The Miami Dolphins have added six rookies during the 2019 NFL Draft, four on offense and two playing defense. How do those six players fit into the roster? Will the Dolphins find rookies thrust into starting roles this year? And where does Josh Rosen, for whom the Dolphins traded from the Arizona Cardinals during the second round of the Draft, land on an updated depth chart?
This depth chart does not include the undrafted free agents, just because they are not official yet. The Dolphins are continuing to sign prospect who were not selected, and with the sheer numbers they are adding, a few of them are likely to make the roster this year. As of this writing, reports have indicated Miami signing:
- Ryan Anderson, OT/G, Wake Forest
- Kyron Brown, CB, Akron
- Deion Calhoun, G, Mississippi State
- Wes Farnsworth, LS, Nevada
- Terrill Hanks, LB, New Mexico State
- Motre Hartage, CB, Northwestern
- Dewayne Hendrix, DE, Pitt
- Tyler Horton, CB, Boise State
- Trenton Irwin, WR, Stanford
- Jonathan Ledbetter, DE, Georgia
- Aaron Monteiro, OT, Boston College
- Nik Needham, CB, UTEP
- Rob Rolle, S, Villanova
- Tre Watson LB, Maryland
- Preston Williams, WR, Colorado State
They have also extended minicamp invites to:
- Jhavonte Dean, CB, Miami
- Darrell Langham, WR, Miami
- Mike Smith, LB, Miami
You can check out our UDFA rumors/signings tracker to keep up with any further additions for the Dolphins.
Dolphins offense (33)
The Dolphins traded for Rosen during the Draft, but it seems like Fitzpatrick is still slotted as the starter right now. It should be an open competition between those two throughout the summer, and the Dolphins need to see Rosen at some point to know if they have a player who can become a franchise quarterback. The trade for him was essentially a no-risk, high-reward move, but the Dolphins need to know if there is a reward before they head into 2020 looking to add another quarterback. Falk and Ruddock will battle for potential third position on the roster.
Half backs (4)
Drake and Ballage are clearly the top two on the depth chart. Drake should see more usage this year, with whatever behind-the-scenes drama he had with the last coaching staff out the door now. Gaskin and Farrow both could make the roster so Miami has depth at the position, especially if they both can show some special teams ability.
If the Dolphins are going to have a fullback option, and it appears they will since they drafted Cox, the rookie should make the roster. The fullback is a position that has fallen off some in the NFL, but Cox could provide lead blocking play that could free up Drake and Ballage, but he is not just a fullback. In college, he played half back, tight end, and receiver as well, so the Dolphins have option in exactly how they employ Cox.
Wide receivers (8)
This is a deep group - assuming the injuries from last year are a thing of the past now. Stills will continue to be the top receiver in the group, while Parker, Wilson, and Grant should all see plenty of playing time. Butler and Ford could see the field as well, while Horn and Louis have to prove themselves this summer.
Tight ends (5)
Gesicki goes to the top here because that is where he will hopefully move as he puts his rookie-year experience into a second-year development. Allen claims the second spot for now, though O’Leary and Smythe should see time this summer to compete for that role.
Offensive line (11)
Laremy Tunsil (LT)
Michael Deiter (LG)
Daniel Kilgore (C)
Jesse Davis (RG)
Zach Sterup (RT)
The offensive line is still a work in progress, and there will likely be changes throughout the summer. Tunsil has the left tackle position, but after that any combination of the other 10 players could be used Deiter has a chance as a rookie to claim a spot, and left guard seems to make the most sense. Kilgore is probably still the best center on the roster. Davis could move outside to right tackle, but for now he stays at right guard because that seems to be where the coaches see him playing. That makes Sterup the current right tackle. Asiata should be the primary reserve for the guard positions if he cannot claim a starting position. Prince could be the swing tackle for the Dolphins this year, though Jones-Smith could make a push for it as well.
Dolphins Defense (38)
Defensive ends (4)
This is the biggest question mark on the Dolphins roster right now. The team could be making a more drastic shift to a 3-4 defensive front, which may mitigate some of this, with the linebackers becoming more of the pass rushers (and Harris likely making that switch), but for now, the Dolphins are lacking a pass rush.
Defensive tackles (8)
Durval Queiroz Neto
Wilkins likely assumes the top spot on the depth chart, with Godchaux starting next to him. Spence and Taylor will see plenty of playing time, while Norton and Pittman both could both be solid depth options. Neto and Mbu will need to develop this summer to make the roster, though they both could be practice squad options that would make sense. If Miami is using 3-4 more often, look for the team to keep more defensive tackles on the roster this year as they are used inside and outside as defensive ends.
Andre Van Ginkel
The linebackers will be headlines by Alonso, McMillan, and Baker, just as they were last year. This coaching staff has to play them closer to their strengths, though, so we will hopefully see less of Alonso trying to cover. Allen and Hull seem like they are the top reserves, with Van Ginkel an interesing option to watch this summer. Poling could find a role this year. Special teams will be key for him and the rest of the group. The pass rush ability of the linebackers could be key to the 3-4 scheme.
The cornerbacks are a guess at this point. Howard will lock down one side of the field, and McCain will be the nickel. I still think Tankersley is the second cornerback, but that will depend on if the coaching staff can fix whatever happened to him last year. McTyer, Rowe, Armstrong, and Davis can all factor into the second starting position or be key depth options.
The Dolphins three starting safeties at the two safety positions are Jones, Fitzpatrick, and McDonald. Aikens brings special teams ability to the roster, and he could play both safety or cornerback if needed (like Fitzpatrick). Smith and Lammons add depth to the position. As the Dolphins coaches work to get three starting caliber safeties on the field, they could move McDonald up to play more as a linebacker.
Dolphins Special Teams (3)
Sanders returns as the kicker.
Haack returns as the punter.
Long sapper (1)
Denney will be the long snapper once again, though a long snapper is in the undrafted free agents list, likely to keep Denney from having to play the entire preseason.