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5 TARGETS FOR THE DRAFT
By: Michael Pellegrini – yahoo.com
The Miami Dolphins hold the #12 pick in the first round of the 2013 NFL Draft. The team has 11 draft picks (including 5 in the first 3 rounds) in all. After addressing the wide receiver position this offseason, the biggest positional needs for the Dolphins now are cornerback, offensive tackle and pass rusher. Since, as mentioned, the team has 5 picks in the first 3 rounds, it is conceivable that the Dolphins could trade up from #12 if they fall in love with a prospect. With all of that said, here are 5 targets for the Dolphins in order of needs.
The Dolphins inked free agent cornerback Brent Grimes to a one-year deal the other day. The move could turn out to be a steal if Grimes comes back healthy from his ACL injury. Even so, the Dolphins need to add help at corner. Most mock drafts have the Dolphins taking FloridaState cornerback Xavier Rhodes with their first round pick. As of right now, that looks like it will be the pick, considering the fact that the secondary is the team’s biggest weakness and that he is the second best cornerback in the draft, behind Alabama’s Dee Milliner. Milliner will likely go in the top ten. There is a chance that a team could draft Rhodes ahead of Miami which would lead the team to look to other alternatives since I do not think they would take another cornerback at #12.
2. Offensive Tackle
This year’s NFL Draft seems to be loaded with tackles. That is a good sign for the Dolphins considering they have a hole at one of the tackle spots after losing Jake Long to free agency. The Dolphins may take care of that need by addressing it in free agency before the draft, though. Right tackle Eric Winston is still available and is apparently interested in signing with the team. If they signed Winston, it would allow the Dolphins to shift Jonathan Martin to left tackle. I think it makes the most sense for them to sign a veteran like Winston and then draft his potential successor, such as Oregon’s Kyle Long, in a later round.
3. Pass Rusher
The Miami Dolphins have not seemed to be too interested in any of the available veteran pass rushers, despite each player’s thin market. This leads me to believe that they are looking to draft a pass rusher this year. Defensive end Cameron Wake needs help on the other side as he is constantly double teamed. There should be plenty of options for the Dolphins at #12, including LSU’s Barkevious Mingo.
The Dolphins brought back incumbent starter Chris Clemons on a one-year deal which signals that they would like to upgrade at safety opposite Reshad Jones, who had a breakout year in 2012. Clemons is a solid player but the Dolphins lack playmakers in the secondary which is why they should take a look at drafting a safety in the first few rounds. I do not think that any of the safeties are worth being drafted at #12 but they could be able to draft one like Florida’s Matt Elam in the second round.
5. Tight End
The Dolphins already signed Dustin Keller to a one-year deal near the start of free agency but, as the New England Patriots have shown, multiple tight ends are vital in the NFL now. Therefore, Notre Dame’s Tyler Eifert could be an option for the Dolphins. It is more likely that they would trade down for him, though.
The bottom line is simple: the Miami Dolphins need to hit with their #12 pick. They need a player that can start right away and make a difference. Ideally, that player would be at a skill position. In the end, FloridaState cornerback Xavier Rhodes looks like he is their guy.
Everyone knows the Chiefen loves him some Rhodes, so here’s one with Trufant.
Miami Dolphins GM Jeff Ireland has channeled his inner Dan Snyder this off-season, throwing gobs of cash at big-name free agents, scheduling visits with seemingly every notable player available, and making it known that the Dolphins are ready to seriously contend behind the second-year duo of head coach Joe Philbin and quarterback Ryan Tannehill.
They did, however, lose cornerback Sean Smith on the open market, and could be on the lookout for a replacement early in the 2013 NFL Draft.
Desmond Trufant, Washington
|Kevin Nogle: “With all of their free agency moves, the Dolphins have opened this spot to just about any pick. Guys like Jonathan Cooper, Lane Johnson and Sheldon Richardson are all worthy of looks here, but I think this comes down to West Virginia wide receiver Tavon Austin or Trufant. I would not be surprised at all for Miami to take Austin, which would bring a ton of speed to an offense that has sorely missed it the past few years. However, with Mike Wallace, Brian Hartline, Davone Bess and Brandon Gibson, the wide receiver position is starting to back up. Rumors that the team could be looking to trade Bess would open the pick back up to Austin, but for now, I don’t see it – even if he is the pick I, personally, would like the most.”Instead, I think Miami looks to shore up their biggest need remaining, cornerback. With Dee Milliner off the board, Trufant and FloridaState’s Xavier Rhodes are the best corners available. I don’t think the Dolphins will look at Rhodes, as he’s not a fit for the system they are trying to build, especially after Sean Smith struggled. Rhodes appears best in a press coverage type of defense, while Trufant is at home in man-to-man or zone schemes. Trufant’s instincts and coverage ability will be exactly what the Dolphins want. He holds his own against bigger wide receivers, and his closing speed will help with the quicker wide receivers. He is not afraid of contact and will be an asset in run defense as well as in coverage, something that is important to the Dolphins.|
“Don’t be surprised if the Dolphins throw the first curveball of the draft, especially after the free agency period we have seen, but most likely, Trufant tops Austin come April.” Here’s our own Dan Kadar to break down the pick:
I’m not quite as confident the Dolphins will be looking at a wide receiver after giving big money to Mike Wallace and re-signing Brian Hartline. For a team that hasn’t made the playoffs since 2008, investing multiple times at the same position in one offseason would be unwise. In our scenario, the best pick is probably Lane Johnson. While Jonathan Martin could move to the left side, the whole line could be bolstered by a player of Johnson’s caliber. It’s much like Chargers pick. The offensive tackle group drops off after Johnson. The cornerback class is deep this year. There’s going to be a few good ones to choose from when Miami comes up in the second round. That’s the third and final pick today, so we’ll see y’all bright and early Wednesday morning for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and pick No. 13.
Top 5 Players Remaining
|5||Sheldon Richardson *||DT||Missouri||6’3″||294|
|11||Bjoern Werner *||DE||FloridaState||6’3″||266|
|12||Jonathan Cooper||OG||North Carolina||6’2″||311|
2013 SB Nation NFL Writers’ Mock Draft Results
|1||Kansas City Chiefs||Luke Joeckel||OT||Texas A&M|
|2||Jacksonville Jaguars||Geno Smith||QB||West Virginia|
|3||Oakland Raiders||Sharrif Floyd||DT||Florida|
|4||Philadelphia Eagles||Eric Fisher||OT||Central Michigan|
|5||Detroit Lions||Ezekiel Ansah||DE||BYU|
|6||Cleveland Browns||Dion Jordan||OLB||Oregon|
|7||Arizona Cardinals||Barkevious Mingo||OLB||LSU|
|8||Buffalo Bills||Jarvis Jones||OLB||Georgia|
|9||New York Jets||Chance Warmack||OG||Alabama|
|10||Tennessee Titans||Dee Milliner||CB||Alabama|
|11||San Diego Chargers||Star Lotulelei||DT||Utah|
|12||Miami Dolphins||Desmond Trufant||CB||Washington|
Once again, why this site is the world’s leading braintrust in everything regarding your Miami Dolphins. Plus, we have humor… and titties.