The two newcomers are veteran cornerback Mackensie Alexander and nose tackle Niles Scott.
The decision to put Williams on the disabled list had been expected since it emerged Sunday that he had torn his ACL in the preseason opener at Tampa Bay the night before. It’s a very disappointing development for Williams, who really was having a strong second NFL training camp up to that point.
Alexander, who played at Immokalee High in southwest Florida, played five of his first six NFL seasons with the Vikings and returned to Minnesota on a one-year deal in 2021 after one season with the Cincinnati Bengals.
Alexander, who has started 25 games in his six NFL seasons, struggled in 2021 by his pro football benchmark metrics, allowing a 119.2 passer rating when targeted. His numbers in that category were much more impressive in the previous three seasons: 82.1 in 2018, 84.3 in 2019 and 82.3 in 2020.
Alexander (5-10, 190) played at Clemson, where he was a teammate of Christian Wilkins during Wilkins’ freshman year in 2015.
Here’s what editor Will Ragatz of SI Fan Nation’s sister site Inside the Vikings wrote about Alexander as he was about to hit free agency in March: “Alexander might have been one of the Vikings’ most disappointing players. last season. He returned to Minnesota after a year away and didn’t seem like the same dependable cornerback we saw from 2017-2019. Alexander was hit frequently in coverage and was just fine as a running defender. But the Vikings need corners, and such Maybe they think he could get a payback year on another minimum one-year veterans deal.
Alexander was one of two cornerbacks who worked out for the Dolphins on Monday, according to PFN reporter Aaron Wilson, the other being rookie free agent Raleigh Texada.
HOW IS MACKENSIE ALEXANDER AT DOLPHINS HIGH SCHOOL
Alexander’s acquisition comes after the knee injury landed Williams on injured reserve, though there’s an interesting twist here.
Williams’ injury left the Dolphins particularly weak in terms of proven depth when it comes to borderline cornerbacks, but Alexander has spent his career in the slot.
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Nik Needham has developed into a very good slot corner for the Dolphins, so the acquisition of Alexander suggests he’s a depth move there unless the Dolphins just want to take Needham out if they need someone to play. over there.
Byron Jones, who is scheduled to start out against Xavien Howard, has been at PUP since the start of training camp after undergoing off-season leg surgery.
With Williams out, Keion Crossen looks next in line behind Howard and Jones, and ahead of 2020 first-round pick Noah Igbinoghene.
THE BOOK ABOUT NILES SCOTT
Scott joins the Dolphins with six regular-season games of NFL experience, but those dates back to 2018 when he was a member of the Cincinnati Bengals.
Since then, he has been in and out of practice squads for the Buffalo Bills, Las Vegas Raiders, Tennessee Titans, New England Patriots and Seattle Seahawks.
His last team was Seattle, which cut him in May. He missed the 2019 season with a foot injury.
Scott (6-2, 321) was an AP Little America first-team selection in 2017 after starring at Division III Frostburg State in Maryland.
Scott, who entered the NFL as a rookie free agent in 2018, had 10 sacks that senior year in college.
This was his NFL.com scouting report before the 2018 draft:
“Squat but quick, Scott is a powerful 3-point coach with good athleticism and agility to dig into the pocket once he gets there. Some NFL teams might see him as a shady nose in a 4-3 scheme, but he can have the ability to fit into any of those defensive tackle spots. His level of competition will be heavily scrutinized, but he may have the ability to rank as an undrafted free agent once he beefs up his handiwork.
“The wide lower body provides a sturdy and balanced base. The low center of gravity allows for sharp curves around the edge of the blockers. It works with more efficiency of movement on the way to the ball. The powerful drive of the legs and the low level of the pad helps him push through gaps Good stalking speed in pursuit of quarterbacks Plays with good vision past blockers Has the size and tools to improve quickly as a running defender .
“Power unleashed on enemies much smaller than you’ll see in the pros. It lacks length and allows your frame to be attacked with first hands too often. You’ll have to learn to operate with previous hands as a defender on the run. The takeoff Starting is average and based on gradual power over explosiveness. He doesn’t have as many early wins through nervous upper body as you’d like.”