With the second day of training camp under way for the 2013 Miami Dolphins, the excitement surrounding the team continues to grow. The potential of second year quarterback Ryan Tannehill connecting with new additions like wide receiver Mike Wallace and tight end Dustin Keller has fans seeing the team moving in the right direction. However, things might be looking bleak for second year tight end Michael Egnew.
Drafted in the third round of the 2012 Draft, Egnew was expected to give the Dolphins the pass catching, seam threatening tight end they so desperately needed. Instead, he spent most of the season inactive on game day, and, when injuries finally elevated him to the game day roster, he failed to catch a pass.
Fans quickly turned on Egnew, and, given offensive coordinator Mike Sherman's Hard Knocks quote last preseason ("If I were the GM, I would cut you right now."), it does not seem that Egnew has much support from the coaches either.
During day one of training camp, Egnew spent the entire practice working with the third and fourth team offenses. He was joined for most of the day by rookie tight end Dion Sims. However, Sims eventually moved over to the main field, joining Dustin Keller and Charles Clay with the first and second teams.
Egnew seems mired deep on the depth chart. With training camp in just its second day, is Egnew already on the roster bubble?
Teams typically do not give up on third round draft picks a year after selecting them. However, this has been anything but a typical offseason for the Dolphins. Between free agent signings, an aggressive draft, and a clear concept of what coach Joe Philbin wants for the team, the Dolphins have taken on a new look for 2013. Egnew simply may not fit that ideal.
Egnew spent the offseason working on his strength, including working with an MMA coach to get better at using his hands. Coming out of Missouri, Egnew was never asked to be an in-line blocker. The Dolphins expect that of him. There lies the issue. Now, it's up to the second year player to prove he can do what he couldn't last year. That's the only way he can get off the second field, and start working with the top of the depth chart.
During today's practices, Egnew did start to turn some heads. Of course, it's a pad-less, one practice, but he did make some good forward movement, highlighted by a tough catch across the middle in traffic. It's plays like that, and an ability to block, that could keep Egnew with the team.
Otherwise, that roster bubble could get dangerously close to popping much earlier than anyone thought possible in April 2012.