There has been a lot of talk in South Florida regarding which veteran running backs could be on the Dolphins’ radar once free agency begins, but the speedy, homerun threat runner this offense is missing could already be in house. I’m referring, of course, to third year running back Kory Sheets.
Technically, there is no guarantee Sheets will be a Dolphin in 2011, as he was scheduled to be an exclusive rights free agent under the old CBA. But even in the event that the new CBA doesn’t permit exclusive rights or restricted free agents, it’s widely speculated that Sheets will remain in Miami in 2011. The Dolphins need depth at running back and Sheets will be cheap to resign.
Some may consider Sheets only a camp body with an outside shot at cracking the final-53. But looking at what Sheets could bring to the table for what was a boring and slow offense in 2010, you probably shouldn’t sleep on him as the dark horse candidate to split the majority of the carries with second-round selection Daniel Thomas.
Unfortunately for Kory, though, the Dolphins don’t exactly have a grasp on what they are getting with him. He went down early with an Achilles injury in last year’s training camp, a year after signing with the Dolphins mid-season off the 49ers’ practice squad. Camp and the preseason is when roster fringe players like Sheets get the most reps and the biggest opportunity to make an impression. Kory has yet to have either with the Dolphins.
That’s the biggest reason why I doubt Jeff Ireland will forgo acquiring a veteran back once the lockout is over. But hey, you never know. An outstanding camp and preseason or an injury to one of the projected starters, and Sheets could be right there getting an opportunity to be a playmaker for Brian Daboll’s offense.
So let’s check in with Kory to see how the Achilles is progressing, what his goals for 2011 are, and more. He was a bit brief with his responses, but minimal reading material is better than nothing at all, especially in the midst of a lockout. The interview can be seen after the jump.