The Miami Dolphins crushed the Atlanta Falcons on Saturday night, coming away with the 37-17 victory. Of course, it was just Week 2 of the 2021 NFL Preseason and the Falcons were not playing most of their starters while Miami kept their first team on the field through the first half and some into the third quarter. It is not a game that determines what the Dolphins will be in the regular season, but it was a game in which fans should start to believe in what this season could be.
It was also a game in which players continued to battle for roster spots. How did the Falcons game impact our 53-man roster projection? It is time to take a look.
As always, let me know in the comments where you disagree with my prediction. Who do you think I left off the roster that is going to make it, and who would you remove?
Changes: None. Tagovailoa is looking sharp and ready for the regular season.
Running backs (4)
Changes: None. Doaks likely makes the roster at this point, but I think Patrick Laird has an outside shot thanks to special teams play. This could come down to the final preseason game, as well as who Miami thinks they could get through the practice squad.
Tight ends (4)
Changes: None. Miami likely starts with five players on the roster at the position as Cethan Carter makes the final cuts, then immediately gets put on injured reserve, giving Miami the option to bring him back once he fully recovers from a knee injury. Where do they create that roster spot, though?
Wide receivers (7)
Lynn Bowden, Jr.
Note: Will Fuller V is on the roster, but starts the year suspended for the first game.
Changes: Preston Williams added; Now that he has come off the Physically Unable to Perform list, Williams gets added back onto the 53-man roster. Seven wide receivers - eight if you count Fuller as well - is a lot, but the Dolphins are so deep at this position, it is hard to figure out who does not make the roster. That is a good problem to have. Miami should also have a fairly deep practice squad group at the position, given how injury-prone the position has been this summer.
Offensive linemen (9)
Changes: No change. There was a minor adjustment to the list, as Kindley moved up into the top five while Eichenberg fell into the depth players, but that does not change the nine players projected to make the roster. Coleman could be a player who lands on the practice squad if Miami needs to either create a roster spot or would like to add someone else (Robert Jones, Adam Pankey) to the roster for depth on the offensive line.
Defensive linemen (5)
Changes: John Jenkins, Benito Jones off, Adam Butler on; Last week I did not like having only six defensive linemen on the roster, so this week I cut it down to five. Butler gets his rightful place on the roster after I have left him off in the past. I still like Jenkins and Jones, but I need roster space and they land on the wrong side of the cut line. Jason Strowbridge and Jonathan Ledbetter could be practice squad targets.
Andrew Van Ginkel
Changes: Shaquem Griffin off, Sam Eguavoen on; This move is obvious after the Falcons game. With four sacks and a safety, Eguavoen has to make the roster. Yes, it was one preseason game against backups for the most part, but Eguavoen was always a bubble player that I pushed off the roster because the Dolphins added Griffin so close to camp. Griffin’s story is obviously one for which fans should root, but Eguavoen has outplayed Griffin at this point.
Changes: None. I still have Fejedelem on the roster at this point, but see him as a bubble player who would likely make it more as a special teams player than as a defensive depth player. McCourty can move back to safety if needed.
Long Snapper (1)