It hasn't been too often that I have disagreed with this coaching staff over the past year and a half. But this one I just don't agree with.
We haven't really talked about it much, but last week the Dolphins rotated rookies Sean Smith and Vontae Davis. Smith got the start, but the two rotated every two possessions. As it actually turned out, it was Davis who saw more reps than Smith despite not being the actual starter because he was on the field for Atlanta's longer drives.
On Wednesday, Tony Sparano confirmed that this will again be how he handles the two rookie corners in week two. Said Sparano, when asked about playing one more than the other:
"I’m not in really a hurry to that right now. They’re both good players. I kind of like seeing both of them play. But if it happens because one guy just completely takes it over and that’s the way it goes."
"If I’m just looking out there and I’m thinking there’s no way I can leaves this guy off the field, then that’s what we’ll do. Until then, I think I’ll rotate them."
I can't say that I agree with this move. Sean Smith outplayed Vontae Davis in camp and in the preseason. He earned his starting role and I don't see how it benefits the Dolphins to have Smith off the field for certain drives as part of a rotation.
From what I've seen, Smith is the team's second best cornerback right now. How does it help the Dolphins to not have their second best corner on the field on every play? Yes, I do think you need to find as many snaps as possible for Davis, too. After all, he and Smith will both be starters for this team at some point in the future. So we do need to get Davis snaps so he can progress. But not at the expense of Smith - perhaps the secondary's best true playmaker.
I'm sure that this odd arrangement also doesn't help either cornerback get into a rhythm. There could be times when either cornerback probably ends up sitting out for 30 to 45 real minutes. After being on the sidelines for that long, how can you expect either of the players to step onto the field and be effective?
I guess we'll see what happens on Monday night. But definitely put me down as "not in favor" of this interesting - to say the least - idea.