The circumstances may not fit exactly, but the lesson fits like your favorite pair of jeans. As the Miami Dolphins finish off their round of cuts and waiver claims in order to set the 53-man roster for the 2013 NFL season, Cameron Wake serves as a tale of both caution and hope.
Wake came out of Penn State looking to be drafted in the 2005 NFL draft after an underwhelming and disappointing career in the college ranks. Though he was an impressive athlete who set the NFL combine record for highest vertical jump, he went undrafted. The New York Giants signed him and invited him to participate in minicamps and offseason training activities. He was cut before he even made it to training camp.
The players I will discuss in this piece made it quite a bit further than Wake did back in 2005. Five of these players made it all the way to final cuts before being dealt the kind of blow that Wake was forced to overcome en route to becoming one of the NFL's most dominant players. For them, Wake serves as a tale of hope.
On the other hand, team executives must look at Cameron Wake as a source of caution, knowing that they may well have cut five of the next Cameron Wakes in favor of five players whose careers are destined to fizzle into obscurity.
With that in mind, let's take a look at the five biggest surprises and snubs from the Dolphins' final cuts.