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Dolphins Position Outlook: Wide Receivers

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Dolphins Position Outlook: Wide Receivers


After making the playoffs for a second straight season under coach Mike McDaniel, the Miami Dolphins are still looking for their first playoff win since 2000. The quest for that victory starts with training camp.

The Dolphins had a surprisingly eventful offseason for a team that started with so little cap space. The team lost homegrown talents like Christian Wilkins and Robert Hunt but added exciting veterans like Odell Beckham Jr., Kendall Fuller, Calais Campbell and Jordyn Brooks.

This series will break down each position on the Dolphins’ roster, providing fans with an in-depth look at each player’s outlook for the coming 2024 season.

This article covers the wide receivers.

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Tyreek Hill

2023 Stats: 119 receptions, 1,799 receiving yards, 13 receiving touchdowns, 15.1 yards per reception

2024 Outlook: To nobody’s surprise, Tyreek Hill is expected to be the centerpiece of Miami’s offense again this season. The veteran speedster broke his own team record for receiving yards last season and scored six more touchdowns.

It’s hard to imagine anyone besides a quarterback winning MVP, but Hill has a real case for how valuable he is to Miami’s offense. He should be a contender for Offensive Player of the Year every season.

Jaylen Waddle

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2023 Stats: 72 receptions, 1,014 receiving yards, 4 receiving touchdowns, 14.1 yards per reception

2024 Outlook: The Dolphins gave Jaylen Waddle an $84.75 million extension this offseason, solidifying his place on the offense for the foreseeable future.

Waddle’s counting numbers went down last season, but he was still one of the NFL’s best “WR2s” by a comfortable margin. We should expect more of the same in 2024. 

Odell Beckham Jr.

2023 Stats (with Ravens): 35 receptions, 565 receiving yards, 3 touchdowns, 16.1 yards per reception

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2024 Outlook: Beckham Jr. is arguably the team’s most notable offseason addition to the offense. The veteran receiver spent last season in Baltimore and contributed well in a limited role.

In Miami, Beckham will be expected to take some of the burden off Hill and Waddle’s shoulders. Those two have carried the offense for two straight seasons with little help from other playmakers.

Beckham isn’t the same player he was with the Giants — or the Browns, even — but he’s still a good route runner with solid downfield receiving chops. If he can haul in between 40 to 45 catches for 500 to 600 yards, that should be considered a successful season.

Braxton Berrios

2023 Stats: 27 receptions, 238 receiving yards, 8.8 yards per reception

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2024 Outlook: Berrios didn’t make much of an impact on offense last season, but he was the team’s primary returner.

For this season, Berrios will have more competition for his slot role. The team drafted two slot receivers, and with Beckham’s addition, Waddle and/or Hill could get more reps from the slot. Even tight end Jonnu Smith factors into the slot conversation a bit.

If Berrios is going to make the team, he’ll have to take advantage of the new kickoff rules and fend off any contenders for the punt return position.

Erik Ezukanma

2023 Stats: Zero catches, five rushing attempts for 22 yards

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2024 Outlook: This season feels like Ezukanma’s last chance to carve out a long-term role within Miami’s offense. The former fourth-round pick didn’t get much playing time last season before landing on IR with a neck injury, and this year’s receiver room is arguably more competitive than last year’s.

Ezukanma’s advantage over other receivers is his size. At 6-2, he’s the team’s tallest receiver and one of just two listed taller than 6 feet. That said, Ezukanma might need to make waves on special teams to make the final roster.

River Cracraft

2023 Stats: 9 receptions, 121 receiving yards, 1 receiving touchdown, 13.4 yards per reception

2024 Outlook: Cracraft is a Mike McDaniel favorite, but he’s got a lot of competition for the backup slot role this offseason. He’s coming off a season where he missed some time with a shoulder injury.

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However, he did make the most of the few opportunities he got in 2023. Cracraft will need to earn his keep on special teams and hold off some younger options on offense.

Braylon Sanders

2023 Stats: Did not play

2024 Outlook: Sanders didn’t play last season after suffering a knee injury during the team’s joint practice with the Atlanta Falcons and ended up on the practice squad.

Sanders is a long shot to make the team again this offseason, but his speed does make him a prototype outside receiver in the offense and a solid option as a gunner on special teams.

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Anthony Schwartz

2023 Stats: Did not play

2024 Outlook: Schwartz didn’t play last season after landing on the Cleveland Browns injured reserve before the start of the season. He’s another player who fits the Dolphins’ speed archetype. Schwartz ran a 4.26 40-yard dash at Auburn’s Pro Day.

His best chance with the Dolphins is to use that speed on special teams. Schwartz could be a kick return option with the new rules. Regardless, Schwartz has an uphill battle to make the roster.

Malik Washington

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2023 Stats (college): 110 catches, 1,426 receiving yards, 9 receiving touchdowns, 13 yards per reception

2024 Outlook: It’s dangerous to be overly optimistic about a fifth-round rookie, but as we wrote following the draft, Washington has a path to being a legitimate contributor.

