Players could be evaluated with ‘Wildcat’ in mind

(Ben Liebenberg / NFL.com)

(Ben Liebenberg / NFL.com)

The single wing, or Wildcat formation, became all the rage in Week 3 last season in New England, when the Dolphins and head coach Tony Sparano unveiled the latest version of the old-school formation on the NFL level. The formation had been tried in the past, but not to the success that the Dolphins had with it against the Patriots in a 38-13 victory. Other teams soon followed Miami’s lead, but is the formation here to stay?

A true test of the staying power of the Wildcat formation — and its potential long-term impact on the league — might come to light as teams evaluate talent during the offseason. It was suggested to Sparano on Thursday that teams might evaluate some players at the combine and other workouts on their ability to be a piece of a Wildcat package.

“I’m sure of that,” Sparano said. “I’m sure there are some people who are looking at those pieces right now. I know that as the season went on, more teams tried it. I don’t know how committed other teams are, one way or another, to it. There’s a lot of those types of players out there — potential Wildcat guys.”

Sparano noted that the Wildcat was a very small piece to the Dolphins’ offensive puzzle, but that the team remains committed to the concept. He alluded to the idea that the Dolphins didn’t unveil their total Wildcat package during the season and that they’ll re-evaluate how to make it even more effective.

“I think our players like it. I think our coaches feel like there are some advantages there,” Sparano said. “This gives us the chance this offseason to be able to push the envelope a little bit more.”

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