Dolphins’ Bradley Chubb will hold himself to a “higher standard” with a full offseason in Miami

Bradley Chubb was brought to the Miami Dolphins to make a major impact. That’s what an NFL franchise expects when it trade a first round pick for a player.

Acquiring the standout outside linebacker is half the reason the Dolphins don’t own one of those valuable first-round picks in Thursday’s draft. The other, of course, is the league’s punishment of the Dolphins for handling quarterback Tom Brady and coach Sean Payton. Miami once had two 2023 first-round picks.

For Chubb’s first half season with the Dolphins after the big trade deadline move and a five-year, $110 million extension with $63.2 million guaranteed, he feels he hasn’t quite fulfilled the investment of the team.

“I’ve been up and down with it,” Chubb said Tuesday in a web conference call with Dolphins reporters in the second week of the offseason workout. “Understanding a whole new defense, understanding a new set of teammates, I feel like I did well.

“I certainly held myself to a higher standard. I wanted to come in and be that guy that got 10 sacks in a half season and stuff like that. But not everything works out that way.”

In seven starts, Chubb had 13 tackles, 2 1/2 sacks, a forced fumble and 12 quarterback hits. He added a strip sack in the playoff loss to the Buffalo Bills.

In the first eight games of 2022 with Denver, he had 5 1/2 sacks with 26 tackles. Totaling eight sacks on the season, he was named to the Pro Bowl, his second selection after also finishing third in Defensive Rookie of the Year voting in 2018 for a 12-sack season .

He battled a broken hand and high ankle sprain last year, but he’s not using that as an excuse and knows 2023 is the time to start paying off in a season where the Dolphins look to move on, eliminating a playoff spot from last year.

“I look back on all of that as fuel for this season,” he said. “They brought me here for a reason and I just have to make sure I live up to that reason.

“Just finishing with a playoff spot, that’s not the goal. This is not the standard. … “This team and this organization has so much in front of us that we’re definitely using as fuel.”

And it doesn’t necessarily take a load to come with big sack numbers, given what the Dolphins did to bring him in.

“It’s not a burden. I feel like it’s my job,” Chubb said, adding that the impact can also come from drawing extra attention and opening up holes for other rushers.

What may be refreshing for Chubb, after experiencing such a lack of familiarity with his surroundings in the second half of last season, is that he is now reunited with Vic Fangio, his coach for three seasons with the Broncos. The coveted defensive mind is now Miami’s defensive coordinator.

“This is one of my favorite coaches I’ve been in the room with,” Chubb said. “He expects so much from his players and he will keep it straight with you.

“You need someone to be with you a little bit, to hold you to that standard that you hold yourself to. That’s what he’s going to do, and I’m excited about that.”

Fangio’s defense will feature more coverage on the backside, which in turn could help defensive backs attack passes in the air with an eye on the quarterback while giving passes more time to get to the quarterback.

“It’s really meant for the outside linebackers to set the tone, set everything up, set the dominance, whether it’s the tight ends or the tackles,” Chubb said of the scheme. “Let’s get after the quarterback as much as we can. And when that group does that, it makes everyone else’s job easier.”

Chubb is also reunited former Broncos teammate in fellow speedster Malik Reedwho can work in a rotation with Andrew Van Ginkel behind Chubb and 2021 first-round pick Jaelan Phillips.

“That’s my guy,” Chubb said. “One of the smartest players in football, one of the hardest-working, talented — just, everything he brings to the field, I’m excited to have that energy in the gym.”

Chubb admitted it was difficult to step into a new situation in the middle of the season and be an immediate leader when he’s just trying to remember people’s names. He’s ready to take the next step with a full offseason in Miami Gardens.

“My main thing is to be the person that Denver picked up and Miami decided, ‘Yeah, we need that guy on our team,'” he said. “This is my leadership. That’s my intensity. This is my style of play. So I have to get back to it.”

The Dolphins restructured Chubb’s contract this offseason, clearing $14 million in cap space by converting base salary into proportional bonuses. That, in part, allowed Miami to trade for Rams star cornerback Jalen Ramsey and free agent acquisitions like inside linebacker David Long Jr.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *