Dave Wannstedt would stand at a podium today and tell you, “We plan on drafting Darius Butler with our pick at 25″. Then he would trade the pick and another pick to move up one spot to get him. Nick Saban would simply lie to your face and then draft a Safety just to spite the media and the fans…one projected for the late 2nd or 3rd rounds. Cam Cameron and Randy Mueller wouldn’t say a word unless it was over some super secret dinner and then they would draft a WR. All know that the biggest need for the Miami Dolphins right now is “Cornerback“. So, it’s a given that this years draft will net us a first round CB. Right? Not so fast.
You have to consider who is pulling the strings in this draft. Bill Parcells and his protege’ Jeff Ireland. With these two you get no secret dinner plans, no lie to your face, no outward admittance of what they will do. With them you get nothing. Nothing at all.
There is one thing that these two, especially Parcells, hates. Having something dictated to them. In this case, the draft. They won’t go in to the draft saying, “we need a corner because Terrell Owens is now in the division”, they will go into the draft with every intention on manipulating it so that it suits their agenda.
The fact that these two will never allow themselves to be backed into a corner…no pun intended…means that they will not rely on the draft for their starting CB. Too much risk involved. What if the guy/s they are targeting are off the board before 25? What if a can’t miss LB prospect falls to 25? What if someone offers them picks to move up to 25 and the Phins out of round 1 all together? What if, what if, what if? If I can ask those questions you know damn well they have…a million times over.
So where does that leave them as they search for a starting CB to work opposite Will Allen? Perhaps they believe that Will Billingsley or Scorpio Babers are ready for the job. Perhaps they believe that Nathan Jones or Joey Thomas have shown enough to be the starter. Maybe, just maybe, Jason Allen is set to show up. Probably not on any of those accounts. More likely, these guys have a plan, a contingency plan, and a contingency plan for their contingency plan.
So what is it? Well, unlike past regimes, we can only speculate. The last big name on the FA market is Leigh Bodden who hasn’t been touched or offered a deal since being cut by Detroit…prior to free agency. The Patriots thought so highly of him and their need at CB that they decided to float more money to 35 year old Shaun Springs. 31 teams in the NFL of which half could use CB help wouldn’t give CB Bryant McFadden more than 5 mill a year. He signed a 2 year 10 million dollar deal and he was supposed to be a prize catch. Conversely, Andre’ Goodman signed with Denver…in his 30’s…for 5 years, 25 million, and 10 million guaranteed. What gives?
Could a trade be in the works? Could the Dolphins be quietly working on a deal that would involve shipping Samson Satele, Matt Roth, or maybe even Joey Porter somewhere for a solid CB? It seems possible although in this day and age of the NFL, player for player trades rarely happen without a draft pick being involved. Are they talking about moving say, Satele and the 25 pick to move up in the draft? Seems possible except that Parcells would likely want to move down instead of up and try and get a 3rd for the center.
Maybe Ted Ginn’s name is being tossed around. Again, it’s all conjecture. Nobody knows outside of Jeff Ireland and Bill Parcells. It’s hard to believe that these two have nothing up their sleeves and perhaps that very thought is prevalent around the NFL. Maybe 31 other GM’s are saying “What is BP up to”. Maybe that is the plan.
One thing is for certain. The Dolphins will have a starting CB come September and Will Allen will have his hands full facing two of the AFC East opponents. How this plays out, who starts, and who doesn’t is mind blowing 5 months before training camp. In the meantime, your guess and the guesses of 31 NFL teams is as good as mine.
You can join me tomorrow night at 8 PM Eastern time at www.finsradio.net as I entertain these very thoughts and many others live.