The Miami Dolphins underwent a huge overhaul on defense this offseason in an effort to better stop opposing pass offenses in an increasingly air-happy league. Miami entered the 2012 regular season with a roster most experts were down on, but managed to scrap together a pleasantly surprising 7-9 campaign even with the league’s 27th-ranked pass defense.
Heading into the latest incarnation of training camp Miami boasts a more pass-rush friendly personnel. Kevin Burnett and Karlos Dansby were perfectly two good linebackers — especially in the run game — until they got the axe in favor of free-agent signings Dannell Ellerbe and Phillip Wheeler, who bring the blitz harder than their predecessors.
Perhaps the most key element of thi sdefensive transition in the coming years will be 2013 second-round draft pick Jamar Taylor. The Boise State product has been lauded by NFL Films’ Greg Cosell as having the most fluid movement of any cornerback in this class aside from DJ Hayden, the Oakland Raiders‘ round-one pick.
“I play with a swagger,” Taylor said, via The Sports Xchange. “Yeah, I’m kind of chippy. I like to talk stuff, I like to keep a smile on my face. But you know I’m someone who is going to go out and play real aggressive and let you know what I’m doing.”
Other Fins corners competing for time in 2013 include Dimitri Patterson, Nolan Carroll, R.J. Stanford, Will Davis and Don Jones, but it would be ideal for Miami if Taylor seizes the No. 2 CB role in training camp behind Brent Grimes, pushing Richard Marshall to the nickel corner spot.