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What Jordan Tripp Will Bring To The Miami Dolphins

Dannell Ellerbe and Philip Wheeler both struggled during their first season with Miami Dolphins. The two linebackers were inconsistent in both run and pass coverage situations. In an attempt to upgrade the position, the Dolphins decided to draft Montana Grizzlies linebacker Jordan Tripp in the fifth round of the 2014 NFL Draft.

Tripp was a two-time AP FCS All-American (2012-13) and two-time first-team All-Big Sky selection (2012-13).

While he may not be the most athletic linebacker, Tripp brings a lot to the table. At 6’3″ 234 pounds, Tripp has an outstanding motor and is always giving maximum effort on every play.

Tripp started in his first three games as a junior at Montana in 2011, but suffered a season-ending shoulder injury and obtained a medical redshirt after the season.

In 2012 as redshirt junior, Tripp had 95 tackles, including 13.5 tackles for loss and 5.5 sacks. Then in 2013 as a senior, Tripp recorded 100 tackles to go along with 5.5 tackles for loss and two sacks. He also registered five forced fumbles, four interceptions and two defensive touchdowns in those two seasons combined.

Tripp was selected to play in the 2014 Senior Bowl and played extremely well, which improved his draft stock. Tripp is a real playmaker with a nose for the football. He flies around the field and is sometimes overly aggressive, getting caught overrunning the play.

While most project Tripp as a 4-3 outside linebacker, he received some reps at inside linebacker during the minicamps I attended. Tripp getting reps in the inside can only be viewed as a positive for Dolphins. This will give Tripp an opportunity to learn more about the defense, and also be more versatile in case of an injury.

Don’t expect Tripp to be a starter on day one of training camp. He will have to play special teams to earn a spot on the Dolphins. Tripp does have experience as a long-snapper at Montana, so playing special teams won’t be anything new for him.

Tripp is a linebacker that has a lot of raw ability. In order to become a starting linebacker, Tripp have to get a little bigger, but he has the body frame to do so. He will need time to develop, but I can see Tripp becoming a starter down the road. Tripp eventually could wind up being one of the steals of the entire 2014 NFL draft.

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