Washington is a perfect fit for the Dolphins’ offense. He did all the things Miami asks its receivers to do in college at Virginia last season while showing impressive toughness and ball skills. If the Dolphins are looking for a pure slot this year, Washington might be their best option.

Tahj Washington

2023 Stats (college): 59 receptions, 1,062 receiving yards, 8 receiving yards, 18 yards per reception

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2024 Outlook: Tahj Washington is the other late-round receiver the Dolphins selected in the 2024 NFL draft. Like Malik, Tahj is an undersized slot option.

His college film wasn’t as impressive as Malik’s, but Tahj is a solid route runner with good ball skills. He does have some return experience, which might be his best bet to make the 53-man roster. If he doesn’t, the practice squad feels like a safe bet.

Je’Quan Burton

2023 Stats (college): 24 receptions, 277 receiving yards, 2 receiving yards, 11.5 yards per reception

2024 Outlook: We sound like a broken record, but Burton is yet another undersized slot receiver. The UDFA from Florida Atlantic profiles more as a kick return option, which he did 48 times across five college seasons.

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DOLPHINS WIDE RECEIVER SUPERLATIVES

Fastest: Tyreek Hill

Best Route Runner: Tyreek Hill

Most Versatile: Jaylen Waddle

Best Hands: Odell Beckham Jr.

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Return Ability: Braxton Berrios

MOST IMPORTANT QUESTION FOR DOLPHINS WRs

Can the Dolphins Find a Viable Third Option?

This is the same question we asked about the Dolphins’ receiver room last season. Although the team added Beckham and both Washingtons, this remains a legitimate concern.

Signing Beckham makes plenty of sense, and if he’s going to be successful, somewhere like Miami is an ideal spot. However, he’s 31 and has battled injuries practically every season for quite some time now. Since 2019, Beckham has played in more than 10 games twice.

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His 14 games with the Ravens last year were his most since 2019, when he played in 16 games with the Browns. Schematically, Beckham is a good option to take some attention away from Hill and Waddle.

He can line up outside, allowing Hill and Waddle to spend some time in the slot, and he’s fast enough to threaten defenses vertically. The fit makes sense, but if Hill and/or Waddle get hurt, asking Beckham to be a high-volume contributor is quite risky.

Besides Beckham, the Dolphins have a slew of undersized, primary slot receivers. Berrios, Cracraft, Tahj Washington and Malik Washington essentially serve the same purpose on offense.

Berrios and Cracraft are probably better on special teams, and both Washingtons were late-round picks for a reason. Malik Washington’s skill set projects the best to immediate success, but relying on a rookie to be a high-volume contributor isn’t ideal.

Obviously, someone stepping up as a consistent WR3 matters for injury reasons.

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However, the Dolphins offense is the most specialized in the league, so missing Hill and Waddle actually goes beyond missing great players. Without those speed threats, Miami’s offense can become disjointed.

Route timing is key to everything the Dolphins do on offense, so players like Malik Washington and Beckham need to be more than just “fast.” They must be entirely on point with route depths and coverage adjustments.

Whether it’s fair to expect that of a Day 3 rookie and an aging veteran who has never played in an offense like this before is a legitimate question.

Ultimately, the Dolphins’ offense needs to find “change-ups” this season, players or concepts that keep defenses off their bread-and-butter plays. One of the biggest developments could be a legitimate third option who can execute the Dolphins’ best plays and bring something different.

Beckham and Malik Washington have the potential to do those things. Still, each has potential pitfalls to overcome before they can be counted on with confidence. 

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Miami, FL

Miami-Dade County Homeless Trust sends outreach teams to help those living at MIA

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Miami-Dade County Homeless Trust sends outreach teams to help those living at MIA


MIAMI – County workers combed Miami International Airport on Wednesday to find and relocate people living there without permission. 

The stabbing of a 17-year-old homeless girl last Saturday raised awareness of a struggle affecting the airport’s image, travelers’ comfort and a vulnerable population trying to blend in.

The Miami-Dade County Homeless Trust sent outreach teams to help. 

“We are a community who cares about the least, the last, the lost and the forgotten and we will not sleep until we’ve got every single one of them sheltered and housed,” Ron Book, the trust’s chairman said.

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Members of the trust offer services and shelter to people using the airport as a permanent shelter.  The group approached 21 people known to live in the airport. However, only four accepted room at a shelter. 

“You’re trespassing if you don’t,” Book said. “The goal is to make it clear: We need to move you to shelter. We need to get you to a better place.”

A vicious attack inside Terminal J led Book’s team to launch renewed, targeted outreach.

Alexander Love, 29, used a butcher knife to stab a teen 18 times in an unprovoked assault Saturday, Miami-Dade Police said. Both the attacker and victim called the airport home.  Prior to the stabbing, members of the Trust offered services to Love, who moved to Miami from Ohio, Book said. 

