The Phinsider’s annual 90-in-90 series is back today with another in-depth look at the players who are currently vying to make the Miami Dolphins’ 53-man roster. This series of articles takes a look at each individual on the roster, breaking down how they performed in 2017, why they could progress or regress in 2018, and the odds that the player makes the team when the regular season arrives.
This year, we have already finished the reviews for Wide Receiver Leonte Carroo, punter Matt Haack, safety T.J. McDonald, running back Buddy Howell, wide receiver DeVante Parker, Defensive end William Hayes, wide receiver Isaiah Ford, safety/cornerback Walt Aikens, defensive end Claudy Mathieu, linebacker Kiko Alonso, cornerback Xavien Howard, long snapper Lucas Gravelle, wide receiver Danny Amendola, tight end A.J. Derby, running back Frank Gore, defensive tackle Gabe Wright, wide receiver Kenny Stills, cornerback Tony Lippett, kicker Jason Sanders, kicker Greg Joseph, left tackle Laremy Tunsil, tight end Mike Gesicki, linebacker Raekwon McMillan, running back Kalen Ballage, wide receiver Jakeem Grant, tight end Durham Smythe, quarterback David Fales, wide receiver Albert Wilson, defensive tackle Akeem Spence, linebacker Chase Allen, defensive end Cameron Wake, running back Senorise Perry, and tight end MarQueis Gray, offensive lineman Ted Larsen, defensive end Andre Branch, running back Kenyan Drake, defensive end Quincy Redmon, quarterback Bryce Petty, wide receiver Francis Owusu, defensive end Jonathan Woodard, defensive end Charles Harris, center Connor Hilland, guard Jesse Davis, safety Reshad Jones, defensive tackle Jordan Phillips, and guard Isaac Asiata. Today, we take a look at defensive end Robert Quinn.
Quinn had been a member of the Rams since 2011 before being traded to the Dolphins this offseason. He had an up-and-down career in St. Louis/Los Angeles due to injuries and being played out of his natural position, but was an All Pro selection in 2013, when he led the league in sacks with 19. Last year, while played as an outside linebacker (Quinn is naturally a defensive end) the veteran defender accumulated 32 tackles, 8.5 sacks, two forced fumbles, and one pass defended over 15 games played (14 starts).
Why he might progress
As mentioned above, Quinn has struggled with injuries throughout his career, yet he played through a nearly full season of games last season and had decent production, showing that he still has plenty left in the tank at just 28-years old. Another full and healthy season would only aid in his current upswing since his rocky 2015 and 2016 campaigns.
I also noted that Quinn was forced to play out of position at outside linebacker in Los Angeles because defensive coordinator Wade Phillips incorporates a 3-4 scheme (three defensive linemen and four linebackers) in his defense. However, the Dolphins utilize a 4-3 scheme, which means Quinn will be able to transition back to his natural position at defensive end. This should help him get back to full form alongside Cameron Wake. It also helps that Wake prefers to play on the left side of the line, while Quinn prefers the right.
Why he might regress
Injuries. When a player has an extensive injury history as Quinn does, it’s impossible to ignore the danger of continuing health issues. As noted, Quinn played 15 games last season, and while the obvious hope is that he continues to stay healthy, any less would have to be considered regression.
The fact that Miami is so deep at the defensive end position with contributors in Wake, Andre Branch, Charles Harris, and William Hayes also makes it possible that Quinn could be forced into a rotation that hampers his ability to produce huge numbers.
Chances of making the 53-man roster
The current assumption is that Miami’s front office traded for Quinn with the intention of him being a week 1 starter, so his chances of making the team are virtually 100%. While Quinn does have an expensive contract, expect the team to hold onto him after giving up valuable draft picks this offseason.