The Phinsider Mailbag finally returns today. After not doing a mailbag in Week 8 because of the Thursday night game, then missing last week, I again tried to miss this week but realized it last night. I went back through the last two weeks of mailbag submissions and pulled some questions from each.
If you want to join out mailbag, check back here on The Phinsider on Wednesday. We will post an article asking for your questions. You can always hit me up on Twitter as well, using #AskPhinsider and we will check there for questions next week.
On to this week’s questions:
Is there anything the Miami defense can do to stop Aaron Rogers? - 39 is number 1
The Green Bay Packers have not been the Packers we are used to seeing this year, but Rodgers is still the elite of the elite. Miami’s defense has to play lights out football for the entire game if they do not want to be picked apart. That will start with the pass rush. Last week against the Jets, the Dolphins were able to get after Sam Darnold, but this is a different level of talent now, and Rodgers will make Miami pay if they cannot get to him,
In the secondary, Xavien Howard should be fine, and if Minkah Fitzpatrick can again play opposite Howard, allowing Bobby McCain to move back to the nickel position, the Dolphins could have success. Relying on a rookie against one of the greats is worrisome, though.
Trying hard to find a reason to give a damn about Reshad Jones after he pulled himself from a game. Can you help a brother out? - jonman
I know there are a lot of articles and reports circulating about what exactly transpired with Jones taking himself out of the game, but none of them really know what happened. There has been talk about how a player quitting on his team is the ultimate sin and that the Dolphins threw Matt Burke under the bus by taking Jones’ side of this - without any real confirmation of what Burke supposedly did. All we know is there was some sort of miscommunication, and it led to this weird situation.
Here is why you should not care about any of this anymore - no one on the Dolphins seems to care. Normally, a player pulling himself out like that is unforgivable, and the coaches and teammates let you know it. With Jones, everyone seems to agree that there was a reason for what happened, and everyone seems to be ready to forget about it. On Sunday, unnamed players and named players all seemed to agree that, if Jones took himself out of the game, he had a reason.
If the 52 other players on the roster and the coaching staff are not shunning Jones, why should you?
Brendel has been activated, does he start this week at center? Larsen is a backup guard, who on this team may be able to play better than him? Maybe our present center moving to Larsen’s spot and Brendel as our center going forward? - Dolfanjoe
If I were the Dolphins coaches, I would not make that move. I would consider seeing if Jake Brendel could move to guard and replace Ted Larsen. I just believe you never want to change your center unless you absolutely must. That center-quarterback exchange is so vital to success that you do not mess with it if it working. Sure, Brendel and Brock Osweiler could get on the same page pretty quickly and would have a whole week to work on it, but I would leave Travis Swanson at center and look at Brendel as the backup center and potentially starting guard - or Wesley Johnson could have a shot at the guard spot as well if needed. Why change two offensive line positions when you could change one and see if that works?
That said, I do not feel like any change is going to happen, at least this week, unless Larsen’s neck injury will not allow him to play.
Sterup gave up 3 sacks at right tackle, Young was nearly as awful at left tackle against the Bengals. Do you think the Dolphins will finally activate both on game day, so that an injury at offensive tackle doesn’t wreck the whole offence? - jonman
Any normal week, I would immediately say no, you pick one and you live with it. This week, I might actually consider keeping both active just because both Laremy Tunsil and Ja’Wuan James are banged up. The other option would likely be to move Jesse Davis outside if required, then put someone into his guard spot.
Any chance Asiata ever plays a snap for us? - BuckeyeFin
Isaac Asiata is a weird case for the Dolphins. When he came to the team, they flat out stated he would effectively redshirt his rookie season, then become a factor after that. Now, it looks like they are giving him a second redshirt season by keeping him on the practice squad. I am not someone who likes to make judgment on players until they have at least three years in the league. Asiata, however, is frustrating. Miami needs offensive line help, and he is someone who it would make sense to look for that help. I think he plays eventually, I just do not know when - and I am not locked into that answer.
Has the game changed so much does the middle linebacker not mean what it used too? Bouniconti, Offerdal, Thomas…shouldn’t the Phins always be on the lookout for the “next” one or has the passing game become so prevalent that corners, linemen and outside guys are just more important now? - TakodaIndiana
That is what Raekwon McMillan will hopefully become. They have selected a linebacker in the second round and the third round the last two drafts. They are looking for linebackers, and McMillan and Baker are developing into solid players. The game is different than even just a few years ago, so the Zach Thomas type of player is not as prevalent, but the Dolphins are definitely investing in the position, and, McMillan may never become a player like Thomas - who should be in the Hall of Fame - but the Dolphins are expecting him to be a very good middle linebacker.
Does the fact that Miami did not move DeVante Parker at the trade deadline mean that we are now certain to pick up his 5th year option? From the trades involving WRs that were made around the league, it seems that Parker would surely have fetched at least a midround pick, so it seems unlikely they would choose to let him go after this season for nothing. - Redwood_
I think all it means is (a) there was not a huge market for Parker and (b) the Dolphins have a need at wide receiver. They are not going to use his fifth-year option. I just do not see a way to justify paying a receiver who has just over 2,000 career receiving yards and less than 150 receptions something near $10 million for a season. I also do not think that means Parker will not be with the team next year - just not at that price.