Miami Dolphins rookie defensive back Cam Smith has a clear goal for his first season in the NFL. With Miami’s rookie minicamp getting underway on Friday, Smith said that he wants to “assert my dominance on people.”
Dolphins fans are certainly going to love that mentality, as Smith is part of a revamped secondary for the 2023 season. The Dolphins also added cornerback Jalen Ramsey in a trade with the Los Angeles Rams this offseason.
Ramsey is a Pro Bowl cornerback that plays an extremely physical style of football. Last season, Ramsey appeared in all seventeen games for the Rams, picking off four passes in the process. He finished with a career-high 88 combined tackles, four tackles for loss, two forced fumbles and one fumble recovery.
It seems like Smith wants to play just as aggressively, which is a good sign for Miami. The Dolphins struggled in pass coverage last season, and it’s clear the team has addressed the area in the offseason.
Miami ranked 27th in the NFL in passing yards allowed last season. Despite having having plenty of issues in pass defense, the Dolphins still made the postseason with a 9-8 record.
Smith, the No. 51 overall pick in the 2023 NFL Draft, played four seasons at the University of South Carolina, standing out as one of the nation’s better defensive backs.
He played in 32 games across those four seasons, registering 91 total tackles, 3.5 tackles for loss, six interceptions, 18 passes defended and one forced fumble.
Smith’s best season may have come in 2021, as he posted a career-high 41 total tackles and three interceptions for the Gamecocks.
Miami can ease Smith into action a bit in his first season with Ramsey and Xavien Howard already entrenched in the team’s secondary as starters.
Dolphins defensive coordinator Vic Fangio appears to be excited to work with Smith. Fangio actually called Smith a couple of days before the Dolphins selected him in the 2023 NFL Draft.
Having veteran leadership with Ramsey and Howard as well as a great coach in Fangio should help Smith make the most of his rookie season for a Dolphins team that is intent on contending after last season’s postseason appearance.