The Miami Dolphins are 4-4 with a big chance to make a stand on Monday Night Football and shift the focus back onto the field. They take on a weak Tampa Bay team, and a thorough pummeling of the Bucs would put Miami over .500 and help with the media circus.
This Saturday there are a number of huge games in college football which will highlight some major talents who will be playing on Sundays. The Dolphins have a few positions to focus on, and I’ll highlight some intriguing prospects at those positions here.
MDD Assistant Editor: Garrett Baker
Here are five prospects to keep an eye on this Saturday. They all project as first, second, or third round picks in my eyes at this stage of the process. It should come as no surprise now that three of these five are offensive linemen.
Ra’Shede Hageman, DT, Minnesota
Jared Odrick has been very solid this year as a rotational defensive tackle alongside Paul Soliai and Randy Starks. But Soliai and Starks are both free agents this year, and one of them will not be re-signed, pushing Odrick up into a full-time starting role. Enter Hageman, a 6’6″ freak of nature from Minnesota who has been dominating the Big 10 over the past few weeks for Minnesota. Watch him against Penn State this Saturday and you’ll see that he’s incredibly strong and athletic and plays with a mean streak.
Xavier Su’a-Filo, OG, UCLA
Su’a-Filo is a bit of an unknown after leaving UCLA to serve a two-year mormon mission in 2010 and 2011, but he came back to school in 2012 and was a first-team All Pac-12 guard after starting all 13 games at left tackle as a freshman in 2009. He’s only 304 lbs., but he has a strong anchor and great balance which make him effective as a blocker in both pass and run protection. Watch Su’a-Filo in a huge Pac-12 matchup against Arizona and you’ll see how quick the left guard pulls and how good he could be in Miami’s zone-blocking scheme.
Cameron Erving, OT, Florida State
Watch Florida State’s offensive line against Wake Forest tomorrow and you’ll see why Erving has been a major reason for Jameis Winston’s success this year. After switching from right tackle last year to replace 2013 second-round pick Menelik Watson, Erving has stepped in flawlessly on the blindside. He has ideal size at 6’6″, 320 lbs., and is surprisingly quick on his feet although his lower-body strength can be improved, as he’s sometimes susceptible to bull rushes.
Taylor Lewan, OT, Michigan
Lewan was at one point a likely top-five pick, but with a slightly disappointing (but still very good) senior season, along with NFL teams’ need for quarterbacks rising, he may slip down around the 10th overall pick, which is still a possibility for Miami at this point. Lewan is a big, aggressive, strong leader who has been a stalwart on the left side of Michigan’s line for years now. He’d be a strong addition to the Dolphins both on and off the field.
Odell Beckham Jr., WR, LSU
There’s no telling how Brandon Gibson will return from his injury, and Rishard Matthews is a very sub-par replacement. Mike Wallace needs some help but also needs a push, and neither Hartline nor Gibson were spectacular for prolonged stretches. Beckham Jr. is a dynamic playmaker who could be a perfect second-round fit for Miami. He’s only 5’11″, but hes a strong 193 lbs. and has the explosion that could make Miami’s offense faster. He’s also a great kick returner. Alabama and LSU face off tomorrow in one of the premier showdowns of the college football season.