In the 2018 NFL Draft, the Miami Dolphins selected former Alabama standout Minkah Fitzpatrick as the 14th overall selection, hoping to boost its secondary.
Add another Fitzpatrick to the roster.
Two days after trading Ryan Tannehill to the Tennessee Titans, the Dolphins signed journeyman quarterback, Ryan Fitzpatrick, to a two-year, $11 million deal, with incentives that can raise his total contract between $17-20 million. Prior to the Fitzpatrick signing, Miami reportedly met with former Louisville product, Teddy Bridgewater, a Miami native. Bridgwater decided to re-sign with the New Orleans Saints, nonetheless.
Fitzpatrick opened the 2018 season as the Tampa Bay Buccaneers’ starting quarterback, with Jameis Winston suspended due to violating the league’s personal-conduct policy. Fitzpatrick wound up starting seven of sixteen games, producing two wins, seventeen touchdowns and twelve interceptions. Tannehill, whom Miami acquired in the 2012 NFL Draft, was dealt to Tennessee, ending a seven-year stretch with the Dolphins, counting the entire 2017 season Tannehill was inactive.
Miami seemingly has their eyes locked on the 2020 NFL Draft and its quarterback class, a class that includes Tua Tagovailoa, Justin Herbert, Jake Fromm, Jacob Eason and Shea Patterson. If Miami’s goal is to acquire a franchise-changing quarterback in 2020, winning football games in 2019 will not be on the top of the list.
Fitzpatrick’s overall career record is 50-75-1, having started for the Buffalo Bills, New York Jets, Tennessee Titans, Houston Texans, Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Cincinnati Bengals and St. Louis Rams.
This story was written by Brandon Liguori. Follow him on Twitter: @BrandonRLiguori
“To stay or not to stay, that is the question.”
A Jimmy Johnson figure appeared in my dream and wouldn’t stop talking about this top-secret Draft Pick Value Chart he made. Then we popped a beer and caught one heck of a Sailfish! Catch and Release of course, we aren’t a-holes.
Then I woke up and realized I just left the NFL Network on when I passed out. But the question remains.
Do the Dolphins trade up, down or stay?
Well, since I have zero influence on the top brass I’m going to assume they won’t be trading up or down and they stay put. Which for the purpose of this article I’m actually quite excited about. There is some great depth that should fall just about perfectly to Miami that will provide a Pro Bowl upside and fill a need. That’s a combination I can get behind.
Every year there is a QB feeding frenzy and this year won’t be different. It’s highly probable that three guys get over drafted much like the year the Dolphins selected Ryan Tannehill. Remember Brandon Weeden? Yeah, he went 22nd that year with talk he might have actually gone third. But I digress, these three guys are excellent additions should they fall to Miami.
Ed Oliver, DL, Houston
I’ve seen Oliver fall to middle of the first round or as early as the top ten in every mock draft. If he were to slide to Miami, Oliver would have the upside of Warren Sapp. Great feet and very technical. He’s got all the pieces to anchor that line and retire a Miami Dolphin.
I love the small school guy who grows up in college even if he was slightly overlooked in the college recruiting process. You can call it “playing with a chip” if you want to, but this guy has a great skill set.
Christian Wilkins, DL, Clemson
I don’t think Clelin Ferrell will be there, but honestly, I would take either of the premier guys from Clemson. I prefer the size and scheme versatility of Wilkins a shade more.
6’4” and 310 pounds that has a well-coached game that complements his big man athleticism is irreplaceable. Many guys are saying that Geno Atkins is his comparison but I think a slightly shorter Richard Seymour is more suitable.
Cody Ford, OT, Oklahoma
With the loss of Ja’Wuan James at RT, Ford has the athleticism to play either tackle spot. The jury is still out on Laremy Tunsil - though things are trending up - and one thing we do know is that left guard is a position that Tunsil can excel at. Left tackle we will see how that unfolds but I think having a little left tackle insurance in Cody Ford makes all the sense in the world.
Bottom line, we know that the trenches need the most work for the Miami Dolphins. They have lost all sorts of talent there and this is a priority. They can pick up a center and guard in later rounds. There is always talent to be had later. Finding first round talent at tackle or the defensive line provides the ability to lock a great player up for four years before the big salary cap busting contract comes which many times comes in free agency.
This story was written by Steven Paulsen. Follow him on Twitter: @SarcasticPhin
Education has been a key focus for the Miami Dolphins for decades, and never has it been more important for kids to get the proper education they need in school than right now, in a world where lack of knowledge leads to extreme struggles later in life.
That's why early Monday morning, the Nat Moore Foundation - which now resides under the umbrella of the Miami Dolphins Foundation, and is the pillar of the foundation's education fund - gathered at Turnberry Isle to host their annual golf classic for the Nat Moore Endowment Fund.
"We started probably 25-26 years ago, we're raising money to send kids to college or to continue their education even through vocational trade public service." said Nat Moore. "One of the things I was challenged with by Steve Ross and Stuart Miller and some of the guys that have supported us dearly was, how do we help the most kids graduating from high school, get certified to go to work? So two years ago, we involved the vocation and trade, as well as scholarships."
