Miami Dolphins fourth round draft pick Jamil Douglas has played every position on the offensive line and general manager Dennis Hickey said that was one of the biggest things that drew the team to Douglas in the fourth round of the NFL Draft
“We’re very pleased here in the fourth round to announce the selection of Jamil Douglas, offensive lineman out of Arizona State. Jamil Douglas is a very interesting prospect. A guy that’s had, I believe, around 40 starts. He started at guard his junior year and started at tackle his senior year. He played in the senior bowl and was All-PAC12. A really athletic, versatile offensive lineman that brings toughness, that brings athleticism, the ability to play multiple positions.”
With that type of versatility though, it might seem fair to think that the Dolphins aren’t quite sure where they are going to place him – whether it be at left or right guard, or perhaps even tackle if Branden Albert isn’t ready for the season opener. However, Hickey wasted no time announcing where the team will place him in the lineup.
“For us, we’re going to put him at left guard. That’s where we’re going to put him, but he’s a versatile guy that has played multiple positions. We like a lot of the things he brings to the table. He was, as I share with you, one of the best parts of this, as these guys culminate their dreams and get to the NFL, they get emotional and it’s always touching to watch those guys get emotional and he’s very excited about being a Miami Dolphin and we’re very excited about him being a Miami Dolphin.”
With Douglas in the fold at left guard, Hickey said that it’s going to be watching everyone battle it out for a starting position. While they aren’t ready to pencil him in as the starter, Hickey said he’ll have every opportunity to earn his way into the lineup for the regular season opener.
“Like we tell all of our young players that come in, the number one thing is to come in and compete. The playing time, the role, all those things will be sorted out by our coaches,” he said. “It’s great to add Jamil Douglas. We firmly believe in our philosophy about having competitive environments and guys that we have here are going to compete, guys that we bring in are going to compete, and that’s the beauty of the NFL. Putting them on the practice field, putting them in a preseason game and go compete for jobs.”
The selection of Douglas doesn’t come without questions, though. In his freshman year, Douglas got into legal trouble after he was accused of breaking in and stealing. However, Hickey noted that the situation has been sorted out since that time.
“We met with him at the Senior Bowl, and it was reduced to trespassing. We had good conversations with him as well as our conversations with the research that we did with the staff at Arizona State. He was a captain, again Academic All-PAC12, all the research that we did on him, we felt comfortable about selecting him and we’re glad to bring him on to the Miami Dolphins family.”
What’s Hickey and the rest of the front office and coaching staff looking forward to the most from Douglas? His athleticism and movement along with his ability to climb to the second level while adjusting well on his blocks. If he can maintain that type of consistency and show it all the time, he should have no trouble starting in the first week of the season.
This story was written by Matthew Cannata. Follow him on Twitter: @PhinManiacs