Miami Dolphins

Miami Dolphins claim receiver Justin Hunter off waivers

Miami Dolphins cornerback Bobby McCain (28) intercepts a pass intended for Tennessee Titans wide receiver Justin Hunter (15) during the first half of an NFL preseason football game, Thursday, Sept. 1, 2016 in Miami Gardens.
Miami Dolphins cornerback Bobby McCain (28) intercepts a pass intended for Tennessee Titans wide receiver Justin Hunter (15) during the first half of an NFL preseason football game, Thursday, Sept. 1, 2016 in Miami Gardens. AP

The Dolphins collect wide receivers like kids collect Pokémon.

They grabbed another one Sunday, claiming ex-Titan Justin Hunter off waivers.

To make room, the Dolphins cut veteran Griff Whalen. The receiver swap left the Dolphins with six receivers on their roster.

The other five: DeVante Parker, Jarvis Landry, Kenny Stills and rookies Leonte Carroo and Jakeem Grant.

Parker is dealing with a pesky hamstring injury, and it's unknown if he'll play next Sunday in Seattle.

Hunter is another big target for Ryan Tannehill. He's 6-foot-4. A second round pick in 2013, Hunter never really blossomed in Tennessee. He's caught just 68 passes for 1,116 yards in his three-year career.

Hunter, who fell out of favor in his final year in Tennessee, has the same receivers coach he had last year with the Titans: Shawn Jefferson.

Here's what Jefferson said about him in June 2015: "A lot of times, new receivers come into the league with the physical tools, but the mentality hasn’t caught up,” Jefferson told The Tennessean.

“We’re seeing his mental catch up to his physical skills now. He’s making some plays. It’s like now he expects to make them, when before he was unsure. He goes to the line now like, ‘Give me this rock.’ And that’s what you want to see. There comes a time we’ve got to s--- or get off the pot, and this is his moment."

But Hunter played just 376 snaps in 2015.

He has consistently failed to meet expectations.

In June, coach Mike Mularkey said: "I’m asking him to step up and be more aggressive about it —to look at the guy across from him and tell him, ‘You can’t cover me.’ He just needs more confidence in his body language and everything about him, he’s got such talent. I think he’s got to believe he’s got the talent."

“I want him to be successful. I’m on his side. What’s it going take to get you to play at the level we want you to play at?"

In 2015, then-coach Ken Whisenhunt said of Hunter: "At some point, you either get it or you won't be in this league anymore. That's the natural order of the NFL."

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