Dolphins' Robert Hunt grows, on and off the field

Joe Schad
Palm Beach Post

MIAMI GARDENS — Dolphins guard Robert Hunt recently celebrated his 25th birthday.

It's probably impossible for Hunt to literally grow any more, as he is 6-foot-6, 327 pounds, eclipsing most things, and people, in the NFL and on earth.

But as a player and a young person, Hunt embraces his growth each day.

Take for example, driving. Hunt revealed Tuesday that he didn't receive his drivers' license until last year, at the age of 24.

"Nobody ever taught me how to drive," Hunt said. "I never learned how to drive.”

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It's well-chronicled that Hunt has overcome extreme financial challenges, growing up in Wiergate, Texas, a tiny town on the Eastern border of the state.

When a reporter noted that in Florida, youngsters often learn to drive at 15 years old, Hunt reminded us that not every family is privileged. 

"Man, those kids are more fortunate than I was," Hunt said. "We didn’t – my pops and mom barely had a car. It is what it is. I had to wait my turn and God blessed me. I’m good now at 25.”

Miami Dolphins guard Robert Hunt walks out onto the field during practice at the NFL football team's training facility, Wednesday, Aug. 4, 2021, in Miami Gardens, Fla. (AP Photo/Wilfredo Lee)

Hunt, who has become more relaxed and open in interactions with the media since his rookie season in 2020, gave a shout out to some people who have supported him.

Specifically, Hunt said Dolphins director of team security Drew Brooks helped him obtain the license. At Louisiana-Lafayette, Hunt said he'd catch a ride from teammates.

"My boy Rico," Hunt said. "Shout out Rico! Make sure Rico Robinson sees this. Tweet him on Instagram or something. Rico Robinson was my roommate."

On Tuesday, Dolphins linebacker Sam Eguaveon was told about how Hunt had started driving only last year.

"I do always see him in the parking lot always waiting on a ride, so I don’t know," Eguaveon quipped. "Maybe he doesn’t know how to drive. I’m not giving him a ride. I’m not about to get no flat tire."

After a strong finish to his rookie season at right tackle, the Dolphins moved Hunt to right guard before this season. Many scouts and coaches felt entering Hunt's draft that he had Pro Bowl potential as a guard.

Hunt, a former second rounder, may be Miami's most talented offensive lineman. He is strong and powerful and moves fairly well for his size.

"Fully comfortable, I wouldn’t say that," Hunt said about guard. "But getting the hang of it, you could say that. From going out to in, it takes a little work. I think I’m doing good with it. I think I’m on pace to continue to get better. Right now I’m still a little raw and still working on some things, some technical things."

Hunt has the potential to be a dominant, road-grading mauler.

"I enjoy it," Hunt said. "I think I’m fairly decent at run blocking. It’s definitely a bang-bang type of game in there."

Hunt has been mentored, in part, by veteran right tackle Jesse Davis, who has also played guard. Davis and his wife recently had a baby.

Has Hunt offered to babysit?

"No, I have not," Hunt said. "I got to (expletive) babysit myself."

Laughter ensued. Hunt is the potential to be a monster on the field. But like many NFL offensive linemen, he seems a bit of a gentle giant off of it.

So how's the South Florida driving experience going, anyway?

"I’m glad I learned here because these – it’s tough down here man," Hunt said. "It’s tough down here. I’m glad I learned here because if I could drive here, I can drive anywhere."