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Laremy Tunsil

According to Vegas, losing Tunsil and Stills did not hurt the Miami Dolphins

Tunsil and Stills are gone and some Miami Dolphins fans can’t still believe it.

The Dolphins have continued to be the model of mediocrity for the last 20 years.

They’ve struggled to find success in the playoffs. Yet, have refused to bottom out.

The Dolphins are embracing the tank under first-year coach Brian Flores in 2019. As a result, Vegas had Miami winning 4.5 games in the 2019 season. BetOnline still had a line of 4.5  after trading away left tackle Laremy Tunsil and wide receiver Kenny Stills.

Robert Duff, on sportsbettingdime.com dove into how this move may impact the Dolphins here.

Duff, whom taught a course on the history of sports at Elder College, highlighted how a mutiny could develop in Miami’s locker room after trading away their cornerstone left tackle. According to Duff, what doesn’t help Miami’s situation is that Brian Flores is starting to look as “cold-hearted” as his previous boss, Bill Belichick.

Flores is quickly losing the faith of a team. Like every team, Miami put plenty of work in the offseason, just to fall to Baltimore by 49 points on opening day.

While the first-year coach has preached that his team is going to be competitive, it isn’t looking that way early in the season. Miami’s struggles are at a point in which players don’t want to suit up for a team that will be dominated on a week-by-week basis.

Per Mike Florio, of ProFootballTalk, members of the Miami Dolphins are reaching out to their agents in hopes to get traded from the team. This could potentially make an already diminished roster even weaker.

Early mutiny in Miami

Things will get worse in Miami before they get better. The Dolphins have only won four-or-less games just twice since 1970. The 2019 roster is looking as bad as the 1-15 team from 2007.

Vegas doesn’t see the Dolphins getting any worse, especially after losing Stills and Tunsil. Keep in mind, they are most certainly not getting any better.

The 4.5 line is looking like a pretty appealing line to bet the under on. Especially for a team that is clearly tanking with their sights on Tua Tagovailoa.

Vincent Taylor Release

Dolphins release DT Vincent Taylor

No one is safe when it comes to the 2019 Miami Dolphins roster. After trading Laremy Tunsil, Kenny Stills and Kiko Alonso, then releasing longtime long snapper John Denney, Miami’s purge continues with the release of Vincent Taylor.

With that release, only 22 players who were on the 2018 squad remain, and it’s possible more moves are on the way.

What makes this move so surprising is that Taylor was clearly productive during his two season tenure.

In his 21 games, he made 45 tackles, hit the QB three times, made four tackles for a loss, two sacks, and his real claim to fame is blocking field goals. He has a strange knack for that, but he ended 2018 on injured reserve with a foot injury. Perhaps that has something to do with his lack of production in preseason.

New Face

To replace the 25-year old, the Dolphins signed veteran nose tackle John Jenkins, who spent his first four seasons with the Saints after being drafted in the third round of the 2013 NFL draft. He was a top performer at the combine that year, and unlike Taylor, the 30-year old Jenkins fits a niche role that’s necessary for Miami’s 3-4 defensive alignment.

Since being released by New Orleans in 2016, Jenkins has spent time with a different team each following year. In 2016, he played with the Seattle Seahawks. The next year was spent with the Bears, and in 2018 he was a member of the New York Giants. He played seven games for the Giants, and contributed almost nothing. No tackles, no sacks. To be fair, however, nose tackles aren’t meant to put up stats. They’re meant to clear the way for other defenders. If he can do that, then his contribution will be on tape, not on a stat sheet.

So is this the end of Vincent Taylor with the Dolphins? Not necessarily. Should he clear waivers, Taylor is still technically eligible for Miami’s practice squad. He could be brought back that way. But if not, some team somewhere is going to get real bang for their buck. Taylor isn’t the most well-conditioned player, but when he’s on the football field, he makes things happen.

