2012 NFL Draft -- Analysis of DEs/OLBs

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The Miami Dolphins sacked opposing QBs 41 times during the 2011 Season — tied for 10th most sacks out of all NFL teams.  8.5 of those 41 sacks were by Cameron Wake.  Only 1 of those 41