Miami Dolphins CB Ramsey embraces expectations, battles with Hill, Waddle


Miami Dolphins cornerback Jalen Ramsey speaks to reporters at a news conference Thursday at Baptist Health Training Complex in Miami Gardens, Fla. Photo by Alex Butler/UPI

Miami Dolphins cornerback Jalen Ramsey speaks to reporters at a news conference Thursday at Baptist Health Training Complex in Miami Gardens, Fla. Photo by Alex Butler/UPI

MIAMI GARDENS, Fla., March 16 (UPI) — Jalen Ramsey is embracing the high expectations for the 2023 Miami Dolphins and is ready for heated practice battles with wide receivers Tyreek Hill and Jaylen Waddle, he told reporters Thursday in Miami Gardens, Fla.

“On paper, this is the best group I’ve been a part of,” the All-Pro cornerback said at his introductory news conference at the Baptist Health Training Center. “I feel like I’ve been a part of some good groups, in Jacksonville and Los Angeles.

“On paper, I feel like this is the best one. … We can speak it as much as we want to. We have to go out and prove it.”

Earlier this week, the Dolphins made headlines for the second-consecutive off-season with the acquisition of an All-Pro talent. They shipped five draft picks to the Kansas City Chiefs last year for wide receiver Tyreek Hill.

On Wednesday, the Dolphins sent a third-round pick and tight end Hunter Long to the Los Angeles Rams in exchange for Ramsey. The Dolphins also added Pro Bowl offensive tackle Terron Armstead and linebacker Bradley Chubb to their roster in 2022 as part of a roster talent injection.

This off-season, they’ve made several signings to improve their depth, in addition to the courtship with arguably the best cornerback in the NFL over the last several seasons.

Ramsey will line up opposite fellow All-Pro defensive back Xavien Howard to form arguably the best cornerback tandem in the NFL.

Ramsey received the third-best defensive grade among cornerbacks last season from Pro Football Focus. Howard also ranked among the best in previous years, but struggled in 2022. He still joined Ramsey among the highest-rated cornerbacks at run defense in 2022-23.

The Dolphins also boast one of the most elite tandems on the other side of the ball, with with Hill and fellow star wide receiver Jaylen Waddle. Practice battles between Hill, Waddle, Ramsey and Howard should be fun to watch, based on their talent and football resumes.

“I’m going to be the first one [lining up],” Ramsey said. “Whoever wants it. That’s how we are going to roll around here. We are trying to be the best.”

Ramsey said he doesn’t care who he faces in practice, he will be up for the task of shutting them down. Fans will get their first glimpse of those battles at off-season training camp.

“As soon as I’m on the field, that’s who I am,” Ramsey said. “I have that intensity, fire and passion. I can’t turn that down. It’s on at all times, in practice and everything.

“I’m sure those guys will be ready to. I really embrace being on a team with really good, elite wide receivers. I was in Los Angeles with Cooper Kupp. but we didn’t always get to battle it out every time.”

Ramsey said intensity from those battles should spread through the Dolphins improved roster in 2023. His six Pro Bowl selections, three All-Pro nods and Super Bowl ring are proof of his previous success, but he also said he is driven by the notion of being considered one of the greatest cornerbacks in league history.

“Obviously I want to be a Hall of Famer,” Ramsey said. “Honestly, I think I am Hall of Famer, but I’m trying to be a first-ballot [inductee]. I want to be in the same conversations as Darrelle Revis, Charles Woodson and Deion Sanders. That’s where I’m headed. That’s my motivation and my mindset.

“But I want to bring all of that to a new team, to friends and some guys I feel like are deserving of that success, playoff wins and Super Bowls. If I can help bring in that aspect a little bit that will be fulfilling.

“If I can help guys grow and go to the next level, to become Pro Bowlers and All-Pros, that’s another motivating factor for me.”

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