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 »This Week in History
Miami Dolphins
INSIDE SLANT

  Inside Slant | Notes, Quotes | Strategy and Personnel | Player Wire

  Ja'Wuan James is staying at right tackle for Miami, which means first-round pick Laremy Tunsil will likely play guard.

That's the offshoot of Tuesday's first day of the three-day OTA (Organized Team Activities) that concludes Thursday.

"That's the plan right now," James said Tuesday, "but like I said the day I got here, I'm trying to do what I can to win, whatever they want me to do."

James, the Dolphins' 2014 first-round pick, said he was happy to have Tunsil join the team even though many originally speculated Tunsil would play right tackle and James would play guard.

"It's always exciting seeing somebody get drafted," James said, "and then it being a lineman and a guy coming in your room that can help us, I was excited and I think everybody in our room is excited just because it's an added guy, added number (that) brings out competition makes our o-line better so I think everybody was collectively happy."

The Dolphins' offensive line, for now, figures to start James at right tackle, Pro Bowl selection Branden Albert at left tackle, Pro Bowl selection Mike Pouncey at center, perhaps Jermon Bushrod at right guard, and Tunsil perhaps at left guard.

James seems impressed by Tunsil.

"One, he's a strong kid, good kid too," James said. "(He's) trying to learn right now. He's under me, asking me questions, BA (Albert), everybody. Just trying to really learn and head in the right direction."

Pouncey, noting the Dolphins now have three of their own first-round picks (himself, James and Tunsil) as well as a high-priced free agent (Albert) on the offensive line, said this "better be" the best offensive line ever put in front of quarterback Ryan Tannehill.

"I agree," James said. "Everybody has another year under their belt and we're working every day.

"We can't see the future right now, but we can work every day toward that future, so we're going to see."

James, who was limited to seven games last season due to a toe injury, said he's healthy and ready to improve on the season and a half of NFL experience he's amassed. And, yes, he said last year was tough due to his injury situation.

"Oh, (it was) definitely a tough process," James said. "That was my first time being hurt in my life throughout my career playing football."

James said he used his time constructively, however.

"I used it to make myself mentally stronger, whether it was in the film room trying to get smarter (at) football (or) trying to learn (with) more X's and O's study because I couldn't be out there on the field," he said. "I was watching extra film (and) working with our O-line coach back then (John Benton) and just doing a lot of stuff that I could do, whether it was in the weight room, whether it was anywhere. (I was) just (doing) anything I could to get better."

And, no, James doesn't find this week's OTA tedious.

"I'm excited," he said, "especially after missing last year. This all feels new and fresh to me and I'm happy to be here."


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