Last year, the Miami Dolphins offensive line was atrocious. The line had to deal with injuries, position changes, and no one playing right tackle. This year, the line is looking healthier, and more stable, with Jake Long coming back to play left tackle, Richie Incognito at left guard, Mike Pouncey at center an no longer a rookie, and Jonathan Martin (most likely) at right tackle. All of that just leaves one question - who will replace Vernon Carey at right guard?
So far this offseason, the consensus has been that John Jerry has the inside track to claim the starter's role. However, the team has put tackle Artis Hicks at the position with the first team recently, trying to find the right player to take the position.
Of Jerry in the position, Miami Head coach Joe Philbin said after practice last Monday, "I think he is a bright guy, I like his approach to the game in practice he hasn't made a lot of mental mistakes, he has pretty good awareness out on the football field. Obviously not accustom to that size of a man playing that position in the systems that I have been involved in, so I am interested to see how his conditioning is, how he can respond to 12-play drives and those type of things, but I like what I have seen so far."
Philbin also spoke about where he sees Hicks playing for the team. "Ideally I think his best spot is on the right side, whether it is at tackle or guard, for us is kind of to be determined. That why part of the reason he is moving around a little bit, again what group he is getting the reps with, whether it is the first team or the second team at this stage of the game isn't that important. I think he is getting a boat load of reps, I think he has picked up the system well, he is a professional, it's important to him. I like his demeanor, I like the way he goes about his business every day and so until we get into pads, that will help us further in the evaluation, but real pleased with what he has done so far."
Now comes reports that the Dolphins may still be shopping for a right guard this offseason. According to The Tennesseean newspaper in Nashville (via the South Florida Sun Sentinel) former Titans guard Jake Scott met with the Dolphins last week. Scott has started every game the last four years for the Titans, after starting 57 of 60 appearances with the Indianapolis Colts from 2004-2007. This is his second meeting with the Dolphins.
While a signing does not appear eminent, the fact that the Dolphins are still looking for a guard does signal that the team may not be happy with that they have on the roster right now. Jerry may be losing the position that was his to lose, and Hicks may not have made an impression in his switch from tackle to guard. The Dolphins could still be looking to find the right man to plug into the only real question mark still on the offensive line.
[Note: This video has nothing to do with this article, but I figured I would add it to try to keep getting the watched count up. We are sitting at 2,700 views, in sixth place, right now. We are just 200 views away from breaking into the top five, passing Andrew Luck on the way]