Analyzing the players who made the Miami Dolphins' 53-man roster:
Quarterback (2): Ryan Tannehill and Matt Moore
Ryan Tannehill: He's made tremendous strides in this new spread offense (86.5 passer rating, 68.3 percent of passes completed), which will utilize his athleticism more and requires accuracy. But is Tannehill a top 15 NFL quarterback yet?
Matt Moore: He's one of the top five backup quarterbacks in the NFL, which should justify his $4M salary for this season. But the Dolphins have discussed trades involving him, and other quarterbacks.
Cut: Seth Lobato
Tailbacks (4): Lamar Miller, Knowshon Moreno, Damien Williams, Orleans Darkwa
Lamar Miller: Miller's speed will allow him to deliver stretch plays, but he needs to become a better inside runner to hold off Knowshon Moreno.
Knowshon Moreno: Moreno's ability to set up blocks should boost the Dolphins' running game, but only if he's healthy. He’s not there yet.
Damien Williams: This undrafted rookie from Oklahoma has been one of camp's more pleasant surprises, but he’s still an unfinished product.
Orleans Darkwa: Darkwa, who produced a team-leading 194 all-purpose yards in the exhibitions season, came on strong late. But his spot isn’t safe.
Cut: Daniel Thomas, Marcus Thigpen
Receiver (5): Mike Wallace, Brian Hartline, Brandon Gibson, Jarvis Landry, Rishard Matthews.
Mike Wallace: Wallace's ability to get open deep makes him one of the NFL's top big play receivers, but he needs chemistry with Tannehill.
Brian Hartline: Hartline's savvy route running and reliable hands will likely help him remain the team's leading receiver.
Brandon Gibson: He's a smart, tough route runner who continues to develop as a dangerous slot receiver. But he’s got competition now.
Jarvis Landry: This former LSU standout, whom the Dolphins selected in the second-round, is the second coming of O.J. McDuffie.
Rishard Matthews: He emerged as a reliable slot receiver last season, and his toughness could help him excel as this unit's top reserve.
Cut: Kevin Cone, Matt Hazel, Damian Williams (Aug. 31)
Tight ends (3): Charles Clay, Dion Sims, Gator Hoskins
Charles Clay: Clay is nursing a sore right knee, but when he gets healthy he should threaten the seam for this offense.
Dion Sims: He was adequate as a rookie last season, but this camp he's made significant improvements as an in-line blocker.
Gator Hoskins: This rookie from Marshall, who led the nation in touchdowns for two college seasons, has a knack for finding the end zone.
Cut: Kyle Miller, Evan Wilson
Offensive linemen (10): Branden Albert, Daryn Colledge, Mike Pouncey, Nate Garner , Ja'Wuan James, Billy Turner, Samson Satele, Shelley Smith, Dallas Thomas, Jason Fox
Branden Albert: He's a forceful pass block, which should be expected since he's a Pro Bowler. But his run blocking needs work.
Daryn Colledge: His experience level and durability helped him lock down the starting left guard spot, but can he stay healthy for his ninth NFL season?
Mike Pouncey: Pushing his rehab of a surgically repaired hip helped him avoid beginning the season on the PUP. He’ll begin practicing this week.
Shelley Smith: He's small compared to the rest of Miami's offensive linemen, but his athleticism should help him with run blocking.
Ja'Wuan Jame: James is a polished pass rusher, who has proven he can be durable. However, this tackles run blocking needs work.
Samson Satele: Satele has started 98 games in his seven NFL seasons, and will hold the center spot down until Pouncey's healthy enough to play.
Billy Turner: The 2014 third-round pick is a violent run blocker when healthy, but he needs to get technically sound, and get past his turf toe injury.
Nate Garner: Garner's versatility had helped him start 19 games in his six seasons with the Dolphins. He plays all five O-line spots.
Dallas Thomas: Thomas has lost his shot to start for the second straight season. At this point he needs to find a reserve role as a swing guard/tackle.
Jason Fox: The Dolphins need this swing tackle to remain on the roster until Turner’s turf toe injury heals. But Fox struggled all camp and isn’t safe.
Cut: David Arkin, Sam Brenner, Tony Hills, Evan Finkenberg
Defensive linemen (9): Cameron Wake, Earl Mitchell, Randy Starks, Olivier Vernon, Jared Odrick, Dion Jordan, Derrick Shelby, Anthony Johnson, Terrence Fede
Cameron Wake: He's one of the Dolphins' all-time best pass rushers, but he's 32, which means durability could become a concern.
Earl Mitchell: Mitchell was signed to help Miami stop the run, and create penetration up the gut of opposing offensive lines.
