Prince Amukamara won't be in Miami next season.

Pat Kirwan, Pay Attention


I’ve read more mock drafts in the past two months than I’d care to admit. I’ve crept across the vast expanse of the internet, leaving no stone unturned and I’ve seen some pretty horrid predictions along the way. I’ve seen players that didn’t declare for the draft going in the first round, players that won’t be taken until Saturday (4-7) in the top 20 and all kinds of bizarre predictions for the Dolphins at 15. And that’s ok, because a good majority of the mock drafts you find in the darkest corners of these interwebs are written by morons or fans of other teams (or in the case Steelers and Jets fans, both).

What boggles my mind though is when a mainstream expert like Pat Kirwan has the Dolphins taking Prince Amukamara at 15. Now, first a whole bunch of concessions. Pat Kirwan is brilliant, he wrote the book Omar Kelly touts so frequently (“Take Your Eyes Off the Ball”) and his commentary is typically spot-on. The man truly knows his football. And Prince Amukamara is a fantastic corner. In fact so good I doubt he makes it to the 15th pick. And given the fact the Jets spent a first rounder on Kyle Wilson last year when they had Antonio Cromartie and Darrelle Revis locked up it could also, technically, happen. But it won’t. That’s a prediction from a very smart man that just makes absolutely no sense.

Amukamara is the second best corner on the board. The Dolphins know they are playing more nickel defense than the base package, which means the third corner is a starter. With Tom Brady, the Patriots play a lot of three-receiver packages. Miami will get a running back later.

Now, it may not be fair to fault Kirwan for not having in-depth knowledge of every team’s reserves. But corner ceased to be a need for the Dolphins when Will Allen restructured his deal to stay in Miami. The Dolphins currently have three talented young corners with a ton of potential in Vontae Davis, Sean Smith and Nolan Carroll. Toss in Allen and suddenly Benny Sapp is the fifth corner, and the Dolphins still retain rights to Al Harris and Nate Ness. Even if Miami still wants to move Sean Smith back to safety on some of its nickel and dime packages, the Dolphins still don’t need to spend a top 15 pick on a corner this year. There are plenty of better ways to spend that pick.

Now, I mentioned the Jets because clearly that’s a parallel that can be drawn. However aside from already having two good corners on the roster, there aren’t many similarities between the two situations beyond that. First of all, team needs were much different, the Jets were in win-now mode and were addressing a different set of issues than the Dolphins are. One of those issues was the fact that Darrelle Revis was threatening to hold out, which he did until the last possible moment. It might be easy to forget that, but the Wilson pick was made as much to be a contingency for the absence of Revis, as it was to get another good corner on the field.

The Dolphins don’t have that issue, barring injury they should have both of their starting corners back on the field as well as three guys (Carroll, Allen and Sapp) vying for the Nickel corner role. For a team with questions at quarterback, running back and along the interior line, using a top 15 pick on a corner would be a bad decision by the front office. The secondary, despite being banged up a lot of last season (and missing Will Allen through all of it) still finished 8th in the NFL. The entire defense was top ten overall (top five until they mailed it in at Foxboro).

There have been other analysts and commentators who have listed corner as a need for the Dolphins and even had Miami taking one in there mocks, Kirwan is just the best to do it. And I’m not bashing Kirwan, for all I know maybe he’s right and I’ll be eating crow in 13 days. I just don’t understand when corner became a need for the Dolphins. This team has enough needs without analysts adding new ones.

And ending on a lighter note, there’s a sentimental reason I hope Kirwan’s wrong too. I remember a draft exactly ten years ago when Miami had two good corners on the roster (a couple guys named Madison and Surtain), a top ten defense and they needed a quarterback. They opted instead to select a corner, Jamar Fletcher. The rest is history and we all got to see Drew Brees raise a Lombardi in Miami a couple years ago for another team. I’m not saying it’s exactly the same or that it will happen again, I’m just point out the similarities.  And it does feel a little… odd.

Regardless, Pat Kirwan is a bright guy, but dead wrong on this.

Tags: Dolphins Draft Pat Kirwan Prince Amukamara Sean Smith Vontae Davis Will Allen

  • markeyh

    I also upon seeing that scratched my head.

    Good pick up….

    If they draft a CB in the first they will get booed so bad and we will have a repeat of the Ted Ginn pick.

  • http://www.phinzmania.com Phinzmania Padre

    I would believe Pat before I would believe most anyone else. IF this player is available he would be a TREMENDOUS value pick but I would think we would trade down as there would be someone wanting to trade up to get Prince.

    I would be THRILLED to get this kid – he is NO Jamar Fletcher and don’t kid yourself – You never have too many GOOD corners – not in the league today.

    • Patrik Nohe

      Think you hit the nail on the head when you said if he falls to 15 (which I think is unlikely) the Fins will be able to trade back because he’s a hot commodity. I agree you can never have enough corners, but that would still be more of a luxury pick at this point given the current roster and the team needs.

  • hahafunny

    I saw one “analyst” that had qb listed as our lowest need and RB wasn’t even in our top tier of needs. I thought that was kind of funny since we don’t have any established rb’s on our roster and we need at least one more qb even if you are happy with Henne.
    I would like to see us double up on qb and possibly rb if we can this draft, but defintely qb. I hope they trade down and pick up a second then get either keap or ponder in the 2nd and then pick up enderly (sp?) from idaho later in the draft.

  • Ian

    Pat Kirwan can be described by a word that starts with B and ryhmes with loaner. I’m not sure I’ve read a single article of his I’ve agreed with. If we go with any defense picks in the top 4 rounds, I sure hope it’ll be a safety that is a playmaker. Ahem…Rahim Moore!

  • Stephen

    Just keep in mind, Kiriwan last year went out on a limb and said the Dolphins would draft a player at a position that many did not consider a need. The player he said we would draft? Jared Odrick. Granted we traded down to get him, but still. And Ireland and Sporano both have said they see nothing wrong with building your strength. Were Prince there at 15, I would certainly snap him up, need or not, because he would likely be the best player on the board.

    But then to me, need is not something I look at. What is a glaring hole right now may or may not be a glaring hole down the road. Everyone was clamoring for a D Tackle last year. Were we to draft that tackle, chances are Soliai would not have emerged as well as he did. According to experts and most fans, Oline last year was a strength. Now? Fairly big holes all along the interior. This coming year we could see incognito do really well at center, Jerry fufil the promise we saw in him at the beginning of the year, and Nate garner come in and man the LG spot with ease. Of course, they could all suck ass.

    Even the knowns in the NFL are oftentimes unknowns. That’s why teams should never draft for need, and draft instead on Best player available. If you have 5 equally rated players on your board, do not take the one that fits a need, trade down 5 spots, pick up an extra pick, and take the player that is left. If there is one player that you love that has slipped down some, go up and get him. That’s the way JJ used to work it. That’s the way Belicheck has worked it throughout his Patriots career.