After a much maligned stint in Philadelphia and a rough start as a Miami Dolphin, Byron Maxwell has shown his worth over the past several weeks. Despite being initially considered one of the Achilles heels of Vance Joesph’s defense, over time Maxwell has both expressed and displayed comfort in the system.
“You get paid way too much money to play like that. He needs to believe in himself and practice.” Those were the words of New York Jets receiver Brandon Marshall following their 27-23 loss to the Phins. Those were the words of a receiver who was held to under 50 yards.
Although it is true that Maxwell gets paid quite a lot (he is slated to make $17 million over the next two years) it does not seem to be wasted money. Ever since his benching against the Bengals in week 4, Maxwell has shown growth and improvement in both his technique and his overall coverage. In a game that saw the entire defense let alone secondary get roasted, it was Maxwell who played consistently. He allowed only 2 completions to the red hot Joe Flacco, along with an interception and forced fumble.
Although you could make a strong case for parting ways with the 28 year old corner, keeping Maxwell does make sense. His physical nature works very well in Vance Joseph’s press-zone scheme, and much of his salary is tied up in guaranteed money so saving a few million may not be worth it at the cost of a quality starter. Although you hope that young corners Xavien Howard and Tony Lippett can eventually develop into a strong tandem, keeping a veteran with experience is key in the meantime.
A second look at the trade that sent Maxwell here shows that thus far it has ended favorably for the Dolphins. New GM Chris Grier and VP Mike Tannenbaum should be applauded for their ability to land 3 key starters out of one single pick. The additions of Kiko Alonso, Maxwell, and Laremy Tunsil have helped this team tremendously overall.
What do you think of Maxwell’s play so far this season? Has his improvement made you a believer that he could stick around long term in Miami? Or do you feel that the team should part ways sooner rather than later? Let us know in the comments below.