Every week, Miami Dolphins defensive end Emmanuel Ogbah creates a big play that either creates a turnover or earns a sack. Every. Week.
In his fifth NFL season after being selected No. 32 overall by the Cleveland Browns in 2016, Ogbah is living up to his potential in Miami. The impending free agent, who spent last season with Kansas City after three in Cleveland, hopes to stick with Brian Flores’ club.
“I’m tired of moving,” Ogbah said this week, via the Palm Beach Post. “I don’t want to move no more. So God willing, if it be Miami, then I’ll be thankful for it. I’ll be happy for it.”
Added Ogbah: “Every time you get drafted by a team, you want that team to be your home. You want to stay with that team for life. But everything happens for a reason. It’s just been a journey. I’ve had my ups and downs.”
The former first-round pick is currently on a big up. His career-high 8.0 sacks are tied for fourth overall in the NFL through nine games (Myles Garrett, 9.5; T.J. Watt, 9.0; Aaron Donald, 9.0; Za’Darius Smith, 8.0).
Ogbah has at least one sack in six consecutive games, the longest active streak in the NFL. He also has .5 or more sacks in eight straight games, the longest active streak as well.
Flores is usually tight-lipped with public praise but was open about what Ogbah brings to his defense.
“He’s got versatility,” Flores said. “He can play inside, outside. He’s tough. He plays against the run. He plays well against the run. He’s fast. He’s got length. He’s smart. He can do a lot. He’s a good teammate. He’s tough. I think I’ve said that already, but he’s a good player.”
Ogbah owns the ability not only to rush the passer, coaches trust him to set the edge against the run, and he can move inside in passing situations.
“Emmanuel has shown the ability to be multiple,” defensive coordinator Josh Boyer said. “We move him around in a lot of spots. He can set the edge. He can handle double-teams. He can rush the passer. He is a diligent worker and he constantly is striving to get better.”
Ogbah leads the Dolphins with 21 pressures and has forced three fumbles, one of which was returned for a touchdown by Andrew Van Ginkel in a Week 8 versus the Rams.
The 27-year-old credited his teammates for his breakout campaign.
“It just takes the play calling, just working together as a defense, and coverages work hand-in-hand,” Ogbah said. “‘X’ (Xavien Howard) is back there, Byron (Jones) is back there holding it down, giving me a second or more just to get back there and just do my thing, and I’m grateful to have those guys back there helping me out.”
The Dolphins’ defense has become a legit unit in Flores’ second season. It can bring pressure with blitzes or sit back in coverage like it did in its Week 10 win over the Chargers.
With a studly secondary led by Jones and Howard, and Ogbah racking up sacks by the week, the Dolphins have one of the few defenses in the NFL that can make the difference down the stretch run of the 2020 season with a playoff spot on the line.
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