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With Ajayi’s concussion, would the Dolphins consider signing Tre Mason?

Ari Russell

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(Icon Sportswire)

After a physical practice on Monday that left starting RB Jay Ajayi leaving the field, the depth at running for the Miami Dolphins has been exposed. It’s actually official, Ajayi sustained a concussion and is now required to go through the league’s concussion protocol. this means he may miss several practices.

Right now Damien Williams and Kenyan Drake are next in line on the depth chart. Neither player has come even close to being able to show they would be able to carry the load Ajayi was able to handle. Also with normal NFL running back wear and tear, the team may be in the market to add some depth at that position. Unfortunately there aren’t many options. DeAngelo Williams’ name has been tossed out there, but so far no movement on that front.

There is one player that’s available, who happens to be working out in South Florida right now who seemingly wants to get back into the NFL. That player is Tre Mason.

Tyler Dunne of Bleacher Report was able to track down Mason, who last played for the Rams down in Ft. Lauderdale. Here’s some of what Dunne was able to get:

Mason says he’s available and happy, that any team with doubt should talk to him face to face.

Whenever a team does, it’ll need to answer a different question: Do you believe in Tre Mason?

He holds out his hand, palm up, toward the beach as if presenting it as a gift.

This water. That sun. Those palm trees.

“I came back to paradise,” Mason says, “back to my hometown.”

Football is almost always ripped away from players. Rarely does anyone choose to stay home when practice begins. But that’s precisely what Mason did before last season. The “why” is not simple or straightforward. He’s blisteringly honest about one reason (the Rams) and elusive on others (the off-field trouble).

Before venting, Mason spells it out: “J-O-B.” He knows playing running back in the NFL is work. But he also felt insulted. Betrayed, even. After he rushed for 765 yards and four scores in 12 games as a rookie, the Rams drafted Todd Gurley in 2015, and Mason was marginalized. Coaches, he said, would promise “X” number of carries, and then he’d spend practically all of Sunday standing idly on the sideline. He had three or fewer carries in seven games.

It’s interesting to see how the NFL castigates some players and accepts others for certain transgressions. In Mason’s case it looks like teams feel he’s not stable enough to play. However according to Mason, he hasn’t even been given a chance to tell his side of the story, which seems to carry some level of nuance after reading this story.

With all that said the Dolphins ought to at least invite Mason in for a workout. He has shown that he can be an effective and serviceable running back in this league. He’s certainly has at least equal abilities to the backs currently on the Dolphins’ roster. I’m not quite sure what the downside would be to at least give Mason a look. We will see what happens in the coming days, but one this is clear, the Dolphins need to either decide their current running backs are up to the challenge, or they need to look elsewhere. You can’t depend on just one guy in this day and age to remain healthy all 16 games and produce. Especially for a team like the Dolphins who have serious post season expectations.

Born in the Nation’s Capital, Washington D.C., Ari Russell watched the rise of the 1980’s Miami Hurricanes and knew that he had to be part of the “U” someday. After graduating from Coral Gables, Ari rose through the ranks of the former XM Satellite Radio and then Sirius/XM as college football executive producer. He later spent 2 seasons as the publisher of the website “Beyond U Sports” focusing on major college football/basketball. Ari brings a great perspective on everything Miami, including the Dolphins to F.F.I.

Miami Dolphins

Bama QB Tua Tagovailoa present to start NFL combine

Florida Football Insiders

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John David Mercer-USA TODAY Sports

The NFL Scouting Combine is getting underway in Indianapolis this week and on Monday morning, one of the prized quarterbacks that will be available early in the first round of the draft was there for official measurements and to meet with teams.

Alabama’s Tua Tagovailoa, whose season ended with a fractured hip last November, is on the road to recovery and he was officially measured and also, met with numerous teams that are looking at the possibility of drafting him:

In addition to not only the injured hip, but also a history of high ankle sprain problems, Tagovailoa has got to answer critics on his size. At just 6 – 0 feet there will be concerns about his ability to clearly see downfield through the massive bodies on NFL Sundays.