Up until about two years ago, the event was hosted as an independent event by the Nat Moore Foundation, but now it enjoys the benefits of being a part of the Miami Dolphins Foundation, which gives them a little extra boost to help even more kids throughout Miami Dade, Broward, Palm Beach and Monroe counties.
Jennifer Jehn, who is the senior vice president of the Miami Dolphins Foundation as well as the Dolphins Cancer Challenge, credits teamwork for the events being able to come together so seamlessly in spite of everything else they have on their plate already.
"Well it all starts with a really good team," said Jehn. "One of our values at the Miami Dolphins is teamwork. Teamwork at work is really our community initiative, and we're committed to leveling the playing field through the power of teamwork to inspire a healthier, more educated, united South Florida."
And to become more educated, it has to be a priority, and the Dolphins see it as such which is why they have a hand in so many of their alumni charities dedicated to helping the youth of South Florida. Nat Moore's Endowment Fund helps the high school graduates, the Jason Taylor Foundation's entire goal is empowering youth, and that's not even counting the things the franchise does of their own volition.
There's no question it's a priority, and everyone involved recognizes that.
"You have to change with the times," said former Dolphins fullback Keith Byars. "As long as you're well-educated, you can be adaptive ... you're giving kids an opportunity to get involved, through their education, with whatever field of technology, whatever what have you; you're gonna be prepared."
"One of the groundsmen, he was like, 'Sam, oh my God, I remember you coming to Nat Moore's tournament, he gave me a scholarship!' And now he's working for the Dolphins, having an opportunity to be a groundsman there." said former Dolphins cornerback and current Chiefs defensive backs coach Sam Madison. "Just one of those things, and there's many other stories in itself that we can go into, but those are the types of things where you go, you come back, see these kids that you had an opportunity to help hands-on, and then they're being successful."
Breaks aren't easy to find in this world, and so it's telling that the Miami Dolphins are attempting to lead the way in the NFL to try and give students in need of a little boost, just what they need to potentially find success. Sometimes, a chance is all that's needed, and the Dolphins embrace that and make dreams come true in ways that often gets overlooked.
Yes, they spent the day playing golf, someone even went home with a new car thanks to getting a hole in one...but the intention is unmistakable, and the success stories attached to it is undeniable. Lives are being changed thanks to the Miami Dolphins franchise, and there's no telling how the world could change thanks to the contributions made by folks who show they care, just by swinging a club on a Monday morning.
This story was written by Luis Sung. Follow him on Twitter: @LuisDSung
The Miami Dolphins have re-signed wide receiver DeVante Parker to a 2-year for $11.2 million. When Dolphins fans saw that, they all had the same reaction.
All Parker has done as a Miami Dolphin since he was drafted with the 14th pick in the 2015 draft is get hurt, hear about how this year was the year he would break out, and flash his potential. It seems like at least one game a year, Parker shows the fans how good of a player he can be. For example, this past year, Parker had six catches for 134 yards against the Texans; in 2017, Parker had a couple of average games such as four catches for 85 yards against the Chargers, five catches for 76 yards against the Raiders, and six catches for 89 yards against the Bills.
In 2016, Parker had two games that stood out, when he had eight catches for 106 yards against the Patriots and when he had five catches for 103 yards against the Chargers. His rookie season, Parker ended the season on a three game stretch where he had 13 catches, 286 yards, and a touchdown. After these games people started asking questions.
“Is he finally breaking out?”
“Should we keep him for just one more year?”
“Where has this been his whole career?”
Well thanks to Brian Flores and Chris Grier, we will have at least one more season with Parker to find out whether or not Parker will be a part of the rebuild. The reason why Parker was re-signed is because he accepted a team friendly deal that can only be beneficial to the Dolphins.
Throughout the deal, Parker has incentives if he plays in X-amount of games. That incentive is due to his injury history which we all know is a problem. The second year of the contract is also a team option meaning it will be Miami’s choice if Parker stays a Dolphin after the 2019 season. The team option in this deal is the best part of this deal. Let's say Parker does happen to breakout this season and impresses the new coaching staff, Miami can then pick up his team option and keep him for another year.
On the other hand, if Parker just breaks our hearts again then Miami can decline the team option and leave Parker a free agent and not pay him a penny for the 2020 season. It seems like Flores and company have faith that Parker can turn into the player we all expected him too or at least see the potential we all see at least once a year.
Due to this, Parker will be a Dolphin another year but with a new coaching staff, meaning he has a clean slate. If Flores can turn Parker into a star receiver then all Dolphin fans will be pleasantly surprised, but if not then that would be another wasted pick from the Philbin era.
This story was written by Tanner Elliott. Follow him on Twitter: @Elliott302Tj
Quarterback Ryan Tannehill, whom Miami drafted as the eighth overall selection in the 2012 NFL Draft, was officially dealt to the Tennessee Titans Friday afternoon, according to a number of league sources. Miami will send Tannehill and a sixth-round selection to the Titans, whereas Tennessee will send a 2020 fourth-round choice and a 2019 seventh-round pick.
