The Miami Dolphins and New Orleans Saints finished their respective preseason schedules last night with a match up at Sun Life Stadium. Although the Dolphins came out on top 24-21, the point of the game was not the win or loss, but rather the execution by the players deep on each team's roster ahead of Saturday's roster cut deadline.
What Miami players helped themselves during the game? Which ones hurt themselves? We take a look in our stock up/stock down review of the game.
Stock up: Michael Egnew, tight end. The much maligned second year player had a good game. He finished the game with just one catch for five yards, but the two targets he did not pull in were bad passes from Devlin, with Egnew having a step in the end zone on both attempts. He was also physical all night, which was the biggest knock against him last year, blocking players in both pass protection and in run blocking. Overall, it was a good night for Egnew.
Stock down: Pat Devlin, quarterback. The game ended on a positive note for Devlin, who connected with Marvin McNutt on a 57 yard bomb to take the 24-21 lead. But, before then, it was not pretty for Devlin, who was consistently off target. He finished the game 22-for-38 for 259 yards, two touchdowns, and two interceptions, giving him a 57.9 passer rating. Devlin could end up missing the roster if Miami needs to find the space to keep someone else, and last night's performance did not do much to help Devlin argue against being let go.
Stock up: Jason Trusnik, linebacker. The Dolphins entered the game with a lot of question marks among the reserve linebackers. Trusnik did everything he could to put himself on the good side of the cut line with a four tackle, one fumble recovery performance. Trusnik could still be cut come Saturday, but he definitely forced the coaches to at least think twice about letting the veteran go.
Stock down: Evan Rodriguez, fullback. Miami is trying to find a way to get the same contribution out of a collection of tight ends that they would have gotten from Dustin Keller this year. While Rodriguez is not a true tight end, the team planned to use him as an h-back, hybrid fullback and tight end. Last night, he was not bad by any stretch of the imagination, but he definitely did nothing to claim a roster spot, and in the final preseason game, that's not a good thing for a bubble player.
Stock up: DeAndre Presley, cornerback. Presley's night was pretty much the opposite of Devlin's. While devlin ends up stock down during an inconsistent night, Presley saw his stock rise during the night, despite a few bad plays. The cornerback was beat a couple of times, but ended up with a game high six tackles and the game sealing interception with less than a minute to go. It may not have been enough to make the Dolphins carry six cornerbacks, but, it might just have been.
Stock down: Nate Garner, offensive line. Garner is the utility offensive lineman, able to line up anywhere and fill in if an injury happens. Thursday night, he showed that his utility role probably should not include left tackle. Garner was beaten badly at least once, and let pressure get to Devlin a few more times. It simply was not a good performance from Garner, and should have sealed Will Yeatman onto the roster as Jonathan Martin's understudy.
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