Draft season has officially gotten underway, with the last underclassmen making their decisions about whether or not to enter the draft. Players will start preparing for the pre-draft routine; the Senior Bowl, Pro Days, and the Scouting Combine.
There are a number of holes that Miami needs to address this off season. Although it’s still early, this is a brief look into one particular direction that the Dolphins may go. With this mock draft, I had in mind that Jake Long would not be re-signed, and that the Dolphins will have signed one of Dwayne Bowe, Mike Wallace, or Greg Jennings.
MDD Staff Writer: Garrett Baker
1st Round (12th overall)-Dion Jordan, DE, Oregon
Jared Odrick isn’t the answer at defensive end, especially not in Miami’s 4-3 scheme. Olivier Vernon showed some potential, but as more of a situational guy, and also more as an outside linebacker than an end. Jordan is arguably the most versatile defensive prospect in this draft, standing at roughly 6’7″ but possessing the athleticism and quickness to line up anywhere on the field. Oregon sometimes played him in coverage against the slot receiver, and he also played some time at linebacker. His versatility would give Miami that edge which it so desperately needs.
2nd Round (42nd overall)-Zach Ertz, TE, Stanford
Here’s where Miami gets some help for Ryan Tannehill. Ertz is a big body with soft hands and a lot of experience, which means he should be able to contribute right away. He isn’t on the level of Notre Dame’s Tyler Eifert, but there’s little chance that Eifert is still here at this slot. Ertz would bring a whole new dynamic to Miami’s offense.
2nd Round (56th overall)-D.J. Fluker, OT, Alabama
Fluker has been phenomenal for Alabama, who had arguably the best offensive line in the country this year. He would come in and compete with Jonathan Martin, as both tackles would be able to play either the right or left side, which would be a great problem for Miami to have.
3rd Round (77th overall)-Stedman Bailey, WR, West Virginia
Even if Miami signs a big free agent receiver, they could still use some depth at the position. Bailey is an under appreciated talent from West Virginia who doesn’t stand out in any way except for his production. He isn’t overly big or fast, but uses great body control, deception, and reliable hands to get open and pull in passes.
3rd Round (82nd overall)-Desmond Trufant, CB, Washington
Even with Richard Marshall healthy, Miami’s cornerback corps needs help. Trufant isn’t a dynamic, shut down talent, but he has the upside to be a very good No. 2 corner who could push Sean Smith for the top spot.
4th Round-Jake Knott, OLB, Iowa State
Knott in’t that well known right now, but I think his draft stock could rise in coming months. He’s an athletic, hard working, tough kid who will work immediately to crack the rotation. Best-case scenario is that he pushes Koa Misi for his starting spot; at worst, he becomes a better backup than Jason Trusnik.
5th Round-Alvin Bailey, OG, Arkansas
Bailey isn’t in the top echelon of guards, which includes Chance Warmack, Larry Warford, Johnathan Cooper, and Barrett Jones, but he would be a great insurance policy if Richie Incognito or John Jerry went down with an injury.
7th Round-Johnathan Franklin, RB, UCLA
It seems as if late-round running backs are making more of an impact in the NFL than ever before. While the 7th round may be a little late, Franklin had a very productive senior season and there’s no reason to believe he couldn’t follow in the footsteps of Daryl Richardson or Alfred Morris.
7th Round-Marcus Davis, WR, Virginia Tech
Davis is an uber-talented receiver who just hasn’t been able to pull everything together yet in college. Some team may become enamored with his physical ability and take him earlier than this, but there’s a decent chance he’s still around in the last round, where Miami would be smart to give him a shot.