Hope and Concern: RB Lamar Miller

We are officially in the month of July, which means NFL training camps are just around the corner.

The Miami Dolphins enter the 2014 season with a lot of excitement but also a lot of questions. This week ESPN.com’s Dolphins page takes a look at several key players who need to play well this season.

On Tuesday, we take a look at running back Lamar Miller.

Biggest reason for hope: Strong offseason

Miller had perhaps his best offseason as a Dolphin this year. He arrived in terrific shape and ready to compete with big-name free agent Knowshon Moreno. Miller did enough to keep his first-team reps during organized team activities and minicamp. He looks like a better fit in new offensive coordinator Bill Lazor’s scheme this year as opposed to the old offense under Mike Sherman. Now, Miller is the favorite to start at tailback entering training camp. Miller also got an assist from Moreno, who is coming off a career year but didn’t arrive to Miami in the best of shape. Moreno also is dealing with a knee injury that required surgery this summer, but he’s expected to be healthy later this summer.

Biggest reason for concern: Durability, not a bell cow

Miller had durability issues in college at the University of Miami. So far, Miller has been fine during his first two NFL seasons. But there are questions about whether Miller can be a feature tailback who takes the majority of the carries. Miller only increased those concerns in his first full year as a starter when he only rushed for 709 yards and two touchdowns. Miami’s coaching staff only gave Miller more than 20 carries once in 16 games. There also were seven games when Miller received fewer than 10 carries. If Miller wins the starting job, he must take advantage of his opportunities. The Dolphins will most likely use a tailback by committee under this scenario.