Wilfredo Lee/Associated Press
CB Brent Grimes, CB Cortland Finnegan, CB Jamar Taylor, CB Will Davis, CB Sammy Seamster, S Walt Aikens, S Reshad Jones (suspended), S Louis Delmas, S Jimmy Wilson, S Brandian Ross, S Michael Thomas
Despite the ire of some fans at the time of his signing, veteran cornerback Cortland Finnegan has looked solid in his live-game action so far. He’s allowed just four receptions and a quarterback rating of 77.1, which is a good mark for a starting cornerback.
His teammate Brent Grimes has drawn extremely difficult matchups in Dez Bryant, Vincent Jackson, Julio Jones and Roddy White. But the regular season won’t be as brutal, and he’s expected to continue his 2013 dominance. He’s one of the top five cornerbacks in the league today.
The young cornerbacks Jamar Taylor and Will Davis have had to grow up quickly after the Dolphins didn’t bring in any competition over the offseason. Taylor has looked solid as a slot and boundary cornerback, showing good footwork and positioning on almost every target. He gave up one touchdown against the Cowboys, but that was a perfectly placed pass and great catch. Sometimes the defender just cannot stop great plays.
Will Davis had a very impressive preseason, showing much improved ball awareness and discipline. He needs to continue his growth to become more reliable, as he can still be caught with his feet out of control in coverage.
The safety position has been disappointing so far. Reshad Jones’ suspension forced the Dolphins to move Jimmy Wilson from slot cornerback to free safety, and he’s been caught out of position too often throughout the preseason. His eye discipline and anticipation haven’t been developed full-time for safety, so it’s likely Louis Delmas moves back to the high safety role when Jones returns.
Delmas has also played poorly, often missing on tackles and giving up too many yards after the catch. He has always been a high-risk, high-reward player, so Miami knew they were rolling the dice on him, but Delmas needs to find a balance and make the fundamental plays first.
All in all, the safety group has the talent to become a force for offenses to play against, but they could also be the cause of coverage breakdowns. That uncertainty in the secondary is a major concern entering the season.