Tag Archive for: Brian Flores

Josh Boyer observes practice

Dolphins opt to retain Josh Boyer as defensive coordinator

The Miami Dolphins revealed on Friday that defensive coordinator Josh Boyer would be retained for the position. This report comes shortly after the news broke that secondary coach Gerald Alexander would not be staying on the staff.

The decision to retain Boyer comes from a place of desiring continuity. Boyer was handpicked by Brian Flores in 2020 to run his defense after being on his staff as the defensive pass game coordinator & cornerbacks coach in 2019. By keeping Boyer, head coach Mike McDaniel hopes to keep the same level of defense that gave him fits in San Francisco.

“What I saw was a defense that I didn’t want to go against.” McDaniel said during his introductory press conference on Thursday. “What I saw was a collective group of people that I could, from the tape, I knew they loved football and that is such a key component that people undervalue because there’s so many dollars, there’s a lot of fame out there for players, but the teams that win, the people love football and you can feel it and it’s visceral.

“To win (seven) consecutive games, I think it was, (near the) end the season, you could see players playing hard. You could see a defense that again, I’m glad is our defense.”

There is some controversy surrounding the decision. Rumors are swirling that the defense’s sudden turnaround is because of Brian Flores taking over the play calling. However, many Dolphins players attributed the defense’s success to Josh Boyer, if only in part.

“I’ll say giving the offenses different looks.” DE Emmanuel Ogbah said when asked what Boyer had done to fix the defense. “That attributes to practice, just giving our offense different looks just to see how they react to it. Coach Boyer, he’s done a great job disguising plays, all-out blitzes. We kind of went back to our old thing but I’m glad he’s switching it up and giving offenses different looks, confusing them.”

The endorsement by Ogbah speaks volumes. He was asked for specifics into what Boyer contributed to the defense and that was his answer. What’s more, it heavily implies Boyer was still calling plays. For Boyer to give opposing teams different looks, he has to call the play in the first place.


McDaniel further explained the decision during his interview with WQAM on Friday morning, when the news first broke Josh Boyer was staying.

“Here’s another simple formula.” He said. “I feel like if you’ve coached offense your whole career, one litmus test is if you are deciding what defense you play, how awesome would it be if you didn’t want to play that defense? For it to be the defense you have? And the defense was miserable. They crushed us in 2020.

“And I believe in their style. I think versatility is paramount. You say aggressive? I think every play is aggressive, I think when you’re playing a four-man rush, it’s aggressive. I think you do things that give your players an advantage and you keep offenses off balance. So our style of football is going to be aggressive but we might be rushing four, we might be rushing six. It’s the way we play, our fundamentals, how we attack blocks, the way we use our hands, the way we come off the ball, the way we tackle, the way we strike, the way we go after the ball. The list is long. But it’s an aggressive mentality that I really enjoy. And I enjoy the philosophy of the defense and case in point I don’t want to go against it. So why don’t you join us?”

With Boyer as the defensive coordinator in 2021, Miami’s defense was ranked 14th in rushing and 16th against the pass. Obviously, the numbers would have been better if not for the 7-game losing streak after Week 1.

The real reason behind the defense’s drastic drop off may never be known. However, if most of the personnel can stay the same, then at least there is a template to follow. Obviously, some players will leave. But the young core is now firmly in place. The very last quote from Boyer before the season ended offered insight into how he views the game of football.

“The reason I love football so much is because it really kind of relates or correlates to life.” Boyer said on Jan. 4. “Sometimes you get knocked down and all of us have experienced loss or tragedy, and sometimes you have to push forward and put your foot in front of the other for others. That’s why I like football because when you sign up for that, you’re a part of something that’s greater than yourself. We’ve got a lot of good guys, a lot of mentally and physically tough guys in our locker room. We’re excited about the challenge this week, for sure.”

The quote may have been before the Patriots game, but it still stands today. Miami’s players on defense are going to push hard to be successful. True, Brian Flores is gone now. But he would not have picked Boyer or let him continue his job from 2020 if he thought him incapable. Flores fired offensive coaches on a whim. It’s unlikely he would tolerate failure from his defensive coaches if he felt expectations weren’t being met.

Josh Boyer deserves at least one chance to prove he can be a good defensive coordinator. If the defense doesn’t play up to par, then McDaniel will have a new set of options to choose from in 2023. For now, give Boyer the benefit of the doubt and keep the scheme intact.

Luis Sung has covered the Miami Dolphins for numerous outlets such as Dolphins Wire for seven years. Follow him on Twitter: @LuisDSung


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Brian Flores is filing a lawsuit against the Dolphins and the entire NFL

Brian Flores files lawsuit against Dolphins, Giants, NFL

The Miami Dolphins once again find themselves in the middle of a scandal. Late Tuesday afternoon, reports were confirmed that former Dolphins head coach Brian Flores is suing the NFL in a federal class-action racial discrimination lawsuit.

Per the lawsuit, owner Stephen Ross is at the center of the issues in Miami. Flores alleges that Ross offered 100k per loss incurred in 2019.  Also, Flores calls Ross out for trying to make him violate league tampering rules to recruit an elite level QB to Miami. That quarterback is – according to reports by the Palm Beach Post’s Joe Schad – Tom Brady. Brady, obviously, went on to sign with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers instead.

Beyond the Dolphins, Flores implicates the Giants and the Broncos. The lawsuit alleges that the New York Giants had already chosen Brian Daboll as their head coach before Flores had the chance to interview for the job. Texts from New England Patriots head coach Bill Belichick are cited, congratulating Flores for earning the job when the texts were intended for Daboll.

As for the Broncos, Flores states that then-GM John Elway and President Joe Ellis arrived an hour late to the interview, extremely hungover. This indicated to Brian Flores that the Broncos never took him as a serious candidate before they hired Vic Fangio, who is white.


Flores was still considered a finalist for the Houston Texans job before filing this lawsuit. In doing so, he may have destroyed any potential he had to coach in the NFL again, as he may be viewed as a pariah now. However, Flores soon issued a statement after the news broke, stating he understands the implications. He is also prepared for any potential consequences.

Flores’s lawsuit could rock the NFL to its very core. This will undoubtedly lead to an investigation and many, many lawyers will be involved given the seriousness of the implication. Reports are coming out that other minority coaching candidates could potentially join Flores in his cause. They can testify their own experiences in interviewing for jobs. Jobs they knew they would not get.

This sort of situation is precisely what the Rooney Rule – which mandates that all NFL teams must interview at least one minority candidate for job openings – was supposed to prevent. However, it seems to have only exacerbated the issue.

Naturally, the accused parties are pushing back against the accusations. The Miami Dolphins issued a statement refuting Flores’s claims against them.

The New York Giants and the NFL as a whole sent out similar statements.

From a broader standpoint, the entire NFL will have its hands full for the foreseeable future. Many have accused the NFL for not seriously considering minority candidates for decades. Now, this lawsuit will put the league under an uncomfortable microscope.

This situation will be watched carefully over the coming weeks.  It is yet to be determined how potential coaches or even players will respond to this scandal.

Luis Sung has covered the Miami Dolphins for numerous outlets such as Dolphins Wire for seven years. Follow him on Twitter: @LuisDSung


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Miami Dolphins coach Brian Flores has been fired

BREAKING: Miami Dolphins fire coach Brian Flores

In a stunning turn of events, the Miami Dolphins fired head coach Brian Flores one day after the franchise secured back-to-back winning seasons for the first time since 2002-2003. Jay Glazer of Fox Sports speculated that Flores could be on the hot seat after failing to make the playoffs. He also stated that the franchise would be very short-sighted to do so.

Now, they have done so.

According to ESPN’s Jeff Darlington, the firing has nothing to do with the recent availability of Michigan coach Jim Harbaugh. In fact, Darlington claims the Dolphins aren’t even looking at Harbaugh to be Flores’s replacement. Instead, the firing has much more to do with the fact that Flores’s relationship with owner Stephen Ross and GM Chris Grier rapidly deteriorated over the course of the season.

Reports did periodically arise from various sources that Flores was difficult to work with. He has a tendency to come across as the smartest guy in the room, and that attitude sometimes grated on people. Also, reports indicate Flores was fired after refusing to comply with a request to make changes to his coaching staff.

On the other hand, Flores knew how to motivate his players. After going on a 7-game losing streak, he managed to turn the team around and put them on a 7-game winning streak. Unfortunately, he couldn’t lead them over the must-win game against the Tennessee Titans. That knocked them out of the playoffs.

Darlington also reports that the relationship between Tua Tagovailoa and Brian Flores had deteriorated. It got so bad, they did not speak to each other. It was obvious that Flores did not trust Tagovailoa. So, essentially, the decision to fire Flores is an implied commitment to Tagovailoa.

Brian Flores went 24-25 as Miami’s head coach, and he will likely be a very strong candidate for one of the other openings around the league. If he doesn’t become a head coach, he will definitely be a defensive coordinator. Now, the Dolphins will spend the beginning of this offseason looking for someone to fill that void.

Luis Sung has covered the Miami Dolphins for numerous outlets such as Dolphins Wire for seven years. Follow him on Twitter: @LuisDSung


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Duke Johnson has a decision to make about being in Miami

Dolphins hoping to retain former Miami Hurricanes star Duke Johnson

Back in 2012-2014, the Miami Hurricanes found a superstar running back by the name of Duke Johnson. He lit up the University of Miami, made fans chant out his first name in dramatic fashion as he ran for 1,652 yards in his final season there.

It took seven years, but Johnson finally found his way back home. After being drafted in the 3rd round of the 2015 NFL draft by the Cleveland Browns, Johnson was used mostly as a scatback, more valued for his ability to catch passes than running the ball. Eventually he wound up in Houston, and after two seasons there, he agreed to sign on with the Dolphins.

It didn’t take long for him to pick up where he left off.

He ran for 107 yards in Week 15 against the New York Jets, his first time playing in Hard Rock Stadium as the home team since his UM days, and the crowd again chanted his name.

“It just reminded me of college,” he said after that game. “It felt like my college days again. Definitely enjoyed it.”

Johnson repeated the performance in the final week of the season against the New England Patriots, rushing 22 times for 117 yards and a touchdown. Again the chants rang out, and now the Miami Dolphins have a decision to make.

Do they keep Duke Johnson home in Miami?

“Me staying here? Like you said, it’s my home,” Johnson said after the game. “If I didn’t have to leave home, I wouldn’t.”

Naturally, after the performances he’s put together wearing aqua and orange, it seems a no-brainer that the Miami Dolphins should try to keep Johnson around. He’s looked far and away like the best running back on the team.

“I’m hoping that it does.” Johnson said about getting to come back next season. “How confident I am? I really don’t know. I really can’t say because again, it’s above my pay grade. But for me just having an opportunity to come back and play.”

According to Five Reasons Sports Network sources, the Miami Dolphins want to keep Duke Johnson around for at least another one more season, and have already expressed that to him. But Johnson, while staying in Miami would be an ideal situation, hasn’t committed to doing so just yet. Those sources say that Johnson is expecting interest elsewhere, and intends to explore all his options before he simply decides to return to Miami.

Again, his desire to stay home is genuine. But Johnson wants to explore his options to find a situation that will allow him the best chance for success. If he decides that’s in Miami, expect him back. If he sees a better opportunity elsewhere, Miami may have to throw a little extra incentive at him.

Miami still has Myles Gaskin and Gerrid Doaks on the roster. They can also try to retain Phillip Lindsay if Johnson opts to leave. Miami should also heavily consider finally addressing the position in a meaningful way in the draft.


Make no mistake, the Dolphins want to keep Johnson, and they should. But Johnson wants to see what options he has available before he plants his roots back in Miami.

