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Dolphins CB Noah Igbinoghene could finally be coming around in new scheme; Isaiah Wynn talks guard play

MIAMI GARDENS — The Miami Dolphins will need cornerbacks to surface this training camp after the devastating blow of Jalen Ramsey’s left knee injury and surgery.

While they signed a veteran in Eli Apple and are hopeful second-round draft pick Cam Smith can emerge quickly, what if the forgotten Noah Igbinoghene, the 2020 first-round pick, could finally be the one to produce?

He has gotten a greater opportunity in camp following Ramsey’s injury, and at Saturday’s scrimmage at Hard Rock Stadium, he had an interception of quarterback Tua Tagovailoa while defending star wideout Tyreek Hill.

“I was just running down the sideline, saw the ball in the air and went up and got it,” Igbinoghene said. “I was just playing my responsibility and when you do that, and when you focus on your technique, balls start coming your way, and that’s what happened.”

When asked about Igbinoghene following the scrimmage, coach Mike McDaniel hinted that the switch in scheme from former defensive coordinator Josh Boyer to Vic Fangio could be paying dividends.

“Don’t underestimate the journey that is going from system to system in a defense,” McDaniel said. “Specifically, you guys all know that we played a ton of man coverage (previously) and now we play a ton of, really, everything.”

Igbinoghene has had to battle the label of being a bust after he was selected late in the first round of the 2020 draft. He hasn’t seen much playing time in his first three NFL seasons, often a healthy inactive on game days. Although, when he was needed last October amid multiple cornerback injuries, he delivered a game-sealing interception on “Sunday Night Football” against the Pittsburgh Steelers.

Igbinoghene said earlier in camp he has shifted his mindset this year to focusing on himself and how he can get better without paying mind to competition at his position with hopes it leads to better end results. He sees it paying off.

“I think it is,” he said Saturday. “I’m just coming in every single day and working on my craft and getting better. I’m just focused on that and getting better each and every single day. I think I’ll be happy by the end of training camp with where I’m at with my development.”

Now, McDaniel wants to see Igbinoghene build off his success in the scrimmage and recent practices.

“These are things that you like to see and you like to watch what players do with it,” he said. “How does that confidence materialize moving forward? Is he thirsty enough to say, ‘I want more,’ or do you get comfortable?”

Apple also had an interception of Tagovailoa late in Saturday’s scrimmage.

Wynn showing versatility

New Dolphins offensive line signing Isaiah Wynn has most of his NFL experience at tackle, but his best opportunity to crack the starting lineup may be at left guard.

Wynn has gotten some looks at guard, among several linemen in training camp who could push 2021 second-round pick Liam Eichenberg for the starting spot he’s trying to hold on to.

“I’m wherever they need me to be,” Wynn said. “It’s a lot like tackle. Stuff just happens quicker but as I said, I am wherever they need me to be. It’s been good. … Tackle you have more space. Guard everything happens quicker.”

Left tackle Terron Armstead has not done much work in team drills in camp, but the four-time Pro Bowler is solidified in that role once the season begins and assuming health. The Dolphins appear committed to giving Austin Jackson every opportunity at right tackle in the final year on his rookie contract.

Asked if starting is important to him, Wynn, a 2019 first-round selection of the New England Patriots out of Georgia, merely said he wants to help the Dolphins win.

Last season, the responsibility at left guard when Eichenberg was injured, largely landed on Robert Jones’ shoulders. Jones is process-oriented with his approach to camp and doesn’t have starting competition on his mind either.

“I’m just trying to get better each and every day, be the best player I can be,” Jones said. “Whenever that opportunity comes, I’m going to be grateful for it.”

Wilson workout

The Dolphins worked out free-agent defensive tackle Marvin Wilson, a Florida State alum, on Saturday morning, according to a league source.

Miami has a trio of defensive tackles entering the final year on their current contracts in Christian Wilkins, Zach Sieler and Raekwon Davis, but beyond that, the team could be in need of reserve defensive tackles to emerge.

“We’re happy with Zach, Christian and Raekwon,” Fangio said Friday. “We need to find two other guys, three other guys, to surface as the fourth, fifth, and sixth defensive linemen, and so far nobody has done that.”

Saturday’s scrimmage could have presented some progress in that regard. Jaylen Twyman, a member of the practice squad last season, had multiple sacks and batted a pass at the line of scrimmage back at Tagovailoa. Josiah Bronson, Brandon Pili and Anthony Montalvo were also seen making plays up front.

“Practice is the first step, a scrimmage is the next step, you got to go against other players, and then you’re in a preseason game,” McDaniel said. “These are human beings that are affected by minor things, and they are putting their best foot forward. You really have to wait and judge the full complexity of the situation to look at all of the opportunities.”

Wilson has appeared in a game each of the past two seasons for the Philadelphia Eagles, totaling seven career tackles.

The Dolphins also worked out defensive tackle Roderick Perry and defensive end Da’Shawn Hand. Perry attended Illinois and Hand went to Alabama.

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