In the weeks leading up to the start of training camps across the NFL, Miami Dolphins running back Lamar Miller was often mentioned as a potential breakout player, and it was assumed that he'd be the bell-cow back in South Beach in 2013.
Well, through three preseason games, Miller has found himself locked in a battle for the starting job with Daniel Thomas, with Dolphins offensive coordinator Mike Sherman calling the competition "neck and neck."
Miller hasn't helped himself with lackluster performances in game action. He lost a fumble against Dallas in the Hall of Fame game and has been nondescript in the two games that followed. Thomas, meanwhile, has looked sharp, particularly in last weekend's 24-17 loss against Houston, carrying four times for 25 yards.
Thomas is a former second-round pick (2011) who has yet to live up to expectations, and earlier in the offseason, it was clear that the Dolphins wanted Miller to be "The Guy." Clearly meaning that it's still Miller's job to lose.
If Miller has a strong effort in Saturday night's game against Tampa Bay, he should lock the starting job up. If not, Thomas could find himself as the lead runner when Miami opens the regular season in Cleveland.