Every season, excitement begins to build as players return to Davie for training camp. Fans are left pondering whether their team have gotten better, coaches dissect the talent at their disposal and players work hard to impress.
However, there still appears to be one big question mark hanging over the Dolphins cornerback position. Sure, Vance Joseph now has a set of ‘bigger' players that will be better suited to the press scheme that he will look to employ next season. That will be key, when competing against those bigger receivers that are so in vogue in the NFL right now.
But is this group truly good enough to help this team get over the playoff hump?
Miami will clearly be hoping Byron Maxwell recovers his form, and clearly the Dolphins will be using a scheme better suited to his skill-set than he had in Philadelphia. He's being counted on as the number one corner, and could be a key player next season.
Yet, behind him?
Xavien Howard could be a future starter, but can he be relied upon to be a solid starter during his rookie year?
Bobby McCain is a playmaker and should win the starting slot corner job, but he won't be a number 1, 2 or 3 guy.
Tony Lippett has nice size (6-3), but he's still learning his trade as a corner after being a wide receiver in college. Could he surprise? Yes, but that may be asking too much of him right now.
Jordan Lucas was selected in the sixth round and has experience in both the slot and the boundary, but he should be viewed primarily for special teams next season.
Chimdi Chekwa always showed promise. He's a 4 year NFL veteran, who started 32 games between 2011 and 2014, but he failed to play in a single game last season after being cut from injured reserve by Oakland.
The rest - Ifo Ekpre-Olomu, Tyler Patmon and Lafayette Pitts - will all be lucky to make the team, with perhaps Ekpre-Olomu having the best shot.
Miami need 3 capable starters who can be trusted, and then a good slot corner on top of that. Do the Dolphins have this at present? From next week, it'll become much clearer, but I'm willing to hedge my bets they only have 2 starting caliber corners and a starting slot corner. More talent is needed.
Alex Parish is an Associate Editor at The Phinsider. Be sure to follow me on Twitter@AlexParish89.