The Dolphins’s second depth chart does not possess any major surprises, but there are some interesting subplots worth noting.
1. To start with, the quarterback situation played out as most of us expected it to with all of the healthy quarterbacks moving up one slot, and David Garrard being placed at 4th string because of his injury. It appears that the Dolphins want to wait and see about Garrard‘s recovery time. If his recovery time is closer to 4 weeks than 2 weeks, the Dolphins may be forced to release him. In the mean time, another quarterback competition is brewing between Moore and Tannehill. For the time being Moore is winning, but he needs to show something and soon because last year’s performance alone will not do it for this coaching staff especially in light of Ryan Tannehill‘s progress. As for Pat Devlin, I am becoming increasingly convinced that the Dolphins will keep him on the 53 man roster, he has impressed a lot of people.
2. The wide receiver situation, like the quarterback situation, has experienced a significant change because of the release of Chad Johnson. The depth chart reveals that Marlon Moore was the largest beneficiary of the release Johnson as he has moved up to second string. Moore was quiet in the Dolphins’ first preseason game, but was praised by coach Joe Philbin. Also of note is the 4th string wide receivers of Brian Hartline, Clyde Gates, Chris Hogan, and Rishard Matthews. I imagine Hartline‘s spot on the depth chart reflects nothing more than the fact he will not play in the Dolphins’ 2nd preseason game against the Panthers. As for Gates, it looks like his days in Miami are numbered. Lastly, Rishard Matthews was one of the standouts in the first preseason game with several big kickoff returns, but his placement on the 4th string and his complete absence on the KOR depth chart is not a good sign for him.
3. The defensive depth chart remains unchanged from last week. This is particularly important as it means that Vontae Davis remains on the second string. Davis‘ performance against Tampa Bay was nothing spectacular as he was beaten for a big play, but then again Sean Smith had his own struggles as well. I am a little surprised that Ryan Baker did not move up the chart as he was one of the defensive stars against Tampa Bay. All in all, I appears Kevin Coyle understands that it is hard to assess defensive players in the preseason.
3. As noted earlier, the biggest surprise on the special teams depth chart is that Rishard Matthews is not listed a KOR anymore even though he excelled at that role against Tampa Bay. Marcus Thigpin remains atop the KOR depth chart, but he needs to be able to play in order to show something if he wants to remain at that spot and on the team moving forward. As for PR, it seems likely that Bess will be the teams PR during the season, but they do not want to risk injury during the preseason.