During his Miami tenure, Tannehill compiled a total record of 42-46 in six seasons of work, piling up 20,434 total passing yards, 123 touchdowns and 75 interceptions, finishing with a career 62.8 completion percentage. Staying healthy on a consistent basis was quite a struggle for Tannehill, inactive for 24 games due to injuries sustained in 2016 and 2017. In 2016, performing at the highest mark in his professional career, Tannehill sustained a brutal leg injury versus the Arizona Cardinals, causing Tannehill to miss the remainder of the season. Matt Moore was brought in relief, leading the Dolphins to the postseason, before an early wild-card exit.
In the summer of 2017, during a training camp session, Tannehill ran a play, landing awkwardly on the same knee injured in 2016. The incident required season-ending injury, which led to the signing of Jay Cutler to a one-year, $10 million deal. Tannehill will back-up Marcus Mariota, who has also struggled to stay healthy on a consistent basis. Mariota has yet to play a full sixteen game season with Tennessee.
Tannehill leaves Miami with a $13.4 million dead cap hit on the Dolphins’ total salary cap in 2019, plus the effects of the $5 million signing bonus Miami incorporated. Tannehill is not the first Dolphin shipped to Tennessee in what has been a dramatic offseason period.
DE Cameron Wake, who has spent his entire 10-year career with the Dolphins, was signed to a three-year, $23 million deal earlier this week.
Currently, the Dolphins have two quarterbacks on the active depth chart: former Detroit Lion Jake Rudock, who has yet to start in an NFL contest, and Luke Falk, who Miami acquired off waivers from Tennessee before the opening of the 2018 regular season.
The hope was whether Ryan Tannehill can lead Miami to a championship or not, and the answer was solved, point blank.
This story was written by Brandon Liguori. Follow him on Twitter: @BrandonRLiguori
There have been so many emotions that Dolphins fans have gone through with you as our franchise QB. From the moment you were drafted eighth overall in 2012, we held onto hope that you were going to be our next longtime signal caller. I remember saying, finally, we have found a QB after Marino. It began with Mike Sherman & Zac Taylor, your former college coach at A & M being named OC and QB coach by head coach Joe Philbin. The excitement was contagious and I was a huge fan of your skills and your intelligence. Fast forward to 2019 and the fans are saying goodbye to start all over AGAIN! Somewhere in between 2012 and 2019, I became disenchanted with the way things had been going. As a fan, we look for people to blame. This fan blamed you…a lot!
Lately, I have had time to reflect and recharge my batteries getting ready for the offseason activities. And I also wanted to say to you that I am sorry for blaming everything on you and I will truly miss you as a player and a person. A wise man once told me that a real man doesn’t point fingers but rather thumbs, something you have been doing since you arrived in South Florida. I am now convinced that you have been stuck in a bad situation with bad ownership, a horrendous front office and so many different offensive philosophies. I truly believe you were in a no-win situation.
First, I want to say that you are one of the most humble professional athletes I have ever seen. You never pointed fingers since you arrived in Miami. You always stood tall, no matter how difficult of a defeat and took the blame for everything that went wrong. That’s admirable. Your front office failed you repetitively. Looking back at it, it makes me sick to my stomach the amount of changes and instability this organization gave you. You were the most sacked QB in your first few seasons due to the inability to develop an offensive line. Mike Pouncey was never on the field, Bullygate hit the airwaves, you never had a TE to throw to, your receivers were subpar and then the knee injuries happened. Your physical toughness was bound to catch up with you after the weekly beatings you took in the pocket. But your mental toughness never wavered. That’s admirable.
Since the new regime arrived in Miami, it’s only fair that they wanted to hit the reset button and start from scratch. As a lifelong fan, this is the first time I have been this excited since Jimmy Johnson’s big splash in 1996. You deserve, more than anybody, another shot to be a starting QB for an organization that has some stability. Your dedication to the Tennessee Titans franchise, its fans and your teammates will earn you that opportunity. At this juncture, you are bound for greatness whether it be on the gridiron or in your personal life. Life after football isn’t that far away. You were a biology major destined for medical school. It’s never too late when your playing career is over. Your heart is second to none and I hope my son has your mental toughness and big heart when he gets older. The world would be a better place filled with people like you. Your family did an amazing job raising the young man you came to be.
From the bottom of my heart, thank you for all your hard work with the Miami Dolphins. This writer wishes you, Lauren and Stella Rose all the best in your future endeavors.
This story was written by James Barbaro. Follow him on Twitter: @thebigbear1977
Back in 2001, Louder Than a Bomb was founded through the Young Chicago Authors, by Kevin Coval (YCA Artistic Director) and Anna West to give middle and high school youth a place to express themselves in ways that the world had never seen before.
Then in 2013, in conjunction with Omari Hardwick bluapple Poetry Network, the Jason Taylor Foundation decided to throw their hats into the ring and start the Louder Than a Bomb Florida competition, giving the students of Broward County an opportunity to express themselves with the spoken word in a safe and comfortable environment.
"We met and spoke with the folks from Young Chicago Authors; with their blessing we brought the format to South Florida." said Vice President of Operations for the Jason Taylor Foundation, Sean Todd. "It's very rewarding to see the poets have the platform, and it's an honor for us to provide that platform to them where they can speak their truth."
39 schools across at least ten different locations competed in the preliminary bouts which spanned over two days, and the highlighted bout for this story took place at the Miramar Amphitheater, where this writer was honored with the privilege to be one of the judges for the second year in a row.
