Written by Matthew Cannata
Jamar Taylor was drafted in the second round of the 2013 draft and was a highly touted cornerback coming out of college but due to an injury leading up to the draft, he dropped after some projected him to be a first-round pick. Unfortunately, those injuries continued throughout the season and Taylor saw limited playing time.
However, he’s healthy and he’s ready to make an impact in 2014 and wants everyone to know he’s ready. After a lot of frustration last year, Taylor told some people that there were times he didn’t want to play anymore but he says those words were taken out of context. For Taylor, not being able to perform at the high level frustrated him so much that it led him to that. Now, with a full offseason, he's just about ready to go.
“It’s getting there,” Taylor said after an offseason practice. “He’s definitely coming back out, that person y’all saw talking a lot of stuff, it’s getting there. But I’ve got to crawl before I can walk. I’m just out here trying to pick these older guys’ brains and just continue to try to get better.”
To confirm that Taylor has the eye of the coaches, it was him who got the reps opposite Brent Grimes at cornerback with the first-team defense when Cortland Finnegan sat out during team drills during minicamp.
“I’m definitely more comfortable with the playbook,” Taylor said. “I’m more comfortable with myself, just knowing I’m going out there injury-free. I fly around, I know the calls, just trying to make plays and just take the coaching. It’s definitely a big difference from year one to year two.”
As of now, Finnegan is penciled in as the number two cornerback but Taylor intends to push him as hard as he can during training camp and hopefully take over that role. If he doesn’t though, the Dolphins plan to use him often on the field, especially at the nickel spot.
“I’m blessed,” he said. “That’s the only word to describe it. When you’re at your low, the only way to go is up. It was humbling, very humbling, especially coming out (when) you do so much in college and you come and you see like, ‘Man, this is the real deal,’ and you’re kinda one step behind. You can’t be one step behind. These guys out here, it’s like an all-star team. So very humbling, but I’m blessed. I’m still here, blessed enough to play on this team. I’m ready to roll and try to help out.”