NFL 2013 Miami Dolphins 7 Round Mock
Miami Dolphin GM, Jeff Ireland
A complete 180 degree change in team philosophy has lead to a mismatch. The Miami Dolphins roster in 2012 did not match the new philosophy. This lead to the departure of some high priced talent. This also lead to holes in the roster, money under the cap and 11 picks in this months upcoming NFL Draft. With 5 of those picks in the first round following a productive free agency, team GM Jeff Ireland is in a position to add talent. His stated philosophy has been to get the so called "expensive positions" filled in the draft, and the others filled in free agency. So far, it seems like he's analyzed the draft and found what it was lacking. Ireland seemed to target exactly that in free agency. The strength in this draft is at the line of scrimmage on both sides of the ball. That should allow the Dolphins to get help on the offensive line. They would also like to find a pass rusher to attack the opposing quarterback's left side opposite sack artist Cameron Wake. The draft is also loaded with cornerbacks this year. The Dolphins have added playmaker Brent Grimes, but the position could still use additional talent. 2nd Year head coach Joe Philbin has been praised as a talent evaluator. If that is the case, fans hope it will rub off on Ireland who has been unlucky in past Dolphin drafts — especially outside of the 1st round. The possibilities are many this year. No longer does a 7-9 team have to go through an elongated suffering period to get to an 11 win season and playoff birth. A plummet down to a three win season can happen just as quickly. The team has promised explosion and excitement. The fans won't mind that, if it comes with wins. Let's take a look at one way to approach the draft.
Round 7 / Pick 250 - FS Rashard Hall, Clemson 6'1 / 210 lbs
Rasgard Hall has made big plays for the Clemson Tigers. It’s his lack of speed that has him in the 7th round. Some mocks had him selected in the 6th round. Ultimately, he should be another Kevin Coyle project defensive back. Hopefully he will become another Coyle success story.
Round 7 / Pick 224 - CB Roderick Sweeting, Georgia Tech - 5'11 / 189 lbs
Dolphin defensive coordinator, Kevin Coyle is developing a solid reputation for coaching up DBs. He might be able to turn the selection of the speedy Georgia Tech corner into good value and add depth. There's talk that the team will spend most of its time on defense in nickel packages. If this pick pans out, Rod Sweeting could see some playing time as the season progresses.
Round 7 / Pick 217 - OLB Eric Martin, Nebraska - 6'1 / 237 lbs
Nebraska linebacker Eric Martin is a solid athlete that has the speed and tackling ability to contribute on special teams. He also could be coached up to add depth to the linebacking corp. Martin lacks experience with his hand in the dirt, but that’s not what’s needed from him on this team.
Round 5 / Pick 166 - TE Nick Kasa, Colorado - 6'4 269 lbs
2012 starter Anthony Fasano signed with the Kansas City Chiefs as a free agent. The Dolphins then signed Dustin Keller away from the New York Jets to a one year deal. Keller is more of a pass catcher than blocker. The Dolphins could use a strong run blocker like Kasa at tight end. Kasa is no slouch catching passes either. By the time his rookie season is over, he should be able to provide Miami with options at the TE position, since Keller only has a one year deal.
Round 5 / Pick 146 - OT Brennan Williams, North Carolina - 6'6 / 318 lbs
The Dolphins have Nate Garner and not much else at the right tackle position for 2013. The position is considered a need area. It looks like as of April 5th, the possibilities of signing free agent Eric Winston are reducing. There is even reports that say that Ireland is done spending in free agency. North Carolina Tarheel Brennan Williams lacks ideal experience. He also has minor bad habits out of which he can be coached, but he has the talent to find himself a starter before the end of the 2013 season.
Round 4 / Pick 111 - RB Christine Michael, Texas A&M - 5'10 / 220 lbs
A coaching film centered on technique at the RB position can be made using clips of Texas A&M running back Christine Michael. His cut back style, and the quickness he has to pull it off, make him a perfect fit for the Dolphins. Familiarity with his former coach Mike Sherman, who is now the Dolphins offensive coordinator, doesn’t hurt either. He should share the load with 2nd year tail back Lamar Miller, who showed promise behind then starter Reggie Bush. Bush signed with the Detroit Lions as a free agent.
Round 3 / Pick 82 - C/OT/G Barrett Jones, Alabama 6'4 / 306 lbs
Barrett Jones stepped in and played 3 line positions at one time or another for the Crimson Tide and did not disappoint in any of them. He has played the most games (25) at right guard where he dominated, but has experience at center (14 games) and left tackle (10 games). For a team like the Dolphins, who seem to be doing a slow over haul on their offensive line, Jones is just what the doctor ordered. I project him to push John Jerry on the right side. He can also provide solid depth on the left side behind newly acquired free agent Lance Louis and 2012 starter Richie Incognito.
Round 3 / Pick 77 - DE Margus Hunt, SMU - 6’8 / 277 lbs
The cliff notes on S.M.U. defensive end Margus Hunt is “freak athlete / very raw”. The Dolphins do need to apply pressure opposite Cam Wake, but they haven’t expressed any confirmed urgency to do that at the defensive end position. They plan to blitz their newly acquired, young and fast linebackers Danelle Ellerbe and Phillip Wheeler, while coaching up 2nd year defensive end Olivier Vernon. Former 1st round pick Jared Odrick is the incumbant defensive end who was selected when the team ran the 3-4. In this defense, Odrick is a better fit at defensive tackle. This may sound like a log jam, but you can’t have too many linemen. Hunt’s athleticism and potential are too high to pass on.
Round 2 / Pick 54 - OT Terron Armstead, Arkansas Pine-Bluff - 6’5 / 306lbs - 4.71 40
Super athletic tackle and part time track star Terron Armstead has tremendous upside. His skill set makes him the perfect fit for Miami’s zone blocking scheme. Jonathan Martin is far from a lock as the current left tackle and the departure of Jake Long (who did not fit the system) makes this a need. Armstead has more than the capabilities to fill that need.
Round 2 / Pick 42 - CB Jamar Taylor, Boise State - 5’11 / 192lbs - 4.39 40
The Dolphins signing Brent Grimes gives the Dolphins an upgrade over the flawed departing free agent corner Sean Smith. So now they have Grimes, who is great in the slot and can play zone. They also have Dimitri Patterson, who is an above average man coverage corner who’s forte is jamming the receiver at the line of scrimmage, but can also play zone. There’s the adequate Richard Marshall, but not much more on the team at that position. Jamar Taylor would come in and have a chance to start early if he can push Marshall. Taylor was very productive for a Boise State defense that only allowed 3 passing touch downs in 2012. Darius Slay of Mississippi State is an option here if Taylor is gone.
Round 1 / Pick 12 - WR Tavon Austin, West Virginia - 5’8 / 174lbs - 4.34 40
Tavon Austin totaled 114 receptions for 1,289 yards and 12 touchdowns in 2012. He also had 72 carries for 643 yards and three touchdowns. How can the Miami Dolphins turn down the nightmares he can give opposing defensive coordinators every week? Linebackers will swallow hard and take a deep breath when they see him in motion going from the tail back position to the slot and back. Especially when they see newly acquired WR Mike Wallace to their right. Davonne Bess is the current Dolphin slot receiver. He has been good value considering he was a UDFA out of Hawaii, but he’s slow and 2013 is the final year of his contract. There's been some talk of Ireland trading up or down out of this selection. Up would be a mistake in my opinion. Down would be O.K. depending on the selection. However, if the Dolphins and Martin are there at 12, this should be the pick.