Student after student came out and gave it their all on stage, letting out what was in their hearts for the world to hear. For some, it was a simple poem, for others it was a way to vent feelings that have been bottled up for years. This was the case for one student from Charles W. Flanagan High School by the name of Isaac Bright, whose poem about a flower garden was filled with raw power, driven by his own personal life experiences.
"Mainly ... kinda family problems, but also because I really love flowers. Funny story, I actually wrote this while being socially anxious in an Applebee's." said Bright. "But, it's just when I start thinking of plants, my mind just tries to go somewhere. I don't normally do regular poetry, it's more just storytelling with fancy words.
"It took a lot of erasing, and a lot of trial and error, picking which went in and which couldn't. But really, one of my strategies is start from the end, and try to fill the points around it, that way the entire story flows together. How did we get to this point?"
Clearly the strategy worked, as Bright - along with his fellow "Writers Ink" teammates - took first place in the preliminary bout, giving them a trip to the next round, much to the pride of their coach, Kristy Modia, who is an English teacher at Flanagan High School.
"We worked hard to get here, we've been practicing ever since the beginning of the school year," she said. "So yeah, very proud."
This is just the beginning for this year's Louder Than a Bomb Florida, and it's easy to understand why the Jason Taylor Foundation puts so much effort into making this happen year after year. This empowers the youth of South Florida, lets their voices be heard and their passions put on display on a stage larger than any other. If the youth of today is the future, then maybe it's good we hear what they're thinking in the present.
This story was written by Luis Sung. Follow him on Twitter: @LuisDSung
“The Dolphins could benefit from having an in-line blocking tight end because Miami’s depth at that position is thin.
This particular part of the column bugged me because Kelly consistently and constantly criticized Gesicki’s blocking last year.
Gesicki is a 6’6” 245 pound tight end. His job is to set up mismatches in the passing game, not block. Admittedly he didn’t do as good of a job at that as most would have liked last year, but he’s still developing and it was apparent that he wasn’t ready to take on a bigger role. We shall see what happens this year when you could reasonably expect a second round tight end to bloom.
Personally, I thought Dave Hyde, also at the Sun-Sentinel, provided a more sensible analysis:
“The Dolphins’ signing of tight end Dwayne Allen says: (a) new offensive coordinator Chad O’Shea liked Allen in New England; (b) they’re not happy with blocking tight ends like fourth-round pick Durham Smythe or Nick O’Leary; c) they’re not going to ask Mike Gesicki to be an in-line blocker anymore.
This I can get on board with. Allen is an upgrade to Smythe, who will now be a backup, because he can both block and catch. And, yes, the Dolphins are rebuilding, not tanking. If you are tanking you don’t sign anyone who can help. Rebuilding means targeting only players that you think will be a part of your long-term future.
Which brings me to my only real criticism of the deal. At 29 years old, Allen is just a little older than I’d like. But rebuilds nowadays can happen quickly and it's unlikely that two years down the line at 31 years old the Dolphins will have any major regrets about the signing, particularly if Allen brings a locker room presence that can help younger players develop.
“Sam Young, who filled in admirably for an injured James as the starting right tackle for the final eight games of the 2017 season, is also a free agent. It is unclear at this moment if Miami intends on re-signing the former St. Thomas Aquinas High standout.
None of those veteran options look particularly tantalizing and it's unlikely that the Dolphins are going to find a good solution in free agency.
Given that the current make up of the Dolphins brain trust is very Patriot heavy, you wonder if they aren’t planning to follow the New England offensive line model. New England rarely pays their offensive linemen, preferring to develop unknown players and turn them into Pro Bowlers. Turning Trent Brown into one of the league's top left tackles only to let him go to the Raiders for a record contract this offseason is the latest example.
I’m all in favor of the Dolphins pulling off similar feats but I doubt they can pull it off without New England coach Dante Scarnecchia, who is universally acknowledged as the best offensive line coach in the business. Is Dolphins line coach Pat Flaherty in Scarnecchia’s class? Not that I ever heard.
Something tells me that if the Dolphins are planning to spin straw into gold on the offensive line the way New England does, they are in for a rude awakening.
“’I think that his height was inflated,’ an unnamed scout told Dan Patrick on Tuesday, and Dan relayed the story on the Wednesday edition of his show. ‘Maybe it’s the tin-foil hat theory. I just don’t see it. If he refuses to be measured at the Pro Day, that will be telling.”’
If it's a tin hat theory, then it's going around because I’m wearing a similar one. The possibility that this number wasn’t accurate was the first thing I thought of when I heard the result. Murray was measured at 5’9-5/8” at Oklahoma. Suddenly he is half an inch taller, meaning that his college substantially underestimated his height rather than inflating it as is the more standard procedure.
I’m having a hard time with that.
“I think he just wants to flex his power He has small [man’s] syndrome. I still talk to guys who are there, and trust me, there’s not much respect for him in that locker room.”
Bennett also let it be known that he will be staying in the locker room during the playing of the national anthem this season:
“’I explained to them is that my integrity mean everything,’ Bennett said, according to ESPN. ’I think they respect that about me, they respect who I am as an individual.’”
Yeah, Bennett is an individual alright. Just like his brother Martellus, Michael is an individual to a fault.
