Randy Starks was just a kid, but he was a kid the Titans thought had tremendous upside when they drafted him out of Maryland in the third round, 71st overall in 2004.
They miscalculated his potential to mature and were shocked when, after four years and with no interest in bringing him back, Miami gave him a monster free-agent contract.
In Tennessee after a somewhat promising rookie year, Starks’s interest seemed to wane. I felt there were times he cared as little about playing hard or well as much as any Titan who got consistent playing time I could remember.
Sunday, he’ll be back at LP Field as an effective piece of the Dolphins 3-4 defensive line.
Starks has started every game at right end this season, recording as many sacks as Jason Taylor (six) and 46 tackles, which rank fifth on the team.
“ I know the reasons for his inconsistencies here and it looks like he’s got it behind him,” Jeff Fisher aid cryptically. “… I’m really happy to see him playing as well as he’s playing. We drafted him where we drafted him because we thought he had the potential. Sometimes when you change address the time light comes on, you get in a new environment, new atmosphere and you play well. He’s playing very well this year.
Guard Eugene Amano, a late-round piece of the same draft as Starks, will spend a lot of time trying to a guy who’s very popular with Tony Sparano.
“The guy’s done a tremendous job for us,” Miami’s coach said. “Since the day that he’s walked through the door here he’s got better and better. I can honestly say that the guy has continued to improve each week out here, made great strides from last year as a backup player to this year where he became a starter and took over. Really, I think right now he is just playing at an extremely high level.
“His in-season conditioning right now and strength training has been outstanding. The guy’s done a tremendous job in the weight room right now and keeping himself physically sharp. We got his body weight down and I think he’s really done a nice job that way. So, this guy’s just getting better and better and he’s a young player that I think is arrow up all the way.”