However, this can be combated by moving him around out of the pocket and that’s something that Alabama was successful at doing over his three years as well.

As we wrote recently, Tagovailoa was injured in Alabama’s 10th game of the season suffering a fractured hip on a sack late in the first half at Mississippi State. He missed the Tide’s final two regular-season games and then, their Citrus Bowl win January 1st, over Michigan

He came to Alabama from Hawaii and the same high school as Marcus Mariota, having thrown for over 8,000 yards which at that time was a Hawaii High School record. And, he had a career of 84 passing and 27 rushing touchdowns in three seasons.

Tua burst onto the scene nationally, when he relieved Jalen Hurts in the second half and overtime of Alabama’s thrilling title game win over Georgia in the 2018 College Football Playoff Championship Game. Tagovailoa threw the game-winning touchdown pass on the first overtime possession, as Alabama celebrated their fifth National Title in nine seasons under Saban.

In his second season at the helm in the 2018 regular season, Tagovailoa was named second-team AP All-American and was a Heisman Trophy finalist, as the Tide reached the National Title game, again, before being beaten soundly by Clemson 12 months ago.

As this junior season unfolded, Tagovailoa was named almost became synonymous with the Dolphins, who started the season horribly at 0 – 7 and the moniker “Tank for Tua” began to gain momentum in South Florida.

Tagovailoa is obviously on the Dolphins list to look at strongly to select in the top five in the draft and currently, Miami is slated to pick fifth.

It is expected that Tagovailoa will work out for teams probably later in March or maybe even, early April at the Tide’s facility in Tuscaloosa, prior to the NFL draft coming to Las Vegas.

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Colorado announced hire of Dolphins assistant Dorrel Sunday

Florida Football Insiders

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Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Former UCLA coach and recently promoted Dolphins assistant Karl Dorrell is headed back to college, as the new head coach of the Colorado Buffaloes.

The school confirmed Dorrell’s hire on Sunday evening with a five-year contract to take over their Big 12 program:

The Buffaloes have been seeking a head coach since there coach Mel Tucker abruptly left to take the Michigan State job earlier this month.

Dorrell came to the dolphins with Brian Flores this past season, as wide receiver coach and earlier last week was promoted to assistant head coach for the upcoming season. Miami’s top receiver, DeVante Parker, blossomed under Dorrell’s tutelage as the year went on. He finished the season with 72 catches for 1,202 yards and nine touchdowns becoming the favorite target of QB Ryan Fitzpatrick.

Dorrel is the latest Dolphins assistant on the move. Flores fired the offensive coordinator Chad O’Shea he brought with him from New England. And, his defensive coordinator Patrick Graham left to take the same job with the Giants.

Dorrell had also been the Dolphins receivers coach, previously from 2008 – 10 and then, their quarterbacks coach in 2011 under the late Tony Sparano.

Colorado’s athletic director Rick George said in a statement Sunday night,

“I am excited that Karl Dorrell has agreed to become our head football coach,” George said. “Karl has had great success as a college coach, both as a head coach and an assistant, and he knows the Pac-12 Conference and West Coast well. It was important that our next coach have CU ties, and Karl has those ties having worked at CU twice previously. Karl shares my passion for Colorado and our vision for winning championships. He will be a tremendous mentor and role model for our student-athletes, and he will provide great leadership for our program going forward.” 

The CU Board of Regents still have to approve Dorrell’s contract, which will be $18 million for five seasons.

Dorrell had previously been on Colorado staffs two other times in his career, including most recently as offensive coordinator under Rick Neuheisel from 1995- 98.

Dorrell was named head coach of his alma mater UCLA in 2003, where he lasted five seasons and went to a bowl game every year finishing with a career 35 – 27 record before being fired after the 2007 season.

Dorrell had previously been receivers coach for the New York Jets 2015 – 18 under Todd Bowles (above) and two of his receivers had made the Pro Bowl during his time there.

Colorado picked Dorrell from an interview process that also included former Buffaloes player and Kansas City Super Bowl offensive coordinator Eric Bienemy, who interviewed and was under strong consideration.

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