There’s a reason why Bennett will be going on the fourth team of his career (the Seahawks twice) and the third in three years. He’s an immature, high maintenance player who can be a handful in the locker room. The Patriots are betting that they have the culture to tame Bennett but it says here that if he plays for them in 2019, he won’t be there in 2020.
Talented as he is, New England could be his last stop.
I have never like the league’s procedures for replay and in my opinion this is a step in the wrong direction. The challenge system for review is hopelessly broken in part because NFL coaches are expected to do both their own job and that of the officials under the current rules.
I really don’t care what sort of system the league implements but it should be one that relieves coaches the responsibility for cleaning up the mess created by poor calls.
Personally, I favor an extra official in the booth who is responsible for deciding whether a play should be reviewed. And, of course, any on-field official should also be allowed to request a review of a call they weren’t sure of.
This story was written by Tom Shannon. Follow him on Twitter: @bearingthenews
With free agency approaching as well as trade rumors heating up, here are five possible players the Dolphins should consider trading for.
This story was written by Tanner Elliott. Follow him on Twitter: @Elliott302Tj
On Saturday afternoon, the Miami Dolphins boosted a young tight end group, signing former Indianapolis Colts and New England Patriots TE Dwayne Allen to a two-year, $7 million dollar deal, per ESPN's Adam Schefter.
Allen, a Clemson graduate, opened his professional career with Indianapolis, totaling 1,451 yards and 19 touchdowns in five seasons of work. Once traded to New England, Allen’s production decreased tremendously, due in large part to the presence of Rob Gronkowski and being used primarily as a blocker. In two seasons, Allen concluded with just 113 yards and a touchdown.
Allen should work well with head coach Brian Flores and offensive coordinator Chad O’Shea; who both worked under Bill Belichick in New England. Miami’s tight end group, led by Mike Gesicki, Durham Smythe, A.J. Derby and Nick O’Leary, were mainly inconsistent in 2018, and now it's unlikely Derby or injured player MarQueis Gray will be brought back.
Gesicki, whom Miami drafted in the second round of this past NFL draft, contributed 202 yards and zero touchdowns, used mostly - inexplicably - as a blocker, despite his aptitude being for catching passes; Derby appeared in four games before being placed on season-ending IR; Smythe finished with 50 yards in fifteen games, and O’Leary, claimed off waivers in September, produced 86 yards and a touchdown.
Allen has a Super Bowl ring with New England and has caught footballs from arguably one of the greatest quarterbacks in history, Tom Brady. Training camp opens in late July, and Allen is set to fight with three or four tight ends for a starting job in 2019.
This story was written by Brandon Liguori. Follow him on Twitter: @BrandonRLiguori
Per sources, and as expected, the Miami Dolphins are expected to announce the release of defensive end Andre Branch.
Branch was scheduled to earn $6.9 million this upcoming season, which would have been the final year of his contract. However, by cutting the 29 year old veteran, he will only count $2 million towards the Dolphins cap this coming season.
Since joining the Miami Dolphins in 2016, Branch's on field production continued to decline. In 2016, Branch racked up 26 total tackles with 23 assists and 5.5 sacks. However, in 2017 he ended the season with 12 total tackles, 11 assists, and 4.5 sacks. This past season, he totaled 17 tackles with 8 assists and 1.5 sacks.
Although Branch started strong with the Dolphins in 2016, and was rewarded with a contract extension, he was unable to produce at a high level.
This is the first of many expected moves by the Miami Dolphins. As the offseason progresses, players such as Ryan Tannehill, Cameron Wake, Danny Amendola, Daniel Kilgore, Ted Larsen, Robert Quinn, and Kiko Alonso, who are all over 28 years old, could be released in order to create cap space and also build a foundation of younger players.
The purge has begun. Hang on!
This article was written by Ian Berger. Follow him on Twitter: @ian693
With the NFL Draft a little over two months away we take a look at how the first round of the draft can turn out. This mock draft will be a pre combine one and many things can change from now until April 25th. As we get closer to the draft we will put out more mocks as picks and team needs change, as well as more rumors come out.
Cardinals, Pick 1: Nick Bosa, DE, Ohio State
Nick Bosa is the consensus number one pick in this year’s draft. Bosa has little to no flaws other than he was sidelined most of this past year with an injury. When Bosa got injured, he said that he would focus on the NFL Draft and sit out the rest of the season. Bosa would instantly boost the Cardinals defense and cause a lot of havoc his rookie year.
49ers, Pick 2: Josh Allen, DE/OLB, Kentucky
Josh Allen is not just a defensive end but that is what most teams think he is best at. Allen is one of the best pass rushers in this draft class, but he can also drop back in coverage. Allen has the quickness to cover some of the better tight ends in the NFL if he can get better at man coverage. Just like Bosa, Allen should boost the defense of 49ers with an already young front 7.
Jets, Pick 3: Quinnen Williams, DL, Alabama
Williams is one of the most consistent players in this draft. Defensive line is not a glaring need for the Jets, but with this pick they will be picking the best player available. Some draft experts even think that Williams is the best player in the draft. Williams was very dominant against a good LSU team and playing in the SEC proves he was consistent against good college competition. Williams can play in any defensive scheme and has good size at 6’4” and 290 pounds.
