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Dolphins Roster Bubble Watch: The scene after two weeks of camp

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We're now two weeks into camp and certain positions are beginning to take shape for the Dolphins. At other positions, of course, things are as hazy as when camp started. That's why it's time to update our mock depth chart. And remember that the idea behind this is not exactly to predict the depth chart at each position. Instead it's to try to devise what the 53 man roster might look like once the preseason comes to a close.

So let's get into our weekly snapshot of how the 53 man roster might look right now. And this week, I've added a new element - putting in bold the names of the players who are clear locks. This will (hopefully) help us figure out exactly who is on the roster bubble right now.

1st Team 2nd Team 3rd Team/4th Team
QB Chad Henne
Chad Pennington
Tyler Thigpen
RB Ronnie Brown Ricky Williams Patrick Cobbs/Lex Hilliard
FB Lousaka Polite
WR Brandon Marshall
Greg Camarillo
Patrick Turner
WR Brian Hartline
Davone Bess
TE Anthony Fasano Joey Haynos
David Martin
LT Jake Long
LG Donald Thomas
Cory Procter

C Jake Grove Joe Berger
RG John Jerry
Richie Incognito

RT Vernon Carey Nate Garner
1st Team 2nd Team 3rd Team
DE Kendall Langford Charles Grant
Tony McDaniel
NT Randy Starks
Paul Soliai
DE Jared Odrick
Marques Douglas

SOLB Koa Misi
Ike Alama-Francis
Quentin Moses
ILB Channing Crowder Tim Dobbins
ILB Karlos Dansby
Austin Spitler
WOLB Cameron Wake
Charlie Anderson
CB Sean Smith
Nolan Carroll
Jason Allen
CB Vontae Davis Will Allen
S Yeremiah Bell Tyrone Culver
S Chris Clemons
Reshad Jones
1st Team 2nd Team 3rd Team
K Dan Carpenter
P Brandon Fields
LS John Denney

Last 5 On: Patrick Turner, David Martin, Austin Spitler, Quentin Moses, Cory Procter
First 5 Off: Pat White, Ryan Baker, John Nalbone, Andrew Gardner, Nate Ness
Next 5 Off: Roberto Wallace, Marlon Moore, Ryan Grice-Mullen, Andrew Hartline, Chris McCoy

Right now, I have 36 spots on the final roster locked in - in my opinion, of course. That would mean 17 spots remain open heading into the first preseason game. Some thoughts:

  • Will Allen's health will be a factor as to how the roster looks come September. If they don't think he will be ready to go for the season opener, the Dolphins could choose to keep a sixth cornerback at the expense of another position - linebacker, defensive line, or offensive line being the prime candidates to lose a roster spot if this occurs.
  • I don't think the defensive line will be the loser of the roster spot, though. I think there are enough question marks along the line to warrant at least seven and possibly eight linemen on the final 53.
  • Nine offensive linemen is a lot - I'll give you that. But we saw last year that we can go through them in a hurry. This year, in particular, the Dolphins have a couple of injury issues along the line, which likely will result in the extra lineman making the team - at least initially.
  • The battle for the fifth receiver spot is going to be one of the most interesting story lines of the preseason. And how some of these guys perform on special teams - as return men, that is - could play a role. However, we're seeing more and more return practice reps going to guys who are locks for the final roster - Davone Bess, Patrick Cobbs, Brian Hartline, and Nolan Carroll for example - which could mean the Dolphins don't want to keep a guy who will only contribute as a return man. Good news for Patrick Turner - but he'll need to have a solid preseason to hold onto his roster spot.
  • I really don't know how the linebacker unit is going to look come September. Right now, the four highlighted above are the only four who are locks. Dobbins is all but a lock (I'm not ready to give him the nod just yet). The rest is a mystery right now.
  • Jason Allen a lock? I must be crazy, right? Nope. His special teams play will keep him on the roster for one more year. But if he shows nothing as a corner during the season, this could finally be his last year in Miami.