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News » Miami Dolphins Inside Slant 2009-03-17

Miami Dolphins Inside Slant 2009-03-17

Miami Dolphins Inside Slant 2009-03-17
The Dolphins turned the corner last season largely in part to their veteran cornerbacks Will Allen and Andre' Goodman.

With Goodman allowed to find greener pastures in Denver, and Allen soon to be 31 and in the final year of his contract, the only cornerback on the roster with experience is an undersized Nate Jones and the much-maligned Jason Allen, the overall 16th pick in a Nick Saban draft in 2006.

That was until Thursday when the Dolphins signed Cardinals free agent cornerback Eric Green to a multi-year deal. Green, who turns 27 next week, is expected to compete with Jason Allen for Goodman's spot. He started nine of 13 games last year with 39 tackles and an interception before a sore knee and the emergence of rookie cornerback Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie kept him out of Arizona's Super Bowl run

The Dolphins may still add Panthers recently released veteran corner Ken Lucas, however, his price tag will surely be in another stratosphere compared to Green's.

Despite the addition of Green, vice president of football operations Bill Parcells, general manager Jeff Ireland and coach Tony Sparano will surely be looking for cornerback bargains in next month's draft. Parcells has had some success in drafting cornerbacks such as Ty Law, Terence Newman and Lawyer Malloy in the first or second rounds, so it's quite possible he'll use one of his two second-round picks on a corner while also bolstering the pass rush with a hybrid outside linebacker.

ESPN draft analyst Mel Kiper said recently that, "there isn't one shutdown cornerback available this year. And after watching the sub-par 40 times run by the defensive backs at the combine workouts at this position, it isn't really as strong or as deep as originally anticipated.''

Clearly, Ohio State's Malcolm Jenkins will be long gone before Miami's 25th pick and Wake Forest's Alphonso Smith is too small at 5-9. UConn's Darius Butler didn't have a pick his senior season but may become a two-way player at defensive back and receiver. Apparently, the Dolphins have a crush on Utah's 6-2, 215-pound Sean Smith, but he could be a two-year project and not be ready to step in immediately. Vandy's D.J. Moore is a playmaker with 12 picks his last two season.

While Green provides some stability in the back end, in order for the Dolphins to build on last year's successful turnaround, a cornerstone cornerback is still needed.

Author:Fox Sports
Author's Website:http://www.foxsports.com
Added: March 17, 2009

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Joey Thomas Name: Joey Thomas
Position: CB
Age: 27
Experience: 3 years
College: Montana State
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