Luis Sung has covered the Miami Dolphins for numerous outlets such as Dolphins Wire for seven years. Follow him on Twitter: @LuisDSung


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Tua Tagovailoa

Tua Tagovailoa adding new weather-based focus to training

.As someone used to living in a tropical climate, it can be a severe shock to the system when the environment drastically changes to a much colder setting. Joints freeze up, more effort is needed to do daily tasks. In the case of football players, your performance could go down. Footballs lose 20% pressure, and for a quarterback, that makes a huge difference.

Unfortunately for the Miami Dolphins, quarterback Tua Tagovailoa suffered from that exact scenario. It was clear during last week’s 34-3 loss to the Tennessee Titans, that Tagovailoa was not just having a bad game. The frigid air and pouring rain made it almost impossible for the island native to create any sort of positive momentum.

Tagovailoa had his worst game as a pro by far in what was his biggest opportunity so far. After a seven-game winning streak, all the Dolphins had to do was win two more times. They would be in the playoffs for the first time since 2016. But instead, Tagovailoa went 18-38, for 208 yards and an interception. Even his signature accuracy was severely hampered by the weather. His passes either sailed over the heads of his intended receivers, or bounced at their feet.

It was a wholly unacceptable performance, even in the eyes of Tagovailoa’s most staunch defenders. Tagovailoa was also very self-critical of his performance in that game, refusing to let the weather be an excuse.

“It played somewhat of a role,” Tagovailoa admitted. “But at the game, you got to go out there and you got to execute the plays regardless of the conditions, regardless of what it is. And, that, we just didn’t do enough of.”

It’s admirable that he’s not making excuses for himself. But anyone who watched the game could tell that the weather was having a very adverse effect on Tagovailoa’s game. There seemed to be no preparation for the weather throughout the week. It’s been said that Hall of Fame coach Don Shula allegedly used to soak footballs in ice water before games he knew his team would be playing in awful weather conditions. Many other coaches have similar plans to help their team get acclimated. But this Miami Dolphins squad looked frozen solid. It speaks poorly to the coaching staff for the entire team – not just Tua Tagovailoa – to appear unready for the challenge.

Now the offseason is fast approaching. Tagovailoa has an opportunity to try and show he’s still worth investing in. No matter what, he fully expects the speculation surrounding his future in the NFL to swirl all over again.

“I think people have their own opinions.” He said. “I’ve heard this the entire time I’ve been here so at the end of the day, I can control what I can control and that’s to be the best version of myself for this team. We’ve got to move on to the next game at this point. We’ll look at the mistakes that we’ve made, make some corrections and move on.”

Now with his fate up in the air, Tagovailoa revealed he has a very specific personal training regimen he intends to take into the offseason. One that he hopes will ensure he’s better prepared in the future.

“We do look at the mistakes that we’ve made after every game that we’ve played and see what we can fix to help us become successful so we don’t make those same mistakes. I think for me it’s being able to simulate the cold weather scenario and trying to throw a ball while it’s wet at the same time in cold weather. A lot of the good teams are cold weather teams as well. I think that is something to take into consideration this offseason for myself. I’ll probably go visit my brother or take a trip somewhere that’s cold and kind of get the feel of that.”

Tua Tagovailoa is going to be under scrutiny for not thinking of this sooner. His team may be the Miami Dolphins – for now – but every other AFC East opponent is a cold weather team. Whether it’s fair to criticize him for this or not is irrelevant. It’s already begun. The fan base has already run out of patience with him. He was advertised as the savior of the franchise. He has not lived up to that remarkable title.

Now, Tua Tagovailoa is at a crossroads in his young career. Fair or not, his performance against the New England Patriots could seal his fate with Miami. Or even potential other suitors. Some oddsmakers recently have the Dolphins listed as 6-point underdogs at home against Mac Jones and the visiting New England Patriots. NFL betting sites have them ranked similarly, expecting Miami to be embarrassed one more time, with Tagovailoa laying another egg even with the pressure off.


It may be too late for Tagovailoa in Miami. But a strong performance against the odds to end the season could at least allow him to salvage his career. Before it comes to a cruel and premature end.

Luis Sung has covered the Miami Dolphins for numerous outlets such as Dolphins Wire for seven years. Follow him on Twitter: @LuisDSung



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Brian Flores

Brian Flores definitively puts Dolphins QB controversy to rest

Brian Flores is many things, but there is at least one thing he is not. He is not particularly fond of repeating himself. Undoubtedly, that’s a trait he shares with the majority of the world. Who wants to say the same thing over and over as if no one heard you the first time? But it seems that the Miami Dolphins head coach has been dealing with this for the past two weeks, as rumors swirl about the status of QB Tua Tagovailoa.

To be clear, Brian Flores has been saying the same thing all through the offseason. Apparently, in his mind only, Flores has been abundantly clear. All of the outside noise, it doesn’t matter. All of those rumors regarding acquiring Texans star QB Deshaun Watson, more noise. But ever since Yahoo Sports’s Charles Robinson reignited the firestorm with his report of Miami discussing a trade with Houston, it’s been hard to ignore. Flores directly addressed this issue on Tuesday.

“I think there’s always rumors. There’s always speculation.” He said Tuesday. “There’s always some form of distractions and I think as a team we’ve got to block that stuff out and play. I thought they did that yesterday and I think that’s something that all players deal with in the National Football League. There’s always something going on. There’s always something that – some form of speculation or controversy and we just block it out, ignore it and move on.”

But the speculation continued, and it even reached a point where Flores felt compelled to make a statement to the entire team.

A statement that Flores would prefer remains in-house.

“You guys know this, I don’t really get into conversations I have with the team, players.” Flores said on Wednesday. “Those conversations are private. Like I’ve said before, I think it’s just common courtesy to keep those conversations between myself and the player or the team. I will say that Tua is our quarterback, I think he’s had a good training camp, I think he’s made a lot of progress. I think he’s made a lot of improvement and we’re pleased with where he is. He’s going through his preparations for New England the way he should be, and that’s where we are as a team.”


