Road to the Super Bowl: How the Dolphins fill roles

Joel Auerbach

With the 2013 Super Bowl a few days behind us, and all eyes starting to focus on next season, looking at what the Miami Dolphins have to do to make it to the 2014 Super Bowl makes sense. On the road to the Super Bowl, the Dolphins will need players to fill seven key roles.

The 2012 NFL season is officially over, with everyone's attention officially turning to how to win next season. While the Miami Dolphins have several needs this offseason, some of the key roles needed for the team to make their way down the road to the Super Bowl are already filled. Here's a look at who fills each of these roles for Miami.

  • Enforcer - Richie Incognito: He's the "second dirtiest" player in the league, according to NFL players. Is there any doubt about who on this team best fits the "enforcer" role?
  • Brain - Mike Pouncey: Not only is Pouncey one of the top centers in the league, in just two seasons, but he is also the leader of the offensive line, calling out protection schemes and making sure quarterback Ryan Tannehill is making the same reads and in the correct play.
  • Technician - Ryan Tannehill: Tannehill made rookie mistakes last year, as most of us expected. Now, if the Dolphins are going to take the next step, it's going to be up to Tannehill. The Dolphins need RT17 to be a technician next year if they want to challenge for the AFC East division title.
  • Loose Cannon - Karlos Dansby: You all heard some of those press conferences. No one has been as much of a "loose cannon" with the media as Dansby since, well, since linebacker Channing Crowder. Seems like the Dolphins have a tradition of middle linebackers who talk a little too much.
  • Motivator - Cameron Wake: This one was a little harder to pick. Dansby could fit this role too, because he's a strong leader and motivator, even if he is not making spectaular plays. However, nothing gets the team, or the fans, as excited as seeing Wake come up from a sack and celebrate. When Wake has a good game, the entire team plays better.
  • Prankster - Incognito: I really tried to stay away from repeating players, but Incognito really is the right guy in this slot as well. incognito is the prankster of the team - there's no way around that. Jake Long may be the right answer here as well, but I wanted to leave it to players who are not scheduled to be free agents this offseason.
  • Muscle - Jorvorskie Lane: Lane gave two players concussion in two separate games - in the preseason last year. He was not as effective in the regular season, but the team also did not use him as much. There's not doubt that Lane can be a punisher on the field, bringing pain behind his 5', 11", 258 pound frame.

What do you think? Who fits each category for the Dolphins? Let us know in the comments below.

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