Raiders, Pick 4: Rashan Gary, DL, Michigan
Last offseason the Raiders traded away Khalil Mack and Gary could be his successor. Gary does not have the talent Mack does but the Raiders will still have a solid defensive lineman. Gary is very consistent when he is on the field. That being said, Gary does have an injury history which could cause him to fall in the draft. I would not be surprised if the Raiders trade down from this spot to get more picks in this year’s and next year’s draft.
TRADE: Redskins, Pick 5: Kyler Murray, QB, Oklahoma
Washington trades up to the fifth overall spot to take their quarterback of the future. With Alex Smith out at least all next year, the Redskins draft Kyler Murray to be their new RG3. Murray does have size concerns (which should be mitigated thanks to his combine measurements) but has a great arm and physical attributes.
Murray will already have a solid backfield behind him in Adrian Peterson, Chris Thompson, and Derrius Guice so they can take some weight off his shoulders. Washington can run the same offense they ran with Josh Johnson late in the season since both players are mobile quarterbacks. If Washington can use Murray the right way and drafts a receiver later in the draft, they would have good odds to rival the Cowboys for the division next year.
Giants, Pick 6: Dwayne Haskins, QB, Ohio State
The Giants draft their signal caller of the future in Dwayne Haskins, Haskins is the top quarterback on the draft board, and they get him here at pick 6. There have been reports that Kyler Murray is too short, but at 6’3”, Haskins does not share that concern. Haskins has to clean up some of his decision making skills but with Odell Beckham Jr. and Saquon Barkley leading the offense, Haskins should have time to develop to his full potential.
Jaguars, Pick 7: Dexter Lawrence, DL, Clemson
The Jaguars are expected to release Malik Jackson this offseason, so Lawrence would be a good fit in Jacksonville. Lawrence would already be around a good rotation of pass rushers and young linebackers. Lawrence is one of the best defensive linemen in this draft and with the top two quarterbacks gone they should address the defensive tackle position.
Lions, Pick 8: Clelin Ferrell, DE, Clemson
Detroit will be looking for a new defensive end since Ezekiel Ansah will be a free agent this offseason. With 55 tackles, 11.5 sacks, and three forced fumbles, Ferrell put up good numbers last season. Ferrell is a speed rusher and relies on his quickness, speed, and elusiveness to get around offensive linemen and get to the quarterback. Ferrell could replace Ansah and potentially be a cornerstone of their defense.
Bills, Pick 9: Jawaan Taylor, OT, Florida
Offensive line is one of the biggest needs for the Bills and here they get the best one in the draft. Taylor played on the right side at Florida so he would not be guarding Josh Allen’s blindside, but he would still give a huge boost to a below average offensive line.
Taylor had consistency issues at Florida up until last season which boosted his stock a ton. At 6’5” and 340 pounds, Taylor has the right combination of size, strength and movement to be a franchise tackle in the NFL.
Broncos, Pick 10: Devin White, LB, LSU
White is one of the best prospects in this draft but due to the amount of defensive linemen in this draft, he falls to the Broncos at the 10th pick. White is a complete linebacker and with the Broncos not picking up Brandon Marshall’s option, White would be an instant starter.
White has the potential to be the next great linebacker since he has the instincts, intangibles, and the athletic ability. Denver already has a solid defense anchored by Von Miller and Bradley Chubb so adding White to the mix would only make them that much more intimidating.
Bengals, Pick 11: Cody Ford, OT, Oklahoma
Before the Bengals look to boost their defense or make a change at quarterback, they need to solidify the offensive line. Oklahoma was one of the best offensive lines in college football last year and one reason was because of Cody Ford. Ford is a very athletic offensive tackle, which is very important in today’s NFL.
Ford does have an injury history but does tough it out and did not miss one game in 2018 and only two in 2017. The only way that Ford does not suit up and play is because he absolutely cannot play. Ford also played right tackle but in today’s NFL right tackle is just as important as left tackle.
Packers, Pick 12: Montez Sweat, DE, Mississippi State
Sweat was one of the most dominant players at this year's Senior Bowl. The Packers are a below average team without Aaron Rodgers playing so the Packers would be smart to start rebuilding the team. Their defense already has some young talent and Sweat will just add to that.
The only red flag Sweat has is that he was dismissed from Michigan State due to discipline issues then transferred to Mississippi State. Sweat has stayed out of trouble since and has been a very productive player. Sweat has the size to play both defensive end or outside linebacker depending what defensive scheme the Packers run under their new defensive coordinator.
Dolphins, Pick 13: Ed Oliver, DL, Houston
Oliver at one point was considered the best player in the draft and the Dolphins snag him at 13. Oliver brings a lot to the table such as the ability to play in either scheme. Dolphins defensive coordinator said the Dolphins will run a hybrid defense and Oliver fits right into that. Oliver would line up anywhere on the defensive line depending on the situation or if there are any injuries that week. Oliver would be a dream come true if he falls to Miami due to his versatility and work ethic.
Falcons, Pick 14: Christian Wilkins, DL, Clemson
The Falcons defense was not the best last year and like many other teams so far they will boost their defensive line with this pick. Wilkins will be a good fit in an already young Falcons defense. Wilkins has terrific size at 6’4” and 300 pounds and should have no trouble holding his ground in the trenches. With 51 tackles and six sacks, Wilkins is more well rounded than his Clemson teammates but he also has the lowest ceiling making him one of the last drafted.
