The Miami Dolphins continued to look for ways to improve their roster yesterday with the signing of offensive lineman Danny Watkins. The 2011 first round pick was waived by the Philadelphia Eagles in the final round of roster cuts, and, after clearing waivers, had picked up some interest from a couple of teams, but then signed with the Dolphins.
But, why was a 2011 first round pick suddenly available? What should Dolphins fans expect from Watkins? I turned to JasonB over at SB Nation's Eagles blog Bleeding Green Nation for an idea.
The main problem with Watkins is that he really failed to grasp the complexities of any of the systems he played in. He struggled mightily in pass protection but showed some ability in the run game.
He didn't even start playing football until college so he really started out far behind most rookies in his basic understanding of the game. Maybe that wouldn't have been the biggest thing had he not been the oldest player drafted in the first round in over 30 years (he was 26).
He just never caught up and so far hasn't really shown any signs that he's getting closer.
He's a really great guy and he's got the size and strength to do the job, so who knows? But I haven't seen anything to suggest he'll be more than a fringe roster player at this point.
As for why the Eagles let him go? Aside from the whole not being very good thing, the current regime didn't pick him and aren't beholden to him.
Miss any of our coverage from Dolphins cut day? Take a look back.
Jason's comments seem in line with what the Eagles' general manager, Howard Roseman, said after the Watkins release. "When you watched Danny play, the toughness, the hockey-playing aspect of him, never translated to Philadelphia, and that's one of the things that I told him today, was that when you watched him at Baylor and when you watched him at the Senior Bowl and when you met him, he had this innate toughness about him," Roseman said, according to CSNPhilly.
"Me and the scouts went on the road and we found players," Roseman continued. "Obviously there were things we liked about Danny Watkins, and I'm telling you on that evaluation, I was wrong. I thought he was going to be a good player in this league."
Watkins played well at Baylor, and could, hopefully, do well with a fresh start in Miami. At least, that's what the Dolphins and Watkins have to be hoping.
Thanks to JasonB for taking the time to answer my questions about the Dolphins newest signing.