Former Tigers welcome Stephone Anthony to Miami
|Thursday, September 21, 2017 2:03 PM- -|
Stephone Anthony begins a fresh start this week with a team of familiar faces.
The former Clemson linebacker was traded from the New Orleans Saints to the Miami Dolphins for a 2018 NFL draft pick, joining three former Tigers on the defensive side of the ball.
Anthony played with two of them, in rookie cornerback Cordrea Tankersley and sixth-year defensive end Andre Branch. Former Clemson defensive back Byron Maxwell and the rest of Tigers gave Dolphins fans a scouting report on what Anthony brings to the team.
“I think you’re going to have a guy that’s smart, a guy that’s going to understand the grind, he’s going to bring it every day,” Maxwell told reporters. “That’s the most important thing. And you only get better if you bring it every day. And more importantly he’s going to be able to accept criticism and accept challenges and try to meet it and rise to it. Dabo (Swinney) does a real good job of that.”
“He definitely plays violent,” Tankersley said. “Off the field, humble, respectful, on the field he’s just a dog. He just wants to be perfect every play. Even when he makes mistakes, it’s at 100 percent full-speed.”
“He is very, very willing to learn,” said Branch. “Student of the game. As athletic as they come. He always wants to learn more. So he’s going to fit right in here.”
Anthony said he heard from each of the group shortly after the trade.
“All three of them texted me,” Anthony said. “‘Welcome, family. Welcome home.’ It’s all love.”
Anthony was a Saints’ first-round pick in 2015, where he posted 70 solo tackles as a rookie. Last season Anthony was limited due to hamstring and knee injuries and a high ankle sprain had the former first-team All-ACC defender inactive through two games in 2017.
Healthy now, he’s eager to prove he can make an impact in south Florida.
“This is about me and my new opportunity,” Anthony told the Palm Beach Post. “I’m excited. What those guys (New Orleans) have going on, it’s now their problem…You go from New Orleans to Miami in the blink of an eye, so the challenge for me is going to be to get in the playbook and get going and see where this thing goes.”
The Dolphins play on the road versus the New York Jets Sunday at 1 p.m.