TRADE: Buccaneers, Pick 15: Josh Jacobs, RB, Alabama
Tampa trades down in the draft and drafts the player they wanted at 5 at 15. Jacobs is the best running back in this year’s draft and running back is a big need for Tampa. Ever since Doug Martin fell off, Tampa has not had a stable running back.
Under new head coach Bruce Arians, the Buccaneers are going to need one running back that they can depend on. When Arians coached the Cardinals, he had David Johnson to work with and that helped balance out the offense. Jacobs has good size at 5'11" and 200 pounds and does have some experience catching the ball out of the backfield. His combine will really show if he is truly worth a first round pick.
Panthers, Pick 16: Greg Little, OT, Ole Miss
Offensive line is a huge need for the Panthers, especially with Cam Newton’s shoulder injury. Little would play left tackle so the Panthers should feel good about that. Little has not missed one game since he started playing college football in 2016, making him very dependable and not injury prone. At 6’6" and 325 pounds, Little should give Newton a little more time in the pocket, especially since the NFC South’s defensive lines are not the best.
Browns, Pick 17: Jonah Williams, OT, Alabama
The Browns have been looking for Joe Thomas’s replacement since he retired and they found him in Williams. Williams plays either right or left tackle so he will probably be protecting Baker Mayfield’s blindside. Williams has good feet and quickness but lacks lower body strength which could impact his run blocking. Once Williams puts on more lower body strength the Browns can depend on him to be their new Joe Thomas.
Vikings, Pick 18: Andre Dillard, OT, Washington State
The Vikings have weapons all around Kirk Cousins, now it is time to give him some protection. Dillard really improved his stock this year at the Senior Bowl, being one of the best offensive linemen there. There have been reports that Dillard is one of the most athletic tackles in all of College Football.
Dillard has excellent feet, quickness, and technique which are all positive for an NFL prospect. Dillard does play on the left side so he will have to protects Cousins' blindside against some mediocre defensive lines in the NFC North, although the Bears have one of the defensive lines in the league.
Titans, Pick 19: D.K. Metcalf, WR, Ole Miss
Receiver is a huge need for the Titans since Corey Davis is not producing like we all envisioned. D.K. Metcalf has elite height at 6’4” and could be Marcus Mariota’s new favorite target. Metcalf put up good numbers this season with 26 catches, 569 yards, and five touchdowns in seven games before a neck injury kept him out for the rest of the season. He also has big play ability with his longest catch last season being 75 yards, and the Titans need big play ability.
Steelers, Pick 20: Greedy Williams, CB, LSU
Due to the amount of dominant defensive linemen and offensive tackles, the Steelers grab the draft's best corner at pick 20. Williams has elite height at 6’3” which makes him very good at both man and press coverages. The Steelers will love how they can use Williams since he is long and physical. With 33 tackles, two interceptions, and nine pass deflections, Williams was a shutdown corner in college and many teams expect that to transfer over to the NFL.
Seahawks, Pick 21: Nasir Adderley, S, Delaware
Seattle finds their Kam Chancellor replacement in Adderley. Adderley has the best ball skills in this draft and also is not afraid of contact. Chancellor was great at finding the ball and attacking it and Adderley is the same way. Adderley does have some trouble reading plays, but he should get better with time. At 6’0” and 190 pounds he has decent size but has room to get bigger.
Ravens, Pick 22: Jachai Polite, DE, Florida
Polite will be a good player for an already solid Ravens defense. Polite has a very explosive first step which is important in the NFL. Polite is more of a speed rusher than a power rusher but can make offensive linemen unbalanced if he needs to. Consistency and effort are two things people see as red flags but playing for the Ravens he should get plenty of rest and always give full effort playing for a playoff team.
Texans, Pick 23: Tytus Howard, OT, Alabama State
Howard is a small school prospect but has nice film against bigger schools such as Auburn. He has played both left and right tackle so the Texans can put him wherever they feel he would help the most. Protecting franchise quarterback Deshaun Watson is very important for the Texans and they would be making an excellent pick here. Howard might be a developmental player, but he should turn out to be a great player for the Texans.
Raiders (via Bears), Pick 24: Deionte Thompson, S, Alabama
Thompson will not participate in the combine because of a wrist injury that requires surgery, but there will be no long-term issues. The Raiders are boosting their defense with this pick and rumors of Karl Joseph getting traded and Reggie Nelson being a free agent, this pick makes a lot of sense. Thompson has great speed and hip movement and is a fantastic tackler, but the trend with Alabama safeties in the NFL is that teams see they lack coverage skills and eventually move them to linebacker.
Eagles, Pick 25: Deandre Baker, CB, Georgia
Corner is one of the biggest needs for the Eagles and they address it here with Baker. Baker is considered by some people to be the best corner in the draft but does have some off-field concerns. He is not as tall as Greedy Williams at 5’11” but Baker is a more well-rounded corner. Baker can play slot, man, press, or zone and only allowed a 40.9 passer rating this past season. Baker should have a tough rookie season going against Odell Beckham Jr. and Amari Cooper twice a piece.
