Special Competition Is Coming This Offseason

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The Dolphins have signed a long-snapper and a punter in the offseason, but Andrew Franks currently stands as the only kicker on the roster.

Special Teams Coordinator Darren Rizzi said the Dolphins evaluated rookie kickers heading into the draft and didn’t dismiss the possibility of adding a kicker at some point. But he also said he’s got plenty of confidence in Franks.

“I thought Andrew started off very strong, he hit a wall in the middle a little bit, but we were really happy with the way he finished the season,” Rizzi said. “I was happy way he finished and I’m looking for him to pick up where he left off. My confidence in Andrew is high based on how he finished last year.”

The new punter is rookie free agent Matt Haack and the long-snapper is Winston Chapman, who didn’t play last season after sustaining a knee injury in his last year at Mississippi State.

Chapman will provide competition for John Denney, who will turn 39 in December and is the longest-tenured member of the team. Denney, who first joined the Dolphins as a rookie free agent in 2005, re-signed in March shortly after becoming an unrestricted free agent.

“John is older than me,” Rizzi joked before adding, “not quite, not quite. John is getting up there in age. Number one, the guy that we brought in, Winston Chapman is a guy we evaluated last year and we were looking to bring into camp last season but he had an ACL injury in his senior year at Mississippi State. We really liked his skill set

“The one thing about John, I joke about his age all the time, but he is in tremendous physical condition for a guy at his age. I don’t know if there’s a guy that has a better work ethic than John. He was probably in the building more than I was in the offseason. He’s always here, always working on his body, always working on his skill. The thought process there is, number one, we felt like we’ve got a really solid snapper for competition and, number two, we just thought it would be a good deal with where John is in his career.”

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