Now that should have been enough. He said Tua Tagovailoa is the starting quarterback. But speculation continued, because Flores still hadn’t outright said that Miami was not interested in Deshaun Watson. So again the question was asked. Is Tua Tagovailoa the starter? And again, Flores repeated himself. This time though, the frustration came through.

“I don’t know if I can be more clear. I don’t know how many times – I don’t know how much more clear I can be here.” Flores said. “Tua is the starter. Do I need to say it again? I will.”

Later that same day, Tua Tagovailoa added his own comments. He made it clear he appreciated his coach coming up to bat for him.

“I think it means a lot with it coming from the head coach. The support that I have from him and from the team, it means a lot. But for me, I’m just focused literally on trying to get our guys ready for next week.”

Even if Brian Flores doesn’t say the specific words everyone’s looking for, the message is clear. Not to mention the message has been consistent all offseason long. The answer is always the same. Tua Tagovailoa is the starting quarterback for the Miami Dolphins. Maybe there is some truth to the rumors that owner Stephen Ross wants Deshaun Watson.

On the other hand, several reports came out that Ross won’t force football decisions and has faith in Tagovailoa. That should be the end of the discussion. Brian Flores is as clear as he can possibly be. He isn’t going to make an official statement about Deshaun Watson, no matter how much anyone pries. He’s been consistent about that ever since he arrived in 2019, and he reiterated that philosophy last Sunday after the Bengals game.

“Reports (and) speculation are not things we really get into. Look, I understand the question; but as I’ve said in the past, any conversations we have or don’t have with other clubs are going to be internal. I’ve been pretty steadfast about that – with our players, with other clubs – and that will remain the case.”

Will this satisfy the skeptics who still insist the Miami Dolphins aren’t happy with Tua Tagovailoa? Probably not. But Brian Flores isn’t going to change his personal philosophy just to appease the media or the fan base. However, there is a counterargument. Why would Brian Flores be so evasive about Deshaun Watson, and yet so definitive about Xavien Howard when rumors swirled around him?

Everyone will remember last month when Brian Flores went on record to tell the media to write down they didn’t want to trade Xavien Howard. He couldn’t have been more clear. So why not do the same now for Tua Tagovailoa and Deshaun Watson?

The simple answer: He’s been clear about Tagovailoa. But Watson is not on the team. Therefore, Flores is not commenting. Is it the best strategy? That’s up for debate. Nevertheless, that’s who Brian Flores is, and everyone just needs to accept that.

The easy way to make this all go away, obviously, is for Tagovailoa to become the player he was in college. All preseason signs point to that being the case this season. If Miami wins games, if the offense looks good, the Watson talk will vanish into the ether. If he struggles, however, Flores has a lot of repeating himself to look forward to. He’s put down the rumors every which way, but there’s only one thing that will kill them.

As the old saying goes: Winning cures all.

Luis Sung has covered the Miami Dolphins for numerous outlets such as Dolphins Wire for seven years. Follow him on Twitter: @LuisDSung

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Miami Dolphins

Miami Dolphins 2021 Final 53-man roster tracker

The Miami Dolphins have only two days to decide who will be on the final 53-man roster. Head coach Brian Flores has a very difficult job ahead of him, and a very painful one with the discussions he has to have with many young players.

But with all that said, the NFL is still a business. The Miami Dolphins have to decide who will best help the team moving forward. And Five Reasons Sports will be keeping an eye on all the moves Miami makes throughout the next 48 hours. Stay tuned here as the page will be refreshed throughout the day.

Miami Dolphins roster cuts

  • CB Tino Ellis
  • S Nate Holley
  • RB Jordan Scarlett
  • WR Khalil McClain
  • DE Tyshun Render
  • WR Robert Foster
  • C Matt Skura
  • FB Carl Tucker
  • LB Bernardrick McKinney
  • WR Kai Locksley
  • QB Reid Sinnett
  • TE Chris Myarick
  • DE Jonathan Ledbetter
  • CB Javaris Davis
  • CB Cre’Von LeBlanc
  • DE Jason Strowbridge
  • C Cameron Tom
  • RB Patrick Laird
  • G Durval Queiroz Neto (Roster Exception)
  • WR Kirk Merritt
  • WR Malcolm Perry

Miami Dolphins on Injured Reserve

  • OT Larnel Coleman


The very first player to be released is cornerback Tino Ellis, per his agent Dan Saffron.

Ellis is an undrafted free agent out of Maryland that initially signed a 3-year, $2.28 million dollar contract with the New Orleans Saints back in 2020. He was soon placed on waivers with an injury designation. Once he cleared waivers, he was placed on the Saints’ injured reserve list, then signed on with the Miami Dolphins practice squad last October.

Ellis failed to stand out within a stacked Miami secondary, and now he’ll be looking for a new home unless he gets claimed or the Dolphins put him on their practice squad.

The next Dolphins player to be released is former CFL superstar Nate Holley.

Holley was initially an undrafted free agent of the Minnesota Vikings back in 2017, but was released prior to that preseason. In 2018 he decided to join the Indoor Football League, playing with the Nebraska Danger, where he recorded 23 tackles and a forced fumble in two games. After that, Holley had a brief stint with the Los Angeles Rams in training camp. Unfortunately, that also did not work out. So, in 2019, Holley shifted his focus to the Canadian Football League.

Holley was named the league’s Most Outstanding Rookie with the Calgary Stampeders. During the 18 games he played there, he recorded 100 tackles, a sack, and an interception as a linebacker, the same position he played at Kent State.
Nate Holley had some real standout moments during training camp and preseason chasing down defenders. It would not be a surprise if the Dolphins opted to stash him on the practice squad if he clears waivers.

Barry Jackson of the Miami Herald is reporting that the Miami Dolphins have released running back Jordan Scarlett and wide receiver Khalil McClain.