Randy Starks: Starks has been a solid starter for the Dolphins for the past five seasons, and nothing should change in 2014.
Olivier Vernon: Vernon blossomed as a first year starter in 2013, and another double-digit sack season could be worth $30-40 million next offseason.
Jared Odrick: Odrick's lean body and versatility allows him to excel as both a defensive end and defensive tackle.
Dion Jordan: Jordan is suspended the first four games of 2014 for PED, and when he comes back he might be more useful as a linebacker.
Derrick Shelby: Shelby, a three-year veteran, has been effective in his limited opportunities the past two seasons.
Anthony Johnson: This undrafted rookie's ability to get off the ball quickly should allow him to thrive as a defensive tackle.
Terrence Fede: Fede, the Dolphins' seventh-round pick, is technically raw, but his athleticism allows him to be active in games.
Cut: Garrison Smith, Isaako Aaitui, Tevin Mims, D'Aundre Reed
Linebackers (8): Dannell Ellerbe, Koa Misi, Philip Wheeler, Jordan Tripp, Jason Trusnik, Chris McCain, Jonathan Freeny, Jelani Jenkins
Dannell Ellerbe: Ellerbe has one season to prove he's worth the $8.4 million he's due in 2015. The odds are against him. He need to make impact plays.
Koa Misi: Misi was moved inside because he's intelligent, and reliable, which should help Miami improve against the run.
Philip Wheeler: Wheeler's limitations in coverage have allowed good quarterbacks to expose him. But he's a good blitzer who can help in spurts.
Jason Trusnik: Trusnik is the Dolphins' top special teams contributor, and versatile enough to play all three linebacker spots. He’s this unit’s top backup.
Jordan Tripp: The Dolphins' fifth-round pick needs to spend his rookie season getting bigger and stronger because he can’t shed a block.
Chris McCain: McCain, an undrafted rookie who got kicked out of the University of California his junior season, has consistently flashed rare athleticism.
Jonathan Freeny: Freeny's special teams contributions makes him a difficult player to cut. But his status with the Dolphins isn’t secure
Jelani Jenkins: This former Gator struggled for his second straight camp, but turned up the volume on his play in the final two games, which kept him safe.
Cut: Andrew Wilson
Cornerbacks (5): Brent Grimes, Cortland Finnegan, Jamar Taylor, Will Davis, Sammy Seamster
Brent Grimes: Grimes, a two-time Pro Bowler, is developing a reputation as one of the NFL's best technicians.
Cortland Finnegan: Finnegan's intelligence, aggressiveness and athleticism should help him thrive as Miami's nickel cornerback.
Will Davis: Davis, Miami's 2013 third-round pick, has a knack for finding the ball when it is the air, which has helped him crack the starting lineup.
Jamar Taylor: Taylor rebounded from a difficult rookie season and will compete with Davis for the third cornerback role.
Sammy Seamster: Seamster is a big, physical rookie cornerback who appeared in 44 career games (10 starts) during his career at Middle Tennessee State.
Cut: Kevin Fogg
Safeties (6): Louis Delmas, Reshad Jones, Jimmy Wilson, Walt Aikens, Michael Thomas, Brandian Ross
Louis Delmas: Delmas has a reputation as a head-hunting safety, but he's got to stay healthy to make a significant contribution for his hometown team.
Reshad Jones: Jones won't immediately get an opportunity to redeem himself from his disappointing 2013 season because he'll be suspended the first four games.
Jimmy Wilson: Wilson, who has been serving as the Dolphins nickel cornerback for the past two seasons, will replace the suspended Jones early. But he needs to learn his role as this defense’s center fielder.
Walt Aikens: Aikens, the Dolphins' fourth-round pick, started to blossom once he was moved from cornerback to safety. He played well with a broken hand in the preseason finale.
Michael Thomas: Thomas' versatility, which allows him to play safety and cornerback, should extend his stay in South Florida a few more weeks.
Brandian Ross: This four-year veteran started 13 games for the Raiders last season, contributing 75 tackles, two sacks and one forced fumble.
Cut: Jordan Kovacs. Demetrius Wright, Don Jones (Aug. 31)
Specialists (3): Brandon Fields, Caleb Sturgis, John Denney
Brandon Fields: Fields, who made it to his first Pro Bowl last season, is one of the NFL's best punters.
Caleb Sturgis: Sturgis' groin injury could hinder his performance for a second straight season, which is a major concern for the Dolphins.
John Denney: Denney's reliable long snapper has kept him in a Dolphins uniform for 10 seasons.
Cut: Jake Rogers
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