Having allowed 57 sacks, the most in the NFL in 2019, the Miami Dolphins are definitely going to be looking to restructure their offensive line a bit.
Shuffling OL to Blame for QB Pressure
After a lackluster 5-11 season that began 0-7, Miami greatly struggled with consistency up front on the OL resulting in demoralizing quarterback pressure allowed.
The OL obviously isn’t to blame for all of the team’s shortcomings. But when your QB was hit more than any other QB in the league it certainly doesn’t help your case.
Dolphins Draft Three OL in 2020 Draft
To make up for some of their weaknesses in the offense, the team drafted three offensive lineman within the first four rounds of the 2020 NFL Draft.
Restructuring the OL in hopes of strengthening the offense as a unit was definitely in the back of General Manager Chris Grier and head coach Brian Flores’ minds, but they also knew they had to think for the future and protect newly-drafted QB Tua Tagovailoa.
The team drafted the offensive tackle from USC, Austin Jackson with the No. 18 overall pick, the guard, Robert Hunt, from Louisiana with the No. 39 overall pick, and the guard, Solomon Kindley out of Georgia, with the No. 111 overall pick.
Nine Guys in Five Spots?
Last season Miami had a rotation of nine different lineman throughout the season. The guard, Michael Deiter and the tackle, Jesse Davis, were the most consistent starters for the team. Both of them started 15 games during the 2019 season. It’s to be assumed that with seven other guys switching in and out of the team’s OL every other week, that there’s sure to be a lack of chemistry amongst the players of that line.
With Deiter only coming up on his second season, among three rookies that the team drafted to back him up, will allow the OL to keep some youth. These group of guys that could get a chance to work with each other over the next few seasons. With three of the young lineman being guards, there’ll be a sure fight for the starting positions, with some possibly even changing positions.
Let’s Break It Down
It’s more than likely Dieter will keep his starting guard position come the start of the 2020 season. Even though Davis and opposite-side Julie’n Davenport are still the active starting tackles for the team, it could (and maybe even should) be expected that the newly-drafted rookies (Jackson and Hunt) could replace them by the start of the regular season if they perform highly.
Ereck Flowers, who came over in free agency from the Washington Redskins, is anticipated to be a starting guard as well. However, the rookie Kindley could also see playtime if he exceeds expectations. Ted Karras, who came over in FA from the New England Patriots, is also expected to be the team’s starting center, but will see a bit of competition from Keaton Sutherland.