Ryan Tannehill was named the Dolphins starting quarterback weeks ago, there is still plenty of uncertainty surrounding the others on the squad. Miami currently has four quarterbacks on the roster with Tannehill and Pat Devlin already safe. It is unlikely Miami will take four signal callers into the regular season meaning there is only one roster spot for Matt Moore and David Garrard. With Garrard nearing a return from a knee injury and Moore having higher value at this point, the former Panther is likely to be traded in the coming days. A possible landing spot for Moore is Arizona where the Cardinals have an ongoing QB controversy and a surplus of recievers including Early Doucet.
While today's moves are a good start for the Dolphins towards improving the roster there is still plenty of work to be done.
Follow us on twitter @Phins_Phocus to get the latest on all the Dolphins transactions.