Scarlett was originally drafted in the 5th round of the 2019 NFL draft by the Carolina Panthers, before injuries to his knee and ankle landed him on injured reserve. He spent 2020 with the Detroit Lions on their practice squad, then signed a reserve/future contract with the Dolphins this past January.
In training camp, Scarlett showed a certain amount of agility, but he seemed slow to make his decisions and could never stand out above the likes of Gerrid Doaks, who the Dolphins drafted in the 7th round of the 2021 draft.
If Scarlett makes it to the practice squad, he’s talented enough on special teams that he might be worth putting onto the practice squad.

Khalil McClain is a 6’4″ beast of a wide receiver who went undrafted and signed on with the Jacksonville Jaguars in May 2019. He was cut at the end of training camp, signed on with the Atlanta Falcons, and missed out on the 2020 season with an injury.

Afterwards, McClain signed on with the Chicago Bears this past May, only to be waived again about two months later. McClain has incredible physical traits, but he isn’t particularly quick, which makes him a liability when trying to gain separation. Perhaps McClain should consider a move to tight end, given the way the game is changing. Facing linebackers and safeties would be much better if he wants a long-term NFL career. He’s already tall enough, he just needs to bulk up.

The Miami Dolphins have now opted to part ways with defensive end Tyshun Render, per the Miami Herald’s Barry Jackson.

Render is a hard-hitting undrafted free agent who was originally signed by the Dolphins back in 2020. He didn’t make the final cut last year either, but he was quickly added to the practice squad after clearing waivers. He was active for Weeks 5 and 14 that season, but did not record any stats.

Tyshun Render should be a priority practice squad addition again this season. He has qualities to his game that make him worth investing in, not the least of which is his strong effort level on every play. Technique is his main weakness, but that can be taught.

Per the Miami Herald’s Barry Jackson, the Miami Dolphins have released speedy wide receiver Robert Foster with an injury settlement. Foster’s release marks the second wide receiver Miami has parted ways with so far, along with Khalil McClain.

The 27-year old Foster is a former Alabama player. During Foster’s final year there, he saw limited action with Tua Tagovailoa as a freshman. While his productivity in college was limited thanks to injuries and a loaded wide receiver room, Foster’s talent is undeniable. His rookie year with the Buffalo Bills as an undrafted free agent is proof positive.

If another team doesn’t pick him up, he can be eligible for the practice squad as a veteran.

In an unfortunate turn of events, the Miami Dolphins have opted to release veteran center Matt Skura. This effectively ends the experiment where Miami hoped he’d return to form and earn the starting job.

Skura infamously suffered from snapping problems with the Baltimore Ravens. This ultimately led to his release and allowed the Dolphins to try and revive his career. Before the snapping issues took hold, Skura was well on his way to becoming one of the league’s top centers. Unfortunately, with the Dolphins, Skura never emerged as the clear starter. Ultimately, the job was given to third-year offensive lineman Michael Deiter.

By releasing Skura, the Dolphins save $1,350,000 in cap space. Miami undoubtedly is watching their budget carefully with all the extensions that players are due next season, not the least of which is tight end Mike Gesicki.

In a stunning move, the Miami Dolphins have released veteran linebacker Benardrick McKinney. The 28-year old McKinney was acquired along with a 7th round pick via trade from the Houston Texans back in March in exchange for Shaq Lawson and a 6th round pick. Now, with this move, neither team has the player they traded for, as Lawson was traded to the New York Jets days earlier.

In releasing McKinney, Miami saves $2,250,000 in cap space. This is after McKinney took a pay cut to become more team friendly. Now he’ll be looking for work just two weeks before the season is set to begin.

The release of McKinney is a big surprise because the veteran’s performance indicated he was on the fast track to being a starter. However, as pointed out by Alfredo Arteaga of the “3 Yards Per Carry” podcast, McKinney’s role is not a coveted one in today’s speed-based NFL. The return of Elandon Roberts made McKinney expendable, as they both do the exact same job and Miami decided that they did not need two of the same player.

Given the track record of Brian Flores, this may not be the first shocker move the Dolphins make. More are sure to come as Miami continues to trim the roster.

The Miami Dolphins have waived rookie FB/TE Carl Tucker.

Tucker went undrafted out of Alabama and was signed on to the Dolphins roster as a free agent. Obviously, Tua Tagovailoa knows him well from his college days. But Tucker failed to make any sort of real impact and didn’t stand out in practice or in the preseason. His best chance to make an NFL roster is to the route that Charles Clay did and try to become a tight end type of player. Fullbacks, unfortunately, are not in high demand in today’s NFL.

Per the Miami Herald’s Barry Jackson, rookie offensive lineman Larnel Coleman will likely be placed on injured reserve as he goes in for knee surgery. This report was confirmed by Armando Salguero and the Sun Sentinel’s David Furones.

Coleman is a promising 7th round draft pick out of Umass Amherst with incredibly long arms that helped be a starter in college at both tackle positions. He had moments in practice this season that caught some positive attention, but his final preseason performance was disappointing at best. With Coleman going in for surgery and needing months to recover, that makes him an instant candidate for the injured reserve list, which means Miami will technically get to stash him for free until next season. That also saves at least one player from having to be outright cut.

Another wide receiver has been cut from the all-too loaded list, as the Miami Dolphins waived Kai Locksley.

Locksley was a QB at UTEP and converted to wide receiver, which created some interesting possibilities similarly to the way Malcolm Perry does. However, as a wide receiver, Locksley’s chances of making the team were painfully slim. If he clears waivers, he could be brought back to the practice squad.

The unfortunate but expected end of Reid Sinnett as a Miami Dolphins QB has finally come to an end.

Sinnett caught the attention and the hearts of Dolphins fans everywhere this past Sunday. During the final preseason game of 2021, Sinnett completed 22 out of 33 passes for 343 yards, two touchdowns and an interception.

The second touchdown of the day he threw came on a Hail Mary pass in the final minutes of the game. It was tight end Chris Myarick who leaped up and came down with it in the endzone to put Miami on top, erasing the excitement of the super serious Bengals fans who desperately wanted them to win.

Naturally, Sinnett is wanted back on the practice squad. After his final performance, it’s going to be interesting to see if he clears waivers.