Outreach workers know about two dozen people who live in the airport, which violates a county ordinance that requires anyone staying overnight at MIA to have legitimate travel plans or business.

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Airport staff, security and police connect anyone they find breaking the ordinance with help from the Homeless Trust before enforcing trespassing laws.

Members of the trust launched aggressive outreach Wednesday in response to the stabbing.

“Frankly, that is not the image we want for our airport number one,” Book said. “But number two, we want people to feel comfortable when they come to our airport, whether they’re travelers coming in or they’re our community citizens going out. Our job is to make people feel comfortable.”

Book said his team will return to the airport Thursday, Friday and beyond to convince anyone refusing to relocate to accept help.

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University of Miami Verbal Commit Breaks Leg In Scrimmage; Out for the 2024 Season

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University of Miami Verbal Commit Breaks Leg In Scrimmage; Out for the 2024 Season


The 2024 high school season is officially over for Miami Central 4-star safety Amari Wallace.

It’s over before it started.

Wallace participated, with the rest of his Central teammates, in a possible non-sanctioned scrimmage with another high school on Wednesday. He suffered a compound fracture to one of his legs according to a report filed by High School on SI.

He was supposed to be an early enrollee at the University of Miami and was already slated by recruiting experts to compete for one of the two starting safety positions. Now, his status for the 2025 season is unknown. According to the report, the average recovery time for a compound fracture of the leg could be as much as 15 months.

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Wallace might have to take a medical redshirt his freshman season.

The situation surrounding the injury has been called into question.

High school football practice is not supposed to start in Florida until July 29. Full-contact practices are not slated to begin until Aug. 3.

Scrimmages between schools must be sanctioned by the Florida High School Athletic Association. It has not been determined if this scrimmage was sanctioned by the FHSAA.

High School on SI reached out to the principal and the coach of Miami Central, to determine the facts and circumstances of this incident. Neither party has responded.

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Wallace is a recent Miami commit and selected the Hurricanes over Auburn, Louisville and Louisiana State. All verbal commitments are non-binding. Wallace was going to sign with the Hurricanes during Early National Signing Day in December.

Wallace had three interceptions as well as six passes defended and one caused fumble last season. In 2022 he helped Miami Central win the Florida 2M state championship.

The University cannot issue a statement on a player who is not yet signed to a National Letter of Intent. Miami Hurricanes On SI will monitor the situation and report the facts as they come to light.

Scott Salomon is a contributor to Miami Hurricanes On SI. He can be reached at sas@southfloridamedianetwork.com. He can be followed on X @ScottSalomonNFL.

Follow all social media platforms to stay up to date with everything Miami Hurricanes  TwitterFacebook, and Youtube



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What Miami Dolphins coach Mike McDaniel said about Tua Tagovailoa contract

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What Miami Dolphins coach Mike McDaniel said about Tua Tagovailoa contract


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MIAMI GARDENS — Miami Dolphins coach Mike McDaniel addressed the contract status of quarterback Tua Tagovailoa prior to Wednesday’s first practice.

The first question asked of McDaniel was if Tua would be taking part in all or a portion of the preseason practices as he seeks a contract extension. McDaniel said the situation is “very fluid.”

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“I think its important to acknowledge Tua is in the midst of contract negotiations,” McDaniel said. “That’s important to him and the football team.

“It’s very fluid. We’re taking it day-by-day. I know today I’m expecting what we did in the spring (and) we’ll move forward for what’s best for him and us.”

McDaniel added everyone is aware of the importance of these negotiations to the Dolphins and Tua and his family.

“Everybody know he wants a contract done. Everybody is trying their best to get a deal done.”

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Miami Dolphins roster projection 2024: Resetting 53-man depth chart before training camp

Recent: Will Tua Tagovailoa participate in Miami Dolphins training camp practices?

Tua sat out some drills in the spring to make a point about his disatisfaction. That was after a discussion and agreement between the quarterback McDaniel.

By sitting out completely, Tua would have been fined $50,000 per day. He is playing under the contract he signed after being selected fifth overall by the Dolphins in 2020. He is seeking an extension in the $55 million a year range, similar to those signed by Joe Burrow and Trevor Lawrence.

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The question of whether Tua would show up was answered Tuesday when players said he was in the building and they expected their quarterback to be at practice.

McDaniel does not expect Tua’s contract dispute to be a distraction to the team.

“I’m very proud of the team this offseason,” McDaniel said, adding he believes the team has “matured in how we go about our business.”

“In a different way its the same challenge you face (during the season). I’m not going to forecast how long it goes on. We’ll adjust as we see fit. All those things are a distraction if you allow it to be.

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“I have no concerns about distractions and we together do the best we can to put our best step forward.”

McDaniel added it is very confident in his relationship with Tua, and said the quarterback can separate business from what it happening on the football field.

Tom D’Angelo is a senior sports columnist and golf reporter for The Palm Beach Post. He can be reached at tdangelo@pbpost.com.



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