Speed kills in today’s NFL, and the man atop the Miami Dolphins depth chart at running back has plenty of speed to burn. Reggie Bush left via free agency this offseason paving the way for second-year man Lamar Miller to get the bulk of the workload in the Miami backfield. The praise hasn’t stopped coming in for the former Miami Hurricane, and the regular season will be where he can prove that it’s not all just hot air.
This offseason has been a big growing process for Miller who has been training with a fellow former Cane and current fellow NFL star in Frank Gore of the San Francisco 49ers. Miller has been called the fastest running back ever seen by the duo’s trainer, Pete Bommarito, and that has to be encouraging for Dolphins fans. Miller offered this critique of his offseason training saying:
“I’ve gotten quicker doing lateral work, and I’ve become more explosive by training every day doing squats on my legs. [And] I’m stronger. Last year, I was kind of lost getting adjusted to the speed of the game and knowing where I’m supposed to be at all times. Now I’m very comfortable with the system.”
Obviously any time a second-year player starts to use terms like ‘adjusted’ or ‘comfortable’ things are looking up. Given the expectations for the coming season, that’s a definite positive for Miller’s prospects with Miami. Bush leaving takes the majority of the rushing totals with him which means that someone will have to make up for that loss of production.
Although Mike Gillislee will offer value as a short-yardage back in his rookie season, Miller figures to see the lion’s share of the carries in 2013. His 51 carries for 250 yards as rookie show that he can be productive at a 4.9 yards per carry (YPC) clip. If Miller expands his workload to resemble Bush’s 227 carries a season ago his totals would easily exceed 1,000 yards.
At 5-foot-10, 216-pounds, Miller is by no means a small back that can only work outside of the tackles either. His value will be seen in all aspects of the running game in the upcoming season which will keep defenses honest and likely make the Miami offense as a whole more successful. Given all of the offseason work that he has put in combined with his understanding of the playbook and adjustment to the speed of the game, Miller is ready to have a breakout season in 2013.