Miami Dolphins Linebacker Free Agent Preview: Focus on Manny Lawson

Michael Heck Correspondent IIJuly 18, 2011

SAN FRANCISCO - NOVEMBER 21:  Micheal Spurlock #81 of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers tries turnover outrun Manny Lawson #99 of the San Francisco 49ers at Candlestick Park on November 21, 2010 in San Francisco, California.  (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)
Ezra Shaw/Getty Images

In 2006, this linebacker was hyped as the next Jason Taylor.

In 2006, Taylor was doing all things majestic for the Miami Dolphins, Manny Lawson has not lived up to those comparisons. He is built like Taylor and even wears the No. 99, he is a great fit for the Miami Dolphins. 

This is someone worth bringing in to compete against at outside linebacker. Can you imagine? Cameron Wake at end and Lawson at linebacker blitzing from the same side or opposite directions or...or....? The options are very creative.

Hopefully, the Miami Dolphins realize this opportunity and take it. 

Lawson has only shown promise. He has had one highlight here and there. Not enough to demand a bloated payday.

He's shown the ability to cover the edge like a good 3-4 outside linebacker should. Having athletes like Wake and Lawson would allow more creative schemes because both can rush the quarterback and zone cover. Lawson would be one more linebacker the opponent would have to consider pre-snap. 

With the seconds ticking down on the NFL lockout, the Dolphins need to consider free agents which have shown enough promise to receive playing time, yet don't demand high pay. I have been vocal about Vince Young, Jerome Harrison, Kevin Burnett, Eric Weddle and now Lawson. 

Lobbying for Lawson is the cherry on top. I have decided to not prognosticate about the offensive line because there is no telling how many former Dallas Cowboys linemen Jeff Ireland and Tony Sparano will bring in...sarcasm folks.

With all of the injuries which occurred last season, it is difficult to tell who will play where. So, I'm leaving that puzzle alone. 

From a fan perspective, this coaching staff has built a linebacking crew to ably stop the run: Channing Crowder, Koa Misi, Ikaika Alama-Francis and Karlos Dansby. While everyone knows that Wake will rush the QB, he is the primary source of the Dolphins' sack attack.

The Dolphins are banking that Misi will blossom. Lawson would be a great addition, he would bring great depth or even challenge the starters if he could do one thing: bring speed and athleticism to the outside. 

My hope is that my next article would declare the end of this silly lockout. My next hope is that Lawson is the next member of the Miami Dolphins. Do you agree?