Colts, Pick 26: N’Keal Harry, WR, Arizona State
Harry would be a perfect compliment to T.Y. Hilton. Harry is a big and physical receiver that would pair nicely with Hilton’s small and fast build. Harry has terrific hands and at his height he could be making Calvin Johnson type plays. Harry is not as good at changing his direction but that should not be that big of a concern since he will be playing alongside of Hilton.
Raiders (via Cowboys), Pick 27: T.J. Hockenson, TE, Iowa
With Jared Cook being a free agent, the Raiders give Derek Carr a new weapon. Hockenson is one of the best tight end prospects to come out of the draft since O.J. Howard. At 6’5” and 243 pounds he is a big guy who should become an instant redzone threat. He is a very balanced player with great hands and run blocking. If Hockenson can adjust to the NFL quickly he become a household name just as quick.
Chargers, Pick 28: Daniel Jones, QB, Duke
Quarterback is not a glaring need for the Chargers, but it is a position that the they will need in the upcoming years. Jones is a not a day one starter, but he can develop under Philip Rivers. Jones has good accuracy and good throw power. If Jones can develop and learn the offense under Rivers, quarterback will not be a need for a very long time.
Chiefs, Pick 29: Byron Murphy, CB, Washington
Murphy is viewed by some as the best corner in the draft. Corner is a huge need for the Chiefs as the defense is one of the league's worst. Murphy could be Marcus Peters' replacement after he was traded last offseason. He is a great zone coverage corner and knows his strengths since he is 6’0” and 175 pounds.
At that height he could play man but against the bigger receivers that would not be ideal. Murphy is also not the best in run support which could be an issue if the Chiefs do not fix their defense.
Packers (via Saints), Pick 30: Devin Bush Jr., LB, Michigan
Bush is a great player who would instantly become a leader on this young Packers defense. Bush excels in both pass coverage and run stopping which is very important playing in the NFC North. He would have to cover tight ends such as Kyle Rudolph and Trey Burton but also hunt down running backs like Jordan Howard and Dalvin Cook. Bush has great speed and instincts and will excel early in his NFL career.
Rams, Pick 31: Mack Wilson, LB, Alabama
Wilson is not getting as much hype as other Alabama linebackers but he's still just as good as the other ones. At 6’2” and 240 pounds, Wilson has the size to be a great linebacker in this league. He has good speed with his size and is just as good in pass coverage as he is in run support.
It will be interesting to see how Wilson fits in with the Rams defense since they will be reshaping it due to salary cap. The Rams might even make him a cornerstone in their new look defense with Aaron Donald.
Patriots, Pick 32: Brian Burns, DE, Florida State
The Patriots will more than likely trade this pick as they trade out of the first round almost every year, but if they do not, they draft a very talented edge rusher. With recent reports saying that the Patriots will not be re-signing Trey Flowers, Burns would instantly fill in as the starter. Burns is an exact copy of Flowers but with Burns' speed he could be just as - if not more - effective. Compared to Flowers, Burns is tall but weighs about 30 pounds less so it will be interesting to see how effective he is in the run game.
This story was written by Tanner Elliott. Follow him on Twitter: @Elliott302Tj
So, recently the NFL awarded compensatory picks to certain franchises. You could almost look at this metric and understand why our Miami Dolphins are in the situation they are. The first compensatory pick is pick 96. New England received picks 97 and 101 of round 3. The Los Angeles Rams received picks 98 and 99 respectively.
The Miami Dolphins receive pick zero of round zero!
Washington (96), Carolina (100) and Baltimore (102) received the other third round compensatory picks. Atlanta was the first non-playoff team from this past to receive a pick which would be the 10th such pick assigned. In fact, only 17 of the 32 compensatory picks given out were to non-playoff teams this year.
Let’s start with how you gain a compensatory pick. According to my research, under the rules for compensatory draft selections a team losing more or better compensatory free agents (CFA) than it acquires in the previous year is eligible to receive compensatory picks via NFL Communications letter.
What the heck does all this mean? It means if you lose players of value you have the opportunity to draft possible replacements. It doesn’t matter who you draft just that you have more opportunities to hit on guys. How is it that the Super Bowl teams are allocated four of the top six compensatory draft picks?
It really goes back to that “letting a guy move on a year early instead of a year late” concept!
Teams are rewarded for drafting well and grooming the next man up. Where are the Miami Dolphins in this process?
Nonexistent is the word of the day. That’s the difference between drafting well and losing a few guys who have replacements in the pipeline and a team like the Miami Dolphins who give record contracts to guys on their own agenda who barely move the needle.
The league has a recipe for success and the compensatory pick process is part of it. Dig deeper and you will find that the Miami Dolphins didn’t receive any compensatory draft picks last year either.
Bottom line, if you draft well you have a pipeline of players to replace the departures. The league then rewards you with replacements. The draft position almost doesn’t matter in today’s league. How many guys named Antonio Brown, Shannon Sharpe, Terrelle Davis, Jared Allen, Richard Sherman, Zach Thomas, or Tom Brady need to be drafted for this franchise to understand the importance of stockpiling picks.
This story was written by Steven Paulsen. Follow him on Twitter: @SarcasticPhin
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