By: Ron Hiatt
The Dolphins entered the off-season with one of the worst performing offensive lines in the entire NFL. Fans discuss this year after year, but it isn’t like the team has not tried to pour resources into the position. Enter the 2020 draft and the Dolphins select not one but three big men with athletic traits to replenish the depleted talent level.
In the 2nd round with pick 39 the Dolphins selected Robert Hunt G/T out of Louisiana-Layette. At 6’5’’ 323 lbs, the direction Flores wanted the offense to go became clear which is to be a more physical team. Hunt has position flexibility to play Guard or Tackle and has blocked for a left-handed Quarterback while at Louisiana-Layette.
When you look at Hunt on film, what stands out for me is that he finishes every block and has good movement for a big man. Hunt drew rave reviews from the Alabama coaching staff after their game, as a tough, physical match-up and presented issues for their defense.
The first four games Hunt was used in packages as a Tight End and on special teams. In Week 5, Hunt was named the starting Right Tackle due to an injury to fellow rookie Tackle, Austin Jackson in Week 4. Jesse Davis replaced Jackson at Left Tackle for Week 5. The fans, including me, can see a big difference in the offensive line play even with three rookies playing significant time and not having a real off-season because of Covid-19 protocols.
Hunt is credited with 1 penalty and 0 sacks allowed thus far. In his first start Week 5, he allowed only two hurries vs 49’ers, although while missing Nick Bosa. In his second start during Week 6 vs Jets front, he allowed four hurries. After the bye week, Hunt has an interesting match-up with Rams front and Aaron Donald that I am excited to see.
The three rookie offensive line draft picks formed an early bond and have come in with a work first, self-start mentality, which is refreshing to see. Gone are the days of the finesse play on the offensive line. Flores’ plan to improve the physicality of the team is evident by the selection of Hunt. He ushers in the physical brand of football which fans want, and I am all in for.
Through the first quarter of the 2020 season, I am encouraged by the physicality shown so far by young players like Hunt on this offensive line. I am excited to see the weekly improvement “The Mountain” shows. The future of the Dolphins offensive line bright with Robert Hunt and his fellow rookies.
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