The great thing about the NFL is that there are so many positions that every year, there is almost always at least one player who has a breakout year on every team, no matter how good or bad the team is. This is one part in a 32 part segment detailing one potential breakout player for the 2012 NFL season on each NFL team. For the Miami Dolphins, that player is defensive end Jared Odrick.
Jared Odrick, a collegiate defensive tackle, was drafted by the Miami Dolphins in the 1st round in 2010 and moved to defensive end in their 3-4 defense, better known as the five-technique position. Odrick’s rookie year basically ended before it started as he broke his leg in the opener after only 22 snaps and was put on IR. In 2011, however, Odrick came back healthy and started to show some of why he was such a highly drafted player as a rotational five-technique, mostly focusing on rushing the passer.
On a crowded defensive line, Odrick played 597 snaps, 393 of which were pass rush snaps, and he had 5 sacks, 3 quarterback hits, and 16 quarterback pressures, good for a rate of 6.1%. His 5.2 pass rush productivity rate ranked 13th at his position. He struggled against the run a little bit, but he didn’t really have to play the run all that much. Heading into his 3rd season, Miami’s defensive line is a lot less crowded as they switch to a 4-3.
Kendall Langford, Igor Olshansky, and Phillip Merling are gone, while former rush linebacker Koa Misi will remain at linebacker. Rather than playing his collegiate position of defensive tackle, the Dolphins will be using him as a hybrid, playing him outside on running downs in the base package and inside on passing downs in sub packages.
That would seem to play best into his strength against he’s going to be good against the run as a defensive end at 6-5 300 and good as a pass rusher at defensive tackle. Also, on a thinner defensive line, Odrick figures to have plenty of opportunity for playing time. He’s also another year removed from his broken leg, which may have still affected him last season. All of that could equal a breakout season for the talented former 1st round pick.
If you’re interested in doing a fantasy football league with me, here’s the link (no draft date set yet, currently standard, with the option to become PPR with group vote). http://msn.foxsports.com/fantasy/football/commissioner/Registration/Private.aspx?league=55086&password=FanSpot2