The Miami Dolphins are betting on youngsters rather than experience when it comes to their offensive line and right now that isn’t working. It is not yet time to panic, but there is a lot of work to be done.
Brian Flores has experienced four offensive line coaches in his three seasons with Miami (yes, he’s number 3). Lemuel Jeanpierre is in charge of transforming this unit into something stellar. This is his second season with the Dolphins and his first as a line coach. The former NFL player began his coaching career in 2017 with the Seahawks. Does he have the talent to win the line of scrimmage this year?
As noted above, the Dolphins are all about youth. Matt Skura has the most experience, but he is part of the second team behind third-year player Michale Dieter. A somewhat precocious surprise at the camp. There have been rumors that Skura didn’t look so good when he was there and Dieter seems to be taking a big step forward. It’s good news.
Today we learned that Jesse Davis has a knee injury and while we don’t know the extent of it, the Dolphins will lose another veteran with over a year or two of experience. It also creates a hole in the guard. Earlier this week, we learned that Solomon Kindley had been demoted to the third team. Will Davis’ injury give him a chance to reprise the role of starter?
Miami is pushing hard for Liam Eichenberg to start on the right tackle, but he’s had some ups and downs, which is to be expected. The problem is that once the season starts, you can’t really have ups and downs on Sunday. The Dolphins are also hoping Robert Hunt develops in custody and that Austin Jackson, two picks in the 2020 draft, will be better in year two as well.
The Dolphins’ offensive line doesn’t play well in camp and when the pads came in they were exposed. It’s not exactly uncommon in the early days and weeks of camp, especially with a spinning line. This is the case, again, for the Dolphins. It takes a bit of cohesion to develop and that’s what Dolphins fans should be expecting to see over the next week or so.
Miami will have a practice session or two with the Bears next week and that should shed some more light on player development along the offensive line. There’s plenty of time to get it right and the Dolphins need to be sure their decision to go with the kids is better than adding a quality veteran or two to help those kids learn.