Tight end Chris Myarick has once again not made the final 53-man roster, and will likely land on the practice squad for another season with the Miami Dolphins.

Chris Myarick has been on and off the Dolphins roster for the past few seasons now, always showing solid skill but never doing enough to stand out above his teammates. His most notable moment in his career is making the Hail Mary catch in the endzone in the preseason from Reid Sinnett. If nothing else, he’s always a solid emergency option for Miami if the worst comes to pass. Expect to see him return to the practice squad.

Dolphins defensive end Jonathan Ledbetter has been waived per the Miami Herald’s Barry Jackson.

Ledbetter signed with the Dolphins as an undrafted free agent back in 2019, and has only played in one game mostly due to injuries to other players. In that game against the Ravens, he recorded half a sack and four tackles before going onto injured reserve.

The Dolphins have waived cornerbacks Javaris Davis and Cre’Von LeBlanc, shrinking down the already loaded secondary.

Davis is actually the cousin of former Dolphins cornerback Vontae Davis. While he hasn’t showed superstar potential like his cousin, Javaris Davis has shown enough that Miami wants him back on the practice squad. Ironically enough, Davis was teammates with first round pick Noah Igbinoghene at Auburn, and has much more experience than him at playing cornerback.

LeBlanc, on the other hand, has NFL experience and has been around the league. He originally went undrafted in 2016 and was signed by the Patriots, which means he has a connection to head coach Brian Flores. He was waived with an injury designation that same year, but was claimed by the Chicago Bears, where he made his first career interception off of Matthew Stafford and returned it for a touchdown.

LeBlanc spent a stint with the Eagles and started showing his full potential there, but injuries have derailed his career. He signed with the Dolphins as a free agent earlier during training camp, but ultimately didn’t impress anyone.

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Durval Queiroz Neto

Durval Queiroz Neto may soon hold key to Dolphins OL stability

It’s been a long time coming, but Brazilian superstar Durval Queiroz Neto is finally starting to show signs that he’s ready for the NFL level.

“The credit goes to Durval.” Head coach Brian Flores said on Tuesday. “I think he’s done a great job of training, nutrition, all the things you need to do to give yourself an opportunity or give yourself a chance. He’s gotten some opportunities in these preseason games and done a good job. We’ll see. I think he’s eager to play. He’s as competitive as anyone on this team. He’s eager to learn and we’ll just keep working with him. If we feel like he can help us in regular season games, we’ll make that decision.”

Naturally, when the time came to trim down to 53 players, Durval Queiroz Neto did not make the roster. Miami still has one more year through the International Player Pathway Program to have a roster exception for him. But just being able to play means a lot to Neto. He’s played in the preseason, but what he wants more than anything is to suit up in the regular season.

“This is everything I want since I came here.” Neto said last month. “Every day I practice, practice and practice. For the last two years, I’ve been watching all of my teammates on the weekends go for the game and I have to stay. Every week has made me more hungry for that. I want that. I want to be in a game. Nothing is more important for me than being in a game to help my team.”

If nothing else, Durval Queiroz Neto serves as a perfect example of what can happen when an athlete is given time to learn, develop, and grow into the role he’s being groomed for. Throughout the preseason, Neto showed an amazing level of strength and explosiveness as a blocker.



Considering where he came from, this is no small feat. This is the Miami Dolphins coaching staff tutoring him from the ground up. Neto comes from a background as a judo champion. Much has been said about how that’s helped his footwork and hand placement. But Neto came to Miami as a defensive lineman. It’s what he always wanted to do. So when he got the news he was being moved, he was shocked.

“When I first came here, they had a coach, Dave DeGuglielmo, the o-line coach.” Neto said. “He was watching my practice every day and saying, ‘hey ‘Q,’ we have a white jersey ready for you. You need to make that move.’ I’d say ‘coach, I was born to play d-line.’ When they signed him to be the main o-line coach, he asked for me and ‘Coach Flo’ (Brian Flores) talked with me and I decided to make the move. From there, they spent a lot of time and patience teaching me everything I know right now as an o-lineman.”


His hard work and dedication to his craft have made him a fan favorite player. It’s also earned him the respect of his teammates, including veteran lineman Jesse Davis, who’s watched him from the very beginning.

“I think ‘Q,’ from the day he’s got here from switching from defensive line to offensive line, he’s improved greatly.” Davis said last month. “He’s done everything the coaches asked him to do and he’s still trying to do everything he can. I think he’s done a really good job with it.”

Durval Queiroz Neto is all but dominating the competition he’s facing at this stage. Perhaps with one last year of training, Neto will be able to not only make the 53-man roster, but compete for a starting position as well. That would finally give Miami some level of stability on the offensive line.

May patience prevail.

Luis Sung has covered the Miami Dolphins for numerous outlets such as Dolphins Wire for seven years. Follow him on Twitter: @LuisDSung

Everything Tradeshows is a one-stop-shop for trade show exhibit rentals and custom exhibit display purchase solutions to companies of all sizes.

Visit them at everythingtradeshows.com or call 954-791-8882


Thrive Fantasy takes away the hours of research required to make the most out of your fantasy sports experience. Thrive’s featured $100K guaranteed contest is only $20 to enter, and the first-place winner takes $20K.

Go to https://www.thrivefantasy.com/?promo=5Fins and use the promo code “5Fins” to match up to $100 on your first deposit when you sign up, and take advantage of your Dolphins knowledge with their special Dolphins-based contest to get started.

Miami Dolphins

Preseason Week 3 – Miami Dolphins at Cincinnati Bengals: 5 players to watch

The end is near. Preseason is nearly over, and so is the tenure of some players on the Miami Dolphins roster bubble. Sunday against the Cincinnati Bengals, many of these players are getting one last chance to shine and prove they’re worth keeping on the team. Whether that’s with the Dolphins, or another team, remains to be seen.

