The Miami Dolphins have made their draft picks. There were 7 players taken, who will take their talents to South Beach.
Were these good picks? Let’s take a look at the players drafted by head coach Brian Flores and general manager Chris Grier.
6th Overall: Jaylen Waddle (Wide Receiver- Alabama)
After the first four picks, it was widely expected that Roger Goodell would read out either offensive lineman Penei Sewell or wide receiver Ja’Marr Chase as the Cincinnati Bengals’ fifth overall pick.
The latter was the player taken by Cincinnati, meaning that the top wideout in the draft was gone. This left Dolphins fans wondering who they will take at number six, with some talk of them trading down after Kyle Pitts and Chase were taken.
Sewell, Waddle, and DeVonta Smith were the three players seen as the most likely to be called, with Waddle the player chosen.
This reunites him with his former quarterback Tua Tagovailoa as they look to continue the relationship they built in Alabama.
Is this a good pick? It is no secret that most Dolphins fans wanted Chase over Waddle, but there has been talk on Good Morning Football that Waddle was Miami’s number one receiver.
— GMFB (@gmfb) April 30, 2021
When a franchise has a guy they believe in, this can be a big factor towards the player succeeding in the NFL.
Waddle recorded four touchdowns and 591 yards during the six games he played in the 2020 season. This is an average of 98.5 yards per game.
With a gain of 15 or more yards in 36% of his career targets, this stands as the most in college football since 2018. He can also be a great special teams player, with a 19.3-yard career punt return average along with two touchdowns.
18th Overall: Jaelan Phillips (Defensive End- Miami)
It says a lot about how much the Dolphins wanted Phillips judging by how quickly their pick was in.
Phillips was seen as one of the top edge rusher prospects in the draft, despite his injury concerns.
In just 20 total college games, Phillips recorded 23.5 tackles for loss, 12.5 sacks, and 86 total tackles.
Daniel Jeremiah quoted Phillips as being an “explosive and bendy edge rusher.”
Despite the excellent defensive displays in 2020 that saw the Dolphins finish as the team with the eleventh most sacks (41), the roster is missing a true edge rusher to go alongside Emmanuel Ogbah. Now we have seen the Dolphins draft Phillips; this gives Miami two great edge rushers.
Provided he can stay healthy, Phillips has the potential to be one of the best defensive ends in the league.
36th Overall: Jevon Holland (Safety- Oregon)
The secondary is an area where the Dolphins have plenty of talent, particularly the cornerback position.
Daniel Jeremiah sees Holland as a starter with “excellent ball awareness and dependable hands.”
Holland didn’t play in 2020, but he recorded 108 total tackles, one defensive touchdown, 10 passes deflected, and 9 interceptions during his two college seasons.
His versatility will be of big use in this Miami Dolphins secondary. During his sophomore season, he spent time as a nickel corner. He was named the best nickel corner in the country.
Byron Jones, who announced the Hunter Long pick, will be the starting cornerback alongside last season’s interception leader Xavien Howard. Holland has shown that he can fill in should one of these two go down with an injury.
42nd Overall: Liam Eichenberg (Offensive Tackle- Notre Dame)
Mel Kiper is quoted as saying Eichenberg “has great feet and packs a punch in the run game.”
From PFF: Liam Eichenberg played through a game last year with a swollen-shut eye. He started every game at LT for Notre Dame the last three years (38 game) and hasn't allowed a sack since 2018.
"Eichenberg provides one of the higher floors in the class."
— Travis Wingfield (@WingfieldNFL) May 1, 2021
It is yet to be seen whether linemen Austin Jackson and Robert Hunt will succeed in the NFL. We will most likely see both Eichenberg and Jackson start for Miami, with one of the two moving to right tackle.
81st Overall: Hunter Long (Tight End- Boston College)
With 685 yards and 5 touchdowns in 2020, Long can be used as either someone to come in to give Gesicki some rest or if Miami uses both tight ends in 12 personnel.
We have learned one thing since he became head coach, Brian Flores, and the process should be trusted.
231: Larnel Coleman (Offensive Lineman-Umass)
Coming in at 6”6 and over 300 pounds, Coleman’s long arms have been noted by many draft experts, notably Lance Zierlein.
He has experience playing in both the left and right tackle positions and was a team captain in college.
Larnel Coleman (@Ace_killa74) won every rep I watched on film. Great footwork from his basketball days, as well as his length, make it very difficult for edge defenders to get around him. A lot of room to grow too. #NFLDraft #DraftTwitter pic.twitter.com/UxAoqznjuR
— Jack Borowsky (@Jack_Borowsky) June 15, 2020
Coleman is unlikely to be a starter for the Dolphins but can provide some depth.
244: Gerrid Doaks (Running Back- Cincinnati)
Many Dolphins fans wanted a running back in the draft. Doaks becomes the third running back in as many years to be drafted by the Dolphins in the seventh round.
With a 5”11 and 288-pound physique, Doaks recorded 1,712 rushing yards and 14 rushing touchdowns during his 3 years in college with Cincinnati.
In September 2020, Doaks scored four touchdowns in Cincinnati’s 55-20 win over Austin Peay.
He will ensure Miami has a competitive running back room, with Myles Gaskin likely to be the lead back ahead of Doaks and Salvon Ahmed.
Overall, the Dolphins can be happy with their draft. Colin Cowherd has stated that they have “won the draft.”
The @MiamiDolphins are winning this draft. Easily.
— Colin Cowherd (@ColinCowherd) May 1, 2021
Flores and Grier have addressed most positions of need, and with the pick of Jaelan Phillips, this has the potential to be one of the steals of the draft.