Many analysts have placed the Miami Dolphins at the top of the AFC East after a fantastic offseason. With Tom Brady no longer on the New England Patriots, the AFC East is wide open. Josh Allen of the Buffalo Bills is the only quarterback in the AFC East to start in a playoff game.
Brian Billick’s take on Miami
Former NFL coach Brian Billick added the Dolphins to the list of playoff contenders. “They transformed this team in a division that for the first time in 15 years is truly in play,” Billick said. The Dolphins moved quickly in the offseason to secure crucial players to the roster, adding Byron Jones to pair with Pro Bowler Xavien Howard. The Dolphins also added Auburn’s Noah Igbinoghene and Texas safety Brandon Jones in the Draft. Not forgetting Kyle Van Noy, Elandon Roberts, and Kamu Grugier-Hill who all started their football with the Patriots. The Dolphins should have a top defense come 2020.
The ‘Phins trade for Breida
Running back was an area of concern for fans, and analysts alike. Having multiple opportunities in the Draft to select a running back, the team made a trade instead. On day three of the NFL Draft, ESPN’s Adam Schefter reported, that the Dolphins would be sending a fifth round pick to the San Francisco 49ers for Matt Breida. Over three seasons, the 25 year old has had a hefty 5.0 yards per carry average. A versatile back whether catching or running the ball. Next-Gen Stats tracked the running back as the fastest ball carrier in the league. The 49ers will have Breida on the books for another season after singing a restricted free agent tender.
Jordan Howard signs with Miami
The Dolphins also signed Jordan Howard to a two-year $10 million contract. In four seasons — three with the Chicago Bears and one with the Philadelphia Eagles — Howard accumulated 3,895 yards and 30 touchdowns on the ground. A strong pass catching back, Howard has 82 receptions for 637 yards, making him a solid duel-threat option.
Aside from the one-two punch of Howard and Breida, the Dolphins roster also has Patrick Laird and Myles Gaskin as their third and fourth options. The team hasn’t had a dynamic duo in the backfield since Ronnie Brown and Ricky Williams split carries Knowing that they were using their first-round pick on Tua Tagovailoa they opted to protect their investment. As they passed on Georgia’s D’Andre Swift and Ohio State’s JK Dobbins, the Dolphins rounded out their offensive and defensive lines. Also adding depth to their secondary, the Dolphins made the most of their 11 draft picks.