Acquisition of the New Miami Dolphins Melvin Ingram may not be the same dominant force as he was when he played with the Chargers, but he could still provide the Dolphins with another threat around the edge.
Ingram who agreed terms with the dolphins on Sunday, He stormed the NFL scene during his first nine seasons with the Los Angeles Chargers as he made three Pro Bowls straight from 2017-19 and carried 49 bags total. He added two additional bags last season, splitting his time between the Pittsburgh Steelers and Kansas City Chiefs.
Some of Ingram’s best new matches last season came against the Miami teams they will be playing this season. His three highest scores came in 2021 in the PFF against the Los Angeles Chargers, Buffalo Bills, and Green Bay Packers.
We’ve decided to dive into some Ingram’s stats to see how he can help the dolphins against pass and run next season.
What can Melvin Ingram add to the passing rush in Miami?
Ingram’s calling card throughout his career has been his ability to stalk passers-by. From 2015 to 2019, Ingram scored no fewer than seven sacks in one season, including two seasons where he had 10.5 sacks.
However, Ingram’s 2021 campaign left something to be desired in the sack category. He finished last year with just two bags – his lowest level since the 2013 season.
Sacks is a flawed stat that doesn’t tell the whole story because Ingram was still instrumental in passing last season. He finished with a PFF score of 74.1 for the season, scoring 42 overall presses.
Ingram also finished 2021 with a respectable 10 quarterback hits and 29 wheels in just 371 lunge reps.
While both historical and recent productions by Ingram tick the box, the true value he could bring to Miami’s rush this season is hard to quantify. Ingram listed at 6-2, 247 pounds, with experience moving around the line of scrimmage.
Lots of Miami Blitz packs include multiplayer, sometimes up to five players, standing in different gaps along the line of melee. This causes a lot of confusion for offenses, and is one of the many reasons the Dolphins’ defense has succeeded under the direction of defensive coordinator Josh Boyer.
Ingram is a perfect fit for this style of play. He’s got a slender body structure to photograph internal gaps and has extensive experience in dashing to the edge. Ingram is also an intelligent player who understands how to effectively free his teammates from stunts and twists, which is another hallmark of Miami’s defense.
It’s a versatile weapon on a team that already has a lot of those, and it has a proven track record of knowing how to use it.
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Ingram’s defense will keep him in the field
Running defense isn’t something that gets talked about a lot when it comes to top defenders, but it’s very important, and it’s especially important in Miami’s defensive scheme.
It doesn’t matter whether Ingram plays a stand-alone lunge or a manual rusher, Boyer will expect him to put together a solid advantage against running – he’s an integral part of Miami’s dual-gap defense and running bouts.
Ingram should be able to handle that responsibility given his numbers from last season. The veteran finished 2021 with a career-high score of 83.5 against racing, according to the PFF. Ingram’s previous best season against racing came in 2016 when he received a PFF score of 79.5.
Most of Ingram’s best matches against the race came after he was traded to the Chiefs last season. He scored four “stops” – interventions that led to a negative offensive game – against the Broncos and three against the Charger.
Ingram did well against the race when looking at the advanced stats as well. He finished with the second-highest point redemption above against the Chiefs race last season, according to Sports Info Solutions.
Basically, when Ingram was on the field and the other team was running football, he would help his team win even if she didn’t show up in the box.
While Ingram undoubtedly improved its play against running, it also had the advantage of a small sample size. Only 32 percent of Ingram’s shots last season came against runs, so some regression should be expected for this season, but if Ingram plays close to the level he played last year, that’s good enough.
For Dolphins, Ingram’s defense of running will help justify using it more often. Boyer can take comfort in letting Ingram out on the field out of obvious passing positions. He’ll likely still be a passing specialist this coming season, but his improved running defense should earn him a few more reps per game.
Not only is Ingram a great on-pitch fit for the Dolphins, he’s also a perfect fit in their locker room. Dolphins have a number of young players who could play a similar role to Ingram, including Andrew Van Ginkel, Jaelen Phillips and even third-round rookie Channing Tindall.
All of these players can benefit from seeing how Ingram practices, how he watches the game movie, and how he adapts to offensive linemen in flight. This shouldn’t be an unfamiliar role for Ingram, who served as the team leader while with the Chargers.
Ingram’s leadership responsibility in helping the young attackers pass should reflect Terron Armstead’s role in helping develop Miami’s young attackers.
Ingram also has some post-season experience that younger Dolphins pass users can rely on. In seven post-season games, Ingram produced 15 single tackles, five assists, four sacks, one recover stumble, and one interception.
Ingram knows how to win, and he knows how to play some of his best when the lights are brightest. These are the things that every young player on the Dolphin List can learn from.