- Jul 30, 2004
- Reaction score
- Huntsville, AL
This topic has been beaten into the ground already. But the question will still linger until the Dolphins find that player to replace the greatest pass-rusher in franchise history.
The Dolphins have a huge hole at outside linebacker. Cameron Wake might eventually become a dominant pass-rusher. But as of now, he's struggling to beat out Charlie Anderson for a starting job. Koa Misi, Miami's second round draft pick, has the makings of a very good all-around outside linebacker. His versatility to rush the passer or drop into coverage make him a great fit on the strong side. But a dynamic pass-rusher he is not.
So where will the sacks come from this season?
That's perhaps the single biggest question facing this team right now. Charlie Anderson and Quentin Moses have combined for 10 sacks in their careers. Koa Misi had just 11 sacks in three seasons at Utah. Cameron Wake had 5.5 sacks last year and possesses the most upside of all the potential pass-rushers.
According to ProFootballFocus, Wake participated in just 167 defensive snaps. So his 5.5 sacks and 20 quarterback pressures are impressive. But most of those snaps came with Wake's hand in the ground when the Dolphins went with four down linemen in nickel and dime packages. That means Wake remains relatively inexperienced as a stand-up outside linebacker.
Anderson, meanwhile, had 2 sacks and 6 pressures in 150 defensive snaps. And Moses saw just 43 defensive snaps, tallying one sack and one pressure. Taylor, meanwhile, picked up 7 sacks and 20 pressures on 828 snaps - though many of those snaps did not have Taylor rushing the quarterback.
Strictly based on numbers, Anderson and Wake do project to make up for the sacks and pressures lost from JT's departure. But there are two problems here. One - the Dolphins also lost Joey Porter, meaning they have to make up for his sack production. And two - projecting numbers means nothing. The fact of the matter is I have not seen anything on the field to make me think Anderson or Moses can become legitimate pass-rushers.