So what are the Dolphins getting with their offseason acquisitions?
We solicited input from NBC’s Cris Collinsworth and Sirius XM analyst and former Buccaneers general manager Mark Dominik during the recent NFL owners meetings in Orlando:
▪ Receiver Danny Amendola: Collinsworth: “I will take Amendola any day, any time, any way. He’s got a championship heart. He and Julian Edelman are just pit bulls.”
Dominik: “It’s a good signing because Danny played pretty well in his opportunities last year when you saw him still be able to get open. He’s got a natural instinct of where to cut routes off and where to put himself in terms of his body. You can get a year out of Danny Amendola. There’s at least one in there still. His body will catch up with him at some point. He’s a great competitor, always has been.”
▪ Guard Josh Sitton: Collinsworth: “He’s one of the best pass blocking guards in the NFL and a good run player too. A little older [at 31]. He will help Laremy Tunsil, too.”
Dominik: “Laremy Tunsil and Ja’Wuan James will learn a lot from Sitton if they take the time to sit next to him and listen to what he brings because of his journey through the NFL. That’s a real valuable part of Sitton, not only that he’s still tough and physical but he brings what they’re looking for — a different type of culture.”
▪ Defensive end Robert Quinn: Dominik: “That’s a great trade. I know you’re taking on some salary cap. The only thing you worry about is whenever a trade happens, you’ve got to decipher the reason why. When you watch the L.A. tape, it was the discipline of being in the right place at the right time. If he does that for Miami, it will be a home run trade. If he becomes rogue or becomes like I’m going to go make this play, instead of doing what he’s supposed to do, that’s where it gets a little tricky for Quinn when you watch NFL tape. So he’s going to have to buy into the system. And if he does, they will get a great trade, not a good trade. He will be much more comfortable at [4-3] end [than linebacker]. The big thing is the buy-in into the system. If he does, he will be a double digit sack guy next year.”
Collinsworth: “He had the one complete breakout season [19 sacks in 2013]. We haven’t seen that again since. Back issues are tough. I hope he’s healthy because he’s certainly talented enough.”
▪ Receiver Albert Wilson: Dominik: “He’s a consistent player. You are getting a guy you know will do all the things right that you need him to do, to be in the right spot, right time. Good solid signing, and you could always use that speed. A good kid off the field, too.”
▪ Center Daniel Kilgore: Dominik: “It sounded like San Francisco liked Kilgore, said all the right things, then turned around and traded him [after] signing Weston Richberg]. You are bringing in an intense type of person to that locker room that might be a little more different, more vocal. He’s a [decent] center and can also play guard.”
Collinsworth: “He will be a good, solid center. Mike Pouncey was such an institution there, but last year wasn’t his best year.”
▪ Running back Frank Gore: Dominik: “Frank is one of the guys who certainly can get you 700, 800 yards a season. He has proven that every year. I think it’s awesome to be able to go back home to Miami where it all started. Where everyone doubted him coming out with his knees, falls to the third round and is going to be one of the top rushers in NFL history. It’s a real cool signing and I hope Frank can get to the end zone a little more frequently.”
Collinsworth’s overall thoughts on what the Dolphins have done: “When you come in and take over a team, when you have old-time cracks, it’s not really your team. When a president comes in, he doesn’t keep the old Cabinet. You want your people in there. If I ever did it [run a team], I would go in and start as fresh as I could. I don’t mind failing. I don’t mind getting beat. I don’t want to get beat with somebody else’s guys.
“They had some contracts that were dictating what they were able to do. Now they’re going to say let me win or lose or fail or succeed based on what I think they need.”
The one player Collinsworth would have been reluctant to give up, though, was Jarvis Landry: “That production is off the charts. Is he a deep threat? No, but you still catch 100 balls. But I get what they’re doing.”
Dominik: “I wasn’t a huge fan of losing Landry. I think the guy is a really special player. He didn’t have a lot of catches down the field because they didn’t ask him to do a lot of catches down the field. It isn’t his fault. It’s a good receiving corps that’s going to be able to stomach it. Can they afford losing [Ndamukong] Suh against the run? You can just look at the stat log and say he’s not sacking the quarterback. But when you watch the tape, you still see the disruption and tackles for loss and the quarterback hurries. It’s all still there. That is going to be a massive hole. This draft should bring some depth to that position.”