The Dolphins flipped from a 3-4 to a 4-3 base defense last season, so there was extra early attention on the defensive front as far as the line combinations, rotations, etc. But the secondary — defensive coordinator Kevin Coyle’s specialty in Cincinnati — was also rebuilt, relying heavily on safeties Reshad Jones and Chris Clemons.
Quietly, Jones had a breakout season in 2012, continuing an upward statistical trend in his third season (second as a regular starter), and improving virtually across the board.
CBS Sports’ Pete Prisco, in Davie as a part of his training camp tour, told The Finsiders’ Jesse Agler that Jones, along with All-Pro Cam Wake, is one of reasons to be least worried about the 2013 Dolphins.
“If you ask the majority of people out there, right now, who played better safety in 2012, Reshad Jones or Ed Reed, they’d say Ed Reed. Reshad Jones outplayed him double,” Prisco said. “That’s how good Reshad Jones played last year.”
That may sound sacrilege, even to the most plugged-in fans; Reed, after all, is a sure-fire Hall of Famer who is wrapping up a dominant run. But Prisco may have a point — at least statistically. Jones finished the 2012 season with more tackles (92 to 58), more sacks (one to zero), more forced fumbles (two to zero) and the same amount of interceptions as Reed (four).
Another a big year, coupled with the Dolphins playing into January, and Jones could shed the “up-and-comer” label and earn full-fledged star status.
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