The annual Miami Dolphins 90-in-90 series here on The Phinsider returns this afternoon with another look at an individual player on the team’s roster. After a run on the defensive side of the ball, we jump over to special teams today to take a look at one of the two long snappers currently on the roster.
The 90-in-90 series is a (almost) daily look at one of the players on the preseason 90-man roster for the Dolphins. We breakdown the player’s 2017 performance, then look forward to 2018, giving reasons why the player could progress or regress this season. We then close with a breakdown of the chances the player has to make the 53-man roster when the regular season begins. The first eleven posts in the series are completed, with wide receiver Leonte Carroo, punter Matt Haack, safety T.J. McDonald, running back Buddy Howell, wide receiver DeVante Parker, defensive end William Hayes, wide receiver Isaiah Ford, safety/cornerback Walt Aikens, defensive end Claudy Mathieu, linebacker Kiko Alonso, and cornerback Xavien Howard all complete. Today, we move to long snapper Lucas Gravelle.
Gravelle signed as an undrafted free agent this year, joining the Dolphins out of TCU, where he played in all 14 games as a senior, recording three special teams tackles. He spent his sophomore and junior years, 2015 and 2016 respectively, at Washington State, playing in all 26 games those seasons, after two seasons at Erie Community College, including a redshrit year.
Why he will progress
Darren Rizzi will work Gravelle hard this summer, and he should develop nicely under the Dolphins’ special teams coordinator. Gravelle should see plenty of playing time in training camp and the preseason, with the Dolphins likely limiting the playing time of incumbent long snapper John Denney, which should help Gravelle develop as well.
Why he will regress
It is hard to say a long snapper regresses, given the limited playing time we will see them - especially when it is an undrafted free agent signing who is not coming in with a lot of expectations. Not making the adjustment to the speed of the NFL would probably be the biggest reason for a regression.
Chances of making the 53-man roster
An undrafted free agent signing at a one-spot position with an entrenched veteran is not a good sign. Gravelle could try to make enough of a name for himself to claim a practice squad spot and be the developmental player to groom behind Denney for whenever the immortal retires, but that does not seem likely.