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Dolphins Add Experienced Pass-Rushing Standout Calais Campbell

The Miami Dolphins add seasoned NFL veteran pass rusher Calais Campbell to its defensive line for the 2023-2024 season.

The Miami Dolphins and General Manager Chris Grier continued to add more veteran presence only a week after minicamp. This time, on the defensive line. The Dolphins have agreed to terms to sign veteran defensive end Calais Campbell to a one-year deal for an undisclosed amount Thursday, according to NFL Network’s Tom Pelissero. The six-time Pro Bowler will be entering his 17th season in the same city he started his collegiate career.

Dolphins Add Experienced Pass-Rushing Standout Calais Campbell

Campbell’s 16-Year Resume

Campbell, a standout at the University of Miami from 2005-2007, was selected in the second round of the 2008 NFL Draft by the Arizona Cardinals. The 6-foot-8-inch pass rusher was described as “the tallest lineman to suit up for the Hurricanes” and was regarded as the premier defensive end from his draft class.

Despite not starting his rookie season, Campbell earned the first-string position with the Cardinals after an impressive sophomore year and spent the rest of his 20s as an undisputed starter. He earned two Pro Bowl appearances and was named NFL All-Pro twice while with Arizona.

Campbell left the Grand Canyon State and joined the Jacksonville Jaguars on a four-year, $60 million deal in 2017. The 300-pound defensive tackle was an immediate impact for Jacksonville with 47 solo tackles and 14.5 sacks that same year. Campbell finished second in voting for the NFL’s Defensive Player of the Year award.

He spent three years with the Jaguars before joining the Baltimore Ravens in 2020. Campbell played both on the left and right end as a pass rusher but didn’t record any stats similar to his time in Jacksonville.The seasoned veteran went south to the Atlanta Falcons in 2023. Campbell jolted his numbers with 32 solo tackles, 24 tackles assisted, 17 quarterback hits, and 6.5 sacks — his best since 2019. At 37 years old, Campbell has forced 17 fumbles, three safeties, sacked quarterbacks 105.5 times, and scored three touchdowns off fumbles throughout his career.

Campbell Might Be the Missing Piece to Miami’s Pass Rush

Campbell brings 16 years of experience to a relatively unproven defensive line. This addition by Miami comes off a 2023 season that ended with injuries and departures in the Dolphins’ pass-rushing game.

Miami experienced the loss of two vital D-line pieces during the season. Pass rushers Jaelan Phillips and Bradley Chubb both suffered season-ending injuries in the midst of the regular season. The injuries themselves limited the Dolphins defense toward its fight for the AFC East title. The Dolphins ended up a game short with a week 18 loss to the Buffalo Bills. Miami finished its season with an 11-6 record and a 26-7 loss in the AFC Wild Card against the Kansas City Chiefs.

Pro Bowl defensive tackle Christian Wilkins left Miami to sign a four-year, $180 million deal with the Las Vegas Raiders. Campbell can integrate himself into this defense by taking Wilkins’ role alongside the defensive line. The 2019 Walter Payton NFL Man of the Year can jump into Wilkins’ former position beside defensive tackle Zach Sieler and create pressure on the quarterback as a 3-4, or 4-3 end.

Campbell’s veteran leadership in the trenches can also benefit first-round rookie pass rusher Chop Robinson. A member of the NFL 2010s All-Decade Team, Campbell can aid in Robinson’s progression as a leader.

Grier Continues to Eye Veteran Help

Campbell is one of multiple offseason additions by the Dolphins that have lucrative amounts of NFL experience. Miami recently signed eight-year veteran safety Marcus Maye Monday and picked up Super Bowl winning linebacker Shaq Barrett.

These additions showcased Grier’s want for a Super Bowl contender in South Florida. In retrospect, more additions are expected to join Miami in the days leading toward training camp in late July. Potentially, more veteran help could be on the way.

Main Photo: Stephen Lew-USA TODAY Sports


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