The Miami Dolphins have been in search of another running back replacement since Lamar Miller accepted a contracted with the Texans. It has been a tough road so far; they have been through two possible replacements who both took another offer. So why not stay in house for this need?
Two of the Dolphins’ current running backs are Damien Williams and Jay Ajayi. They both are young, only 23 and 22 respectively, and have been with the Dolphins for a couple of years now. Ajayi’s stats are much higher than that of Williams in terms of carries and yardage, but they both were quite close in yards per carry average with Williams coming in at 3.7 and Ajayi at 3.8. The Dolphins have been making offers to older players, but they have two young players at home that have not reached their full potential.
Williams is heading into his third season with Miami, and Ajayi was a rookie last season, so it is fair to say their careers are not yet fully established. Sure, it can be necessary to have experienced players on the roster, but players from other teams want giant contracts to even consider going to Miami. Yes, this is how the business works, but the Dolphins could save some of the money and apply it to their existing lineup.
Meanwhile, the duo of Ajayi and Williams could provide a solid 1-2 punch of speed and power, even if one does not emerge as the lead back. Keep in mind that Miller was not considered a premiere back before the start of 2015, but he proved throughout the season that he was capable. This may be an opportunity for Williams or Ajayi to emerge in a similar manner.
However, it was recently reported that the Dolphins are in trade talks with the Kansas City Chiefs for running back Knile Davis. Davis was a third round pick by the Chiefs back in 2013, but he has never truly lived up to his potential, falling to third on the depth chart last year after Jamaal Charles was injured. Even if Davis’s ceiling is high, Ajayi’s rookie stats were already significantly higher than Davis’s in 2015. Williams and Davis have similar stats, with Davis being slightly higher). Additionally, at age 24, Davis does not represent a major step up when it comes to experience.
Knile Davis 2015 Stats: CAR 28, YDS 72, AVG 2.6, TDS 1
Jay Ajayi 2015 Stats: CAR 49, YDS 187, AVG 3.8, TDS 1
Damien Williams 2015 Stats: CAR 16, YDS 59, AVG 3.7, TDS 0
When comparing the stats between Knile Davis, Jay Ajayi, and Damien Williams, there is a strong case for looking within the current roster instead of trying to make a splash via trades. The Dolphins could also bolster the running back position via the draft.