Cameron Wake came to the Dolphins in 2009 as a pass-rushing specialist but has developed into an all-around force at defensive end.

He not only can rush the passer, he’s become very good against the run and he also can make plays in pass coverage when called upon.

And there’s still another way Wake has and continues to contribute to the success of the Dolphins _ as a mentor to the young defensive ends on the roster.

“Cameron is outstanding because, one, he’s a guy that doesn’t say a lot all the time and when he says something they really listen,” defensive line coach Kacy Rodgers said. “But they can just watch him by example. This guy comes to work every day; this is a blue-collar worker. This is not a prima donna player you’re talking about. He’s a self-made man, too, and he only got to where he is because of work. So they watch his work ethic, they’ve got a chance to be OK.”

At 31 years old and with four years of NFL experience on his resume, Wake is practically ancient when compared to his defensive end teammates. Along with Wake, the defensive ends on the roster are second-year players Olivier Vernon and Derrick Shelby, and rookies Dion Jordan, Tristan Okpalaugo and Emeka Onyenekwu.

It’s quite the contrast from when Wake first joined the Dolphins as a 27-year-old in 2009 as a 3-4 outside linebacker and his position cohorts included veterans like Jason Taylor and Joey Porter.

With two Pro Bowl selections and 43 sacks in his first four seasons, which ranks fourth in the league during that span, Wake has developed into one of the best defensive ends in the NFL despite being undersized at 6-3, 250 pounds.

He has compensated with a tremendous work ethic and good technical work, making him an ideal teacher for his younger teammates. And Wake has been more than happy to help, even if he can’t help but smile when he thinks of himself as a mentor.

“Already, huh? We’re passing the torch?” Wake said. “You know what? It’s something that I knew was coming. It had already started previously when O.V. came in and we had three rookies in the D-line room and being a veteran, it’s crazy how quick it happens.
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