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

Laremy Tunsil

Dolphins send Laremy Tunsil and Kenny Stills to Texans in massive trade

Laremy Tunsil seemed safe. It seemed like he was going to remain a member of the Miami Dolphins. Then the front office pulls the rug out from under everyone. The Houston Texans sent pass rusher Jadeveon Clowney to the Seahawks. That should have been it. But then the Dolphins sent the Texans young star left tackle Laremy Tunsil and wide receiver Kenny Stills. They also added a fourth round pick for 2020.

In return, Miami received a 2020 first round pick, a 2021 first round pick, a 2021 second round pick, cornerback Johnson Bademosi and offensive tackle Julién Davenport. With that, the Dolphins officially topped the massive trade that the Raiders pulled off, sending star defender Khalil Mack to the Bears last season. The compensation for the 25-year old tackle and a solid wide receiver is huge, and GM Chris Grier is undoubtedly satisfied with his work.

But this does mean that now, the offensive line is without its best player. Which means that in 2019, both Ryan Fitzpatrick and Josh Rosen may spend most of the season running for their lives.

The Future

As large as this trade is, it does send a message loud and clear to the fan base and the remaining players in the locker room. 2019 is not intended to win games. In spite of everything head coach Brian Flores is saying, winning is not something Miami expects to do a lot of. Not that they will ever admit it publicly. All attention now needs to be placed on the next two drafts. The Dolphins are in a prime position to earn the first overall pick and have their quarterback of choice. Then with that extra first rounder, there’s no telling what they could do.

But there’s one thing that needs to be said now. Grier has to make sure he hits on these next two drafts. Many are saying that the Dolphins are taking the path the Cleveland Browns took. That path was a long one, and even with all the picks they’ve had over the last several years, only now are they actually a good football team on paper. Most importantly, his next selected quarterback needs to be a superstar.

2019, more than ever, is going to be about development. Miami has a young core on defense. Undoubtedly, they will add more in the coming seasons. It’s the offense that needs a lot of work. Unless Michael Deiter, Shaq Calhoun and Isaiah Prince develop, the Dolphins will need to overhaul the line again. Wide receiver has Jakeem Grant and Preston Williams. There’s no telling whether Albert Wilson will return after 2020. Wide receiver will need investing. And what of Josh Rosen? Will he get a chance to prove himself? Or is this Arizona all over again and he’s merely trade fodder or backup material? 2019 may not provide the answer. 2020 might.

There might even be more draft picks coming for the rebuild, if the Dolphins trade Kiko Alonso as expected. Who knows what will come of that? All that can be done now is to monitor the situation closely.

Prepare for pain before the pleasure. Rebuilding is never a fun process, but if Miami gets it right, then the next several years after the storm could be glorious.

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

Kenny Stills gets death threats, doesn’t back down

Preston Williams, the undrafted free agent that our Chris Kouffman (@CKParrot) told you all about on the day he signed, was the star of the Dolphins’ 34-27 win in their preseason opener.

But that’s not the receiver everyone ran to first in the Dolphins locker room.

That, naturally, was Kenny Stills, after the outspoken community activist tweeted this Wednesday evening about the Dolphins owner Steve Ross.

That tweet went viral, and so did the related story. Ross released his own statement afterwards, but it wasn’t especially well received.

 

Stills wasn’t impressed either, apparently.

Stills addressed the media for roughly 10 minutes, taking every question. He said he did not want to be a distraction, and he had spoken to coach Brian Flores about it.

Flores had his own view on it.

Well, something we need to do more of in a society is not threaten someone’s life for speaking out.

This, unfortunately, wasn’t especially shocking.

Stills has trade value, but he made it clear he doesn’t want to leave the Dolphins. This seems like it may be just a two-day story, but it’s a story that shows how polarized Dolphins fans are politically. For some reason, the view of Stills  as a player is affected by how a fan feels about the president. Even though Stills does more work in the community than just about any active athlete in South Florida, with people of all races.