Thursday, July 28, 2011

Dolphins' 2011 rookie class assigned jersey numbers

The Miami Dolphins have assigned jersey numbers to both their drafted and undrafted rookies, and the news arrives without the controversy that accompanied last year's assignments when A. J. Edds was initially issued Zach Thomas' No. 54.

Below are the jersey numbers for the Dolphins' six rookie draft picks:
  • C Mike Pouncey — 63
  • RB Daniel Thomas — 33
  • WR Clyde Gates — 83
  • FB/TE Charles Clay — 31
  • NT Frank Kearse — 66
  • FS Jimmy Wilson — 35

Just as an aside, the Dolphins' fourth-round pick Edmond Gates has apparently requested to be known as 'Clyde' so please take note for those of you scoring at home.

While the jersey number assignments rarely give us any insight into what a player might do on the field, the one thing I think is telling is Clay's No. 31. If he were considered a true tight end, he would have received a number in the 80s or potentially in the 40s. By taking a 30s number, I feel even more confident in my belief that he's going to be worked in more of a fullback-type role. Watch your back, Lousaka Polite.

Additionally, here are the numbers assigned to the Dolphins' nine undrafted rookie free agents:
  • QB Pat Devlin — 9
  • RB Nic Grigsby — 42
  • WR Phillip Livas — 85
  • TE Brett Brackett — 84
  • OG Garrett Chisolm — 60
  • OT D. J. Jones — 71
  • DE Johnny Jones — 62
  • OLB Jonathan Freeny — 49
  • OLB Quinton Spears — 48
  • CB Vince Agnew — 41
  • CB Jose Perez — 43
Freeny and Spears receive non-typical linebacker numbers in the 40s, which would likely change if either were to make the team's active roster in the regular season.

Meanwhile, one thing that interests me is Jones' No. 71, which to my understanding was being worn by 2010 practice squad offensive tackle James Marten. Multiple numbers in training camp are not uncommon, but they are never on the same side of the ball. Possible explanations are that Marten is to be cut, failed his physical, or simply changed numbers.

Right now, the only Dolphins' jersey number I do not know is that of Lionel Dotson. He initially wore No. 71 with the Dolphins but as we know that is now taken. He also wore No. 95 during a stint last year before he landed on injured reserve, but that has since been taken by nose tackle Chris Baker.

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