Head Coach Joe Philbin and offensive coordinator Mike Sherman were committed to upgrading the passing game and surrounding Tannehill with more weapons, as was General Manager Jeff Ireland. Wallace, Gibson and Keller add speed, reliability and multiple threats all over the field that will challenge opposing defensive coordinators.
In addition to those free agents, the return of
BREAKING DOWN DOLPHINS WIDE RECEIVERS/TIGHT ENDS
• Brandon Gibson WR (6-0, 205; 51 REC; 691 YDS) — Gibson can line up anywhere in Sherman’s system. When he played against Miami with the St. Louis Rams last October, Gibson made a highlight-reel catch to keep a late drive alive and his veteran savvy and reliability should only help Tannehill and a young offense.
• Mike Wallace WR (6-0, 199; 64 REC; 836 YDS) — Nobody made a bigger splash this offseason than Wallace when he left the Pittsburgh Steelers and signed with Miami on the first day of free agency. His sprinter’s speed is well documented and he gives the Dolphins the deep threat they have been missing, while his immediate connection with Tannehill should encourage fans and teammates alike.
• Brian Hartline WR (6-2, 199; 74 REC; 1,083 YDS) — Everything came together for the Canton, Ohio native last season and in the offseason and he has positioned himself to be a go-to receiver for second-year quarterback Ryan Tannehill. The Dolphins rewarded Hartline with a rich new contract in March and he is prepared to step up as a leader in the room and on the offense.
• Dion Sims TE (6-4, 265; College Totals: 36 REC; 475 YDS) — Sims’ combination of size and speed caught the eye of Ireland and resulted in his being chosen in the fourth round of April’s NFL Draft with the 106th overall pick. He is expected to push last year’s third-round selection,
• Dustin Keller TE (6-2, 255; 28 REC; 317 YDS) — Once a member of the hated rival New York Jets, Keller wants to prove that the ankle injury he suffered last season was an anomaly and that he can be a seam threat and a solid blocker for the Dolphins. He chose Miami in free agency because he likes the direction the team is headed and feels like he is a good fit in Sherman’s offense.
• Michael Egnew TE (6-5, 262; 0 REC; 0 YDS) — There was no hiding the fact that Egnew’s rookie campaign was a challenging one and a frustrating one, but he finally got off the inactive list for the last two games. Sherman was tough on Egnew all season but he and Philbin see the potential in him and are hoping he makes big strides this year.
• Kyle Miller TE (6-5, 262; 0 REC; 0 YDS) —Miller was picked up by the Dolphins on November 20th of last year after being waived by the Indianapolis Colts and brought size and depth to the tight end position. Although he was inactive for the last six games, Miller hopes to make some waves at camp.
There are four other wide receivers looking to crack the 53-man roster or at least be assigned to the practice squad – undrafted rookie free agents