Analyzing the Roster Moves

The Dolphins' moves to get down to the NFL roster limit were sure to include some interesting ones, and that's just how it played. We break down the moves, by position, and examine how the Dolphins stand five days before their season opener.

Quarterback

Roster moves: None

On the roster: Daunte Culpepper, Joey Harrington, Cleo Lemon

Analysis: This was a slam dunk from pretty much the start of training camp, and Lemon's impressive performance in the preseason finale only served to provide more confidence in this group as a whole.

Running back

Roster moves: Waived Kay-Jay Harris and Gerald Riggs Jr.; terminated the contract of Fred Beasley; placed Sammy Morris on the reserve/suspended list

On the roster: Ronnie Brown, Darian Barnes, Travis Minor

Analysis: First things first. It's pretty obvious the Dolphins will add one, maybe two players at this position in the next day or two. The interesting move here was the release of Beasley, who was beaten out for the starting job by Barnes and then couldn't find himself on the roster, probably in part because he doesn't play special teams.

Wide receiver

Roster moves: Waived Fred Gibson, Devin Aromashodu and Marcus Vick; waived/injured Kelly Campbell

On the roster: Chris Chambers, Marty Booker, Wes Welker, Derek Hagan, Cliff Russell

Analysis: The big story here was Russell making the team and Vick getting cut. This came as a bit of a surprise because Vick played well in the preseason and appears to have a bigger upside than Russell. Vick probably will be re-signed to the practice squad if he clears waivers. The big disappointment at this position was Campbell's inability to stay healthy, which led to his release.

Tight end

Roster moves: Waived Teyo Johnson and Keith Heinrich

On the roster: Randy McMichael, Justin Peelle, Jason Rader

Analysis: Totally expected after Rader had a strong preseason and cemented his roster spot.

Offensive line

Roster moves: Waived C.J. Brooks, Tony Pape and Orrin Thompson; terminated the contract of Mike Pearson

On the roster: L.J. Shelton, Jeno James, Rex Hadnot, Bennie Anderson, Vernon Carey, Joe Berger, Wade Smith, Damion McIntosh, Joe Toledo, Anthony Alabi

Analysis: The Dolphins needed to keep an extra O-lineman because of the injuries to Toledo and Berger, both of whom will miss time at the start of the regular season. No surprises among who was kept and cut.

Defensive line

Roster moves: Waived Ben Ishola and Josh Shaw; placed Manuel Wright on the reserve/non-football injury list

On the roster: Jason Taylor, Kevin Carter, Keith Traylor, Vonnie Holliday, David Bowens, Matt Roth, Dan Wilkinson, Jeff Zgonina, Kevin Vickerson, Fred Evans

Analysis: The Dolphins kept 10 here, but the feeling is they're still trying to make a trade, possibly for a running back, and a defensive lineman probably is their biggest bargaining chip. It's actually difficult to envision the Dolphins going very long with 10 defensive linemen. Difficult to figure out what to make of Wright being put on reserve/NFI. He can't play for the Dolphins this season, but maybe the Dolphins still can't find a taker at some point.

Linebacker

Roster moves: Waived Matt Sinclair; terminated the contract of Sedrick Hodge

On the roster: Zach Thomas, Channing Crowder, Donnie Spragan, Derrick Pope, Keith Newman, Mike Labinjo

Analysis: The only thing mildly surprising here was the release of Hodge, who had been signed in the offseason as a free agent. But the truth is Hodge did virtually nothing in the preseason, so actually we really shouldn't be surprised.

Defensive back

Roster moves: Waived Shirdonya Mitchell, Chris Thompson and Jack Hunt; terminated the contract of Deke Cooper

On the roster: Andre Goodman, Will Allen, Travis Daniels, Michael Lehan, Eddie Jackson, Jason Allen, Yeremiah Bell, Renaldo Hill, Travares Tillman

Analysis: Nothing overly shocking here, except that the thought was the Dolphins would keep either Cooper or Hunt.

Specialists

Roster moves: None

On the roster: Olindo Mare, Donnie Jones, John Denney

Analysis: Like quarterback, this was a done deal from the start of training camp.


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