But regardless, the game still has to be played. Amidst the dramatic rumors once again surfacing of a trade for Texans QB Deshaun Watson, and the return of linebacker Vince Biegel to the injured reserve list, here are the top five players to watch on Sunday.

1. Shaquem Griffin – LB

Perhaps no one has more to gain in this final preseason game than Shaquem Griffin. For what his role on the team is, Griffin has a lot of competition. But now that Vince Biegel is back on IR, Griffin’s chances of making the final roster have increased drastically. Like Biegel, Griffin’s best attributes are speed and raw effort. He can be useful as an extra blitzer on passing downs, and he’ll get plenty of action on special teams.

Griffin still has a lot to overcome, however. The linebacker corps is loaded with talent, and it’s unlikely the Dolphins keep a surplus of linebackers just to keep Griffin. He’ll have to put on a drastic performance if he really wants to stick in Miami.

There is some extra hope, however. With the practice squad retaining last season’s COVID-19 rules, the Dolphins can retain six players on their squad with more than two accrued seasons of NFL experience. So if no one else decides to sign him, Griffin can be stashed there. If he does well enough, some other team may add him to their roster. If not, it isn’t hard to speculate Griffin will be a top priority addition.

2. Jason Strowbridge – DE

While Jason Strowbridge is likely to be another quick candidate for the practice squad if he’s waived, he would like to make the final 53-man roster. Problem is, Strowbridge hasn’t done much to really stand out above the rest of his teammates.

He does have one thing going for him, however. Unlike Jonathan Ledbetter and Tyshun Render, his main competitors at defensive end, Strowbridge was actually drafted by the Dolphins. Miami’s front office thought so highly of him, they drafted him in the 5th round of the 2020 NFL draft. Both Render and Ledbetter were undrafted free agents. Teams have a tendency to give a certain amount of bias towards players they invested assets into.

Of course, head coach Brian Flores has never been shy about moving on from players, even higher profile ones. If Render or Ledbetter flash more than Strowbridge does in this last game, they may get the nod over him.

3. Greg Mancz – OL

Once the Miami Dolphins traded for Greg Mancz, the competition got that much tighter for everyone else. More than likely, the veteran Mancz will be viewed as a center, which does not bode well for the likes of Matt Skura, who hasn’t lived up to his lofty expectations. Skura hasn’t even managed to beat out Michael Deiter for the starting center position. Granted, Deiter has been decent for the most part, but certainly not dominant.

So where does this leave Mancz? Reports out of Baltimore indicate that Mancz would not have made the 53-man roster for the Ravens. But apparently GM Chris Grier thinks highly enough of Mancz that he didn’t want to risk another team picking him up first. Mancz’s history with co-offensive coordinator George Godsey from his Houston Texans tenure doubtlessly has something to do with it as well.

Mancz can play at multiple positions on the offensive line, so as a depth move this makes sense. The reason for watching him is not to see if he makes the roster or not. It’s to see if the Dolphins can get something out of him the Ravens weren’t, because many Ravens fans are calling their GM a genius for making this move.

Losing trades isn’t something Chris Grier is known for, but it’s not unheard of either. A strong performance from Mancz on Sunday will alleviate some of the concerns.


4. Patrick Laird – RB

This slot could have gone to either Laird or rookie Gerrid Doaks. This time the dubious honor goes to Laird simply because his effort hasn’t been enough for the eye test this year. Doaks isn’t a superstar by any means, but he has flashed enough to garner attention. And with the top three spots almost certainly going to Myles Gaskin, Salvon Ahmed and Malcolm Brown, that leaves maybe only one slot for another running back. Even Laird himself has nothing but good things to say about the 7th round pick.

“I think he’s done a really good job of transitioning into the NFL.” Laird said on Friday. “I think you guys have seen the clips. He runs hard. Gerrid is a good running back.”

Of course it’s unlikely that Laird would say anything else. He’s been nothing but the model teammate since arriving in Miami. However, he and Doaks will be having quite a battle for that final roster spot. If Laird gets cut, Miami would need to sacrifice one of their veteran practice squad spots to retain him. If Doaks is waived, he’ll need to get through waivers before the practice squad is even a possibility. That makes his situation much riskier.

Laird has always gotten by with his sheer effort and determination. But his physical ability is nothing to write home about. If Laird wants to be the team’s fourth running back, he’ll need to outplay Doaks, and by a rather significant margin. If he doesn’t, he’ll probably be on the outside looking in.

5. Malcolm Perry – WR

The former Navy superstar was really hyped up for his versatility when he was drafted in the 7th round last season. Unfortunately, none of the fantasies have become reality as of yet. No wildcat craziness, no surprise passes, no shifty running of the football. The Miami Dolphins have treated Malcolm Perry as just another normal cog in the machine. One could argue they’re saving his talents for an extreme emergency, but it’s hard to justify a roster spot for a gimmick.

With Lynn Bowden Jr. on IR for the season, Perry is the default gadget player. His skillset offers options that his biggest competition, Kirk Merritt does not. Perry can actually play running back and even quarterback if an extreme emergency happened. But Merritt is a more accomplished wide receiver as of this moment, so it boils down to what do the Miami Dolphins think they need more?

Even without Merritt, Perry will have to fight for his spot. His best chance to make the roster at this point is the unexpected departure of either Jakeem Grant or Preston Williams, two more established players who have rumors swirling around them whether Miami will continue to invest in them. Perry showing up and making plays against the Bengals will make the decision much more difficult for Brian Flores.

Luis Sung has covered the Miami Dolphins for numerous outlets such as Dolphins Wire for seven years. Follow him on Twitter: @LuisDSung

Everything Tradeshows is a one-stop-shop for trade show exhibit rentals and custom exhibit display purchase solutions to companies of all sizes.

Visit them at everythingtradeshows.com or call 954-791-8882


Thrive Fantasy takes away the hours of research required to make the most out of your fantasy sports experience. Thrive’s featured $100K guaranteed contest is only $20 to enter, and the first-place winner takes $20K.

