By Tyler McMullen @Direct_Snap on August 13, 2014
The Miami Dolphins are looking for their first preseason victory Saturday night against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, but in reality, it's the play of the younger players that truly matters in the preseason rather than picking up a "W".
Here are five Miami players to watch on Saturday night.
Tyler McMullen is a Miami Dolphins writer for RantSports.com. Follow him on Twitter and “like” him on Facebook, and add him to your Google network.
Aikens has a nice chance to make this roster as the team's third or fourth safety option after being selected as a corner in May's NFL Draft. Aikens has looked solid at times at free safety, but he surely needs to work on his tackling to become a better safety prospect. With Reshad Jones serving a four-game suspension this season, Aikens may be the team's top backup with S/CB Jimmy Wilson filling Jones' position in the starting lineup.
Turner is still in a great position to see significant playing time this season at either guard spot if he can prove that he can be a solid contributor in run blocking situations. He could challenge incumbent starter Dallas Thomas at the right guard position if Thomas struggles this preseason. I love what Turner brings to the table as a run blocker, but he will have to prove his worth as a pass blocker inside to make an impact.
Darkwa could actually be a dark horse candidate to make Miami's 53-man roster as a goal-line back. The former Tulane running back has intriguing size, but he was limited in Miami's Week 1 loss to Atlanta due to injury. The majority of Miami's backs are dinged up, giving Darkwa a chance to showcase his stuff Saturday night against an athletic Tampa Bay defense. At this point it's Darkwa, Thomas and Williams vying for that short-yardage back role.
Johnson is a guy who I want to see succeed at the NFL level, and I would love for the former LSU defensive tackle to stick with Miami for the majority of his career. He has all of the tools to be a dominant defensive tackle and could learn wonderful tricks from the trio of Randy Starks, Earl Mitchell and Jared Odrick. Johnson has a chance to beat out AJ Francis and many others for Miami's fourth defensive tackle role. Let's see what he's got.
Tripp is such an intriguing prospect at the linebacker position due to his athleticism, football IQ and ability to just fly around and make plays. He needs to become a more physical player, however. Due to the questionable play of starters Philip Wheeler and Dannell Ellerbe, Tripp has a prime chance to make a name for himself Saturday night and put his name into the conversation as a player the coaching staff must consider plugging next to Misi.
December 24, 2014 by Kevin Saito
The Raiders are trending in the right direction, but still have areas of need. Here are their five biggest needs ahead of the 2015 draft. Read More
December 24, 2014 by RantSports Staff
Previewing the Week 17 matchup between the Bengals and Steelers. Read More
Previewing the Week 17 matchup between the Rams and Seahawks. Read More
Previewing the Week 17 matchup between the Cardinals and 49ers. Read More
December 24, 2014 by Terri Washington
The NFL Pro Bowl does nothing for anyone. Everyone hates it and here is why. Read More
Previewing the Week 17 matchup between the Raiders and Broncos. Read More
Previewing the Week 17 matchup between the Lions and Packers. Read More
Previewing the Week 17 matchup between the Saints and Buccaneers. Read More
Previewing the Week 17 matchup between the Eagles and Giants. Read More
Previewing the Week 17 matchup between the Panthers and Falcons. Read More
Previewing the Week 17 matchup between the Bills and Patriots. Read More
December 24, 2014 by Connor Fulton
See why Jamie Collins and Devin McCourty should have earned Pro Bowl nods over Clay Matthews and Tashaun Gipson. Read More