DAVIE, Fla. — During Thursday’s scrimmage that capped off Dolphins minicamp, the Aqua team featured a pairing that fans would love to see on an every-play basis: Dion Jordan and Cameron Wake on opposite ends of the defensive line.
Jordan, the former Oregon Duck who the team traded up for to get with the third overall pick of the 2013 draft, didn’t make much of an impact in his rookie season after coming off shoulder surgery in February.
This year, however, Jordan might be primed to break through and live up to his lofty draft status.
"I’m healthy. I’m good. I’m excited about this coming season," said Jordan, who added muscle and is clearly enjoying his first camp as a 100 percent healthy player.
"(Last year) I just came off surgery, so I definitely feel the difference," said Jordan. "I had no time to rehab and take care of my body last year. Any time you can go out there at 100 percent, you can focus on your craft, improve yourself and help your team."
Jordan’s offseason improvement has also caught the eye of his teammates on the defensive line.
Speaking on Sirius NFL Radio, defensive tackle Randy Starks said about Jordan: "I can see a big difference from him and I can pretty much guarantee that he’ll have more sacks then he did last year."
Of course, seeing the field a little more will help Jordan in that quest. The problem is, the DE position is stacked, with Cameron Wake, Olivier Vernon and Derrick Shelby all suitably equipped talent-wise to keep Jordan on the sidelines.
And while he didn’t practice much with the first-team defense these last few weeks — raising eyebrows from some observers — he played well in Thursday’s scrimmage, disrupting plays in the backfield and even lining up at defensive tackle on occasion.
"With this offense Coach Lazor has brought in, it’s a matchup game," said Jordan. "It’s a lot more movement, shifts and motion. We change from one technique to another, it’s very similar to what we did at Oregon."
"Any opportunity we can get to offset the things they’re doing, we’re going to do it. I’m just trying to be versatile. Whatever we see during the actual season, we’ll be prepared."