Koa Misi making his mark for Dolphins

The Miami Dolphins went into the season with a big question mark at outside linebacker.

Joey Porter and Jason Taylor departed, leaving the Dolphins with a raw pass-rusher in his second NFL season and a rookie.

Would Cameron Wake and Koa Misi be good enough to generate pressure?

So far, they have made an impact. Wake leads the Dolphins with 6.5 sacks and 15 quarterback hits. Misi is second with 3.5 sacks, putting him on pace to break Lorenzo Bromell's club record of eight rookie sacks. Misi also is second with six quarterback hits.

Misi ranks second among all rookies in sacks, one behind Ndamukong Suh. Misi has been in on a sack in each of his past three games.

"Having a young guy out there who's hungry and eager every time they get on the field," Wake said, "kind of reminds me of myself last year, trying to get out there and just have a chance to make plays. He's definitely doing well for himself, and I obviously expect much more in the future."

The Dolphins have 17 sacks, tied for ninth in the league. But they rank third in sacks per pass play.

Dolphins coach Tony Sparano noted before Sunday's game against the Pittsburgh Steelers that Wake and Misi continue to evolve into complete outside linebackers.

"These two young players [Wake and Misi] are getting better and better each week," Sparano said. "Each week they're doing something better on film, not only in the pass-rush game, and that's where sometimes people think they have to judge these outside linebackers."

Wake is fourth on the team with 20 tackles, and nine of them have been for losses. Misi has 14 tackles and two fumble recoveries, most on the team and tied for second in the NFL.