Go to https://www.thrivefantasy.com/?promo=5Fins and use the promo code “5Fins” to match up to $100 on your first deposit when you sign up, and take advantage of your Dolphins knowledge with their special Dolphins-based contest to get started.


Dolphins players on roster bubble getting last chance Sunday

The end of training camp and preseason is always laden with mixed feelings. On the one hand, it’s the mark of real football fast approaching. Games will soon matter as teams fight for the coveted Vince Lombardi Trophy. But on the other hand, it also marks the end of the road for many players just trying to prove they’re worthy to make the team. The Miami Dolphins are no exception to this.

With the level of depth the Miami Dolphins are boasting this season, many deserving players are going to have their hopes dashed. It’s never fun to watch these players go, but the NFL is a business first and foremost. On Sunday, the players on the roster bubble are going to get their last chance to show the Miami Dolphins – or another team watching – just what they have to offer.

“There’s always excitement when you get to go out and play.” Quarterback Reid Sinnett said on Friday. “So these guys that aren’t sure through the first couple preseason games if they’re going to play; now they know they’re going to get an opportunity to go out and showcase what they’ve improved upon and that’s always a challenge as a quarterback to make sure that we’re focused on what we’re trying to do. There’s always excitement when you get to go out and play. You feel the excitement at practice even every day when guys are getting a chance to play the game they love.”

One player who always seems to be on the roster bubble is running back Patrick Laird. Head coach Brian Flores always says that it takes no talent. Laird is the embodiment of that philosophy. He doesn’t have elite speed, agility, strength or size. But he does have determination and drive that always stands out. That’s how he manages to make the roster each year. Thanks to that, he was lucky enough to be the one who caught QB Tua Tagovailoa’s first ever NFL pass. But that doesn’t matter in the long run. Laird is fighting for a spot on the roster, this year is tougher than ever.

“It’s just what I’ve been used to.” Laird said on Friday. “I was a walk-on in college, kind of a very similar situation as an undrafted guy. I knew since I tried out for the NFL that I was probably going to have to fight for a spot every year and that’s the way I like it. It’s challenging but it’s one of the best job interviews you can be a part of. It’s a long job interview process; but I like it, I enjoy it and I’m still loving football. I’m just going to focus on playing the best football I can and hopefully help the Dolphins win this year.”

Sunday’s preseason game against the Cincinnati Bengals is crucial for Laird and everyone else on the bubble. Head coach Brian Flores said on Tuesday that, in reality, there are only about two or three open spots available on the roster. That means the coaches have already chosen most of the team. For those open spots? Flores had very direct advice.

“Work hard. Keep improving.” He said. “Take advantage of your opportunities. I mentioned that to our team many times. In life, it’s about taking advantage of your opportunities. Whether it’s football or business or really anything that you’re working towards, if you get an opportunity, you want to take advantage of it. For those guys who are two, three spots that are available, they’ll have some opportunities to practice, they’ll have opportunities in the game. If they play well, then they give themselves the best opportunity to maker the team and if they don’t, then they don’t give themselves the best chance.”

One of those players under a lot of pressure to perform is defensive back Trill Williams, who is an undrafted free agent out of Syracuse. Williams originally signed with the New Orleans Saints. Unfortunately, that didn’t last long.


“That process was crazy because I get there and they put me on waivers and I was only there for three days at the time.” Williams said on Friday. “Then that Monday, I’m here. God works in mysterious ways and he put me where I’m supposed to be and I’m supposed to be here. I can only control what I can control. I’m just blessed to be here.”

Williams is a very intriguing prospect. He was solid all throughout college. Now with the Dolphins in training camp, he’s regularly made plays, including very recently intercepting a Jacoby Brissett pass that got all his teammates excited. So what does he think the coaches want to see from him?

“Honestly, I think they just want to see me go out there and play football how I’ve been doing and what they saw on film from me coming out of college.” Williams said. “Like I said, I can only play football and control what I can control. I’m going to go out there and give it everything I’ve got every time I go out there.”

Finally, there’s linebacker Shaquem Griffin. Everyone knows his story. He was born with amniotic band syndrome. His left hand didn’t develop properly and was amputated when he was four years old. But he refused to let that stop him. Griffin earned All-American honors at UCF, and was drafted in the 5th round of the 2018 NFL draft. He is the only player with one hand to ever be drafted.

Griffin is already a fan favorite at practice. He’s exciting to watch on the field and makes plays when given the chance. However, it hasn’t been perfect. He’s had his moments where he loses matchups as well. Naturally, this won’t be the first time Griffin faces adversity. He intends to rise to the challenge on Sunday and whatever happens after, he’ll cross that bridge when he gets to it.

“This has definitely been my best camp since I’ve been in the league.” Griffin said Friday to local media. “So as far as that, no matter what happens, no matter what’s the outcome of the situation or a roster (spot), I know I’ll be in a good position because I handled my business as far as making sure I learned the plays, making sure I’m a guy who has energy, making sure that I’m making plays, making sure that I’m running around. The only thing I can do is control the controllables and when the decision is made, I’ll be happy with any decision, there on the team or not.”

Brian Flores clearly has a difficult job ahead of him. There’s so much talent to choose from, it’s like splitting hairs. Normally, preseason is considered boring, especially at the end. This year is going to be very different. There’s simply too much competition to just turn a blind eye.

Luis Sung has covered the Miami Dolphins for numerous outlets such as Dolphins Wire for seven years. Follow him on Twitter: @LuisDSung

Everything Tradeshows is a one-stop-shop for trade show exhibit rentals and custom exhibit display purchase solutions to companies of all sizes.

Visit them at everythingtradeshows.com or call 954-791-8882


Thrive Fantasy takes away the hours of research required to make the most out of your fantasy sports experience. Thrive’s featured $100K guaranteed contest is only $20 to enter, and the first-place winner takes $20K.

Go to https://www.thrivefantasy.com/?promo=5Fins and use the promo code “5Fins” to match up to $100 on your first deposit when you sign up, and take advantage of your Dolphins knowledge with their special Dolphins-based contest to get started.