are still 8 weeks away from the NFL draft. And I’ve seen what, maybe 347 mock
drafts? This week is the NFL combine. Nice little diversion for football
starved fans. And a week for the NFL execs and coaches to dot their “I’s” and
cross their “T’s” with potential future draft picks. Some call the combine a
meat market. The Sentinels Omar Kelly I think gave it the perfect name,
“the Underwear Olympics.” Whatever you call the NFL combine or the
upcoming draft it is a very real opportunity for teams without hope, to get
hope for the 2018 season.
And that brings
us to the Miami Dolphins. You know, the team that always makes Darius Rucker
cry. And most Dolfans as well. This week the Dolphins will be well represented
in Indianapolis for the combine. They will have sit down conversations with
Jarvis Landry and his agent to try and work out a landing spot for him when he
is traded. And yes that is going to happen. There will be lots of conversations
this week to line up all the dominoes for the upcoming NFL draft on April 26th.
I’ve been
giving the Phins situation with Landry and the draft and the team needs a lot
of thought. As have many other draft experts most of whom are a lot smarter
than me. But hey, if everyone else and their mother are mocking the 2018 draft…
why can’t I? So here is mock draft # 348. Or at least I’ll tell you what the
Dolphins should do with their early picks and see what happens.
First, as I
mentioned, the Dolphins will trade Jarvis Landry. I believe the most sound
trade partner would be San Francisco. They have tons of money to spend and need
more toys for their new young QB Jimmy G. Now here is where it gets interesting
and where the dominoes start to fall. This trade is conditional on Miami and
San Fran trading draft positions in the first rd. Miami moves to #9, and the
49’ers move to #11. San Francisco moves down 2 slots and gets one of the best
slot receivers in the business. If the Niners want more candy, I wouldn’t be
against trading our 3rd rd pick for their 4th rd pick to sweeten the pie. What
I’m saying is, it’s doable and we move up to 9th and get rid of the Landry
contract obligation.
At # 9 our
options and odds of drafting a “great” player improve dramatically.
These are the players the Dolphins want to be focusing on at #9:
1) Roquan
Smith, arguably the best LB to enter the NFL draft since Luke Kuechly. Smith is
a heat seeking missile with tremendous speed, high football IQ, and he played
against the best competition in the Country.
2) Quenton
Nelson, OG, Notre Dame, yes I know… how do you draft a guard this high? When
he is by far, the best O-Lineman in the draft. And when the Dolphins have a
tremendous need at that position.
3) Minkah
Fitzpatrick, CB/S, Alabama … Perhaps THE best player, regardless of position
in this year’s draft. (Close race between Barkley, Fitzpatrick, and Smith).
Fitzpatrick probably will end up a Safety in the NFL eventually. But if he’s
there for the Dolphins he can most certainly play CB, or nickel for a year. He
is a tremendous DB at any position. Coached by the best DB coach currently in
the college ranks (hurts me to even say that), Nick Saban.
4) QB…at #9
almost a guarantee one of the top 4 will be there. If the Dolphins brain trust,
is that an Oxymoron, strongly believe in the one who will be there for them,
then I pray they don’t regret passing him up at 9.
5) Bradley
Chubb, DE, N.C. State… Excellent edge rushers who are also solid against the
run are a premium commodity in the NFL. So Chubb probably won’t even get to #9.
That said, I do not think if Joey Bosa or Myles Garrett were in this year’s
draft, that Chubb would be in the top 10 picks of rd one. But as it stands he
will probably be in the top 5 selections in 2018. If for some reason he falls
to #9. Look for the Dolphins to scoop him up.
There you have
it. It is extremely unlikely that neither Smith, Nelson, Fitzpatrick nor Chubb,
will be available for the Dolphins at #11. As these men, barring injury, are
sure fire All-Pro potential type football players. There is an outside chance
that one of the QB’s falls to #11. But if the Phins really want one this early,
do NOT take that chance.
Personally I
take Roquan Smith if he’s there. Imagine pairing him with a healthy Raekwon
McMillan. And now you start to see a young nasty looking Dolphins defense.
The main reason
for my wanting to move up to #9, is for Smith. As Oakland at #10, in every mock
draft I’ve seen, is selecting Smith at that 10th spot. That produces another
interesting scenario however. What if Oakland is in love with Smith? Heck, the
Dolphins should be more than willing to oblige and trade back to #10 with
Oakland for the #9 spot. If, and only if one of these players, Nelson,
Fitzpatrick, or Chubb are available. And if Oakland throws in their 2nd rd pick
as well. Again if they want extra sweetener, we can throw in one of our extra
4th rounders. Or a 3rd rounder in 2019? Either or.
And with that
2nd rd pick from the Raiders, I’m selecting QB. Either Lamar Jackson or Mason
Rudolph. And with the Dolphins own 2nd rounder I’m selecting RB’s Derrius
Guice, Sony Michel, or Kerryon Johnson in that order, whoever is available.
There you have
it. So simple right. So easy even a caveman can do it. Or maybe I am giving
Tannenbaum too much credit. Let’s see where the dominoes fall.
Island Canes