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NFL Preseason Preview Capsules: AFC

AFC East: Miami Dolphins

OPEN CAMP: July 25, Davie, Florida.

LAST YEAR: Dolphins were wildly inconsistent, their season rocked by bullying scandal that raised questions about locker room leadership. To make postseason for first time in five years, they needed to win one of final two games against Bills or the Jets, both out of playoff chase. Instead, Miami lost by combined 39-7. General manager Jeff Ireland left after six years. Coach Joe Philbin returns for third season, might need to make playoffs to keep job.

IMPORTANT ADDITIONS: GM Dennis Hickey; offensive coordinator Bill Lazor; OL coach John Benton; LT Branden Albert and RT Ja'Wuan James; DT Earl Mitchell; RB Knowshon Moreno; S Louis Delmas; WR Jarvis Landry; CB Cortland Finnegan; OLs Shelley Smith, Jason Fox, Daryn Colledge and Billy Turner.

IMPORTANT LOSSES: Ireland; offensive coordinator Mike Sherman; OL coach Jim Turner; OTs Jonathan Martin, Tyson Clabo and Bryant McKinnie; G Richie Incognito; DT Paul Soliai; S Chris Clemons; CBs Nolan Carroll and Dimitri Patterson; TE Dustin Keller.

CAMP NEEDS: Offense must adjust to Lazor's system while finding firepower after Dolphins scored once in final 24 possessions last year. Sort out O-line with five new starters after departures of Martin and Incognito, both involved in bullying scandal. Secondary will have two new starters. Should they keep Koa Misi at MLB after moving him there during offseason drills.

EXPECTATIONS: Dolphins were outgained by 743 yards last year, suggesting they overachieved to go 8-8. Neither offense nor defense appears to be first-place caliber, and unless QB Ryan Tannehill makes dramatic improvement in third NFL season, another Miami coaching search is more likely in January than a playoff game.

EXPECTATIONS: Dolphins were outgained by 743 yards last year, suggesting they overachieved to go 8-8. Neither offense nor defense appears to be first-place caliber, and unless QB Ryan Tannehill makes dramatic improvement in third NFL season, another Miami coaching search is more likely in January than a playoff game. (AP Photo/J Pat Carter)



The opinions expressed are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Comcast.

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