eric winston

Remaining needs for the Dolphins in free agency

Nearly two weeks into free agency, the Miami Dolphins have already addressed two of their most prominent needs however, their work is not yet done. After revamping the recieving core with the additions of Mike Wallace and Brandon Gibson as well as upgrading at tight end with the signing of Dustin Keller, the team is still looking to improve the roster. As the draft approaches, the Dolphins hope that their signings in free agency will allow them to select the best player available rather than passing on elite talent to draft for a need.

With the draft only a month away, its clear which positions offer significant depth and which positions are hit or miss. Sitting at 12, the Dolphins will likely not have the opportunity to select one of the top offensive lineman and the replacement for Jake Long. For this reason, it would be wise to eliminate this need in free agency. The Dolphins have brought in several veterans for interviews including RT Eric Winston, RG Brandon Moore, and RG Lance Louis. With the team's desire to keep Jonathan Martin at left tackle protecting the quarterback's blindside, the 29 year old Winston would be a solid option on the right. The Dolphins also prefer to find an upgrade to John Jerry at guard explaining the numerous visits from offensive lineman in the past week. Moore would be an ideal addition as he has played all 16 games in eight straight seasons proving his durability while being ranked the 4th best guard in the league last season.

Another position with very few can't miss prospects in the draft is defensive end. The Dolphins have been searching for a player to compliment Cameron Wake for some time however, there is no pass rusher in the draft who would be a clear value pick at 12th overall. While there aren't many viable options in the draft, the position features several high calibre players in free agency. The Dolphins have inquired about DE's Elvis Dumervil and Osi Umenyiora, two veteran players who would add another dimension to an already stout front seven. Dumervil has an astounding 63.5 sacks in six seasons in the NFL despite not being the typical prototype defensive end. Last year, Dumervil recorded 11 sacks with 6 forced fumbles which would have been second on Miami's defense to only Cam Wake. A duo of Wake and Dumervil or Wake and Umenyiora would provide a serious challenge for even the best offensive lines.

Cornerback also remains a position of need altough it appears the Dolphins plan to double down at the position in the draft considering the remarkable depth in the first three rounds and the team's abundance of picks (11 in total). If the Dolphins are able to sign an offensive lineman or a defensive end in free agency, it will give them the luxury of implementing the most successful draft strategy; selecting the best player on the board. As the draft continues to shape up, it is looking like that player will be play making wide reciever Tavon Austin who is opening eyes around the NFL and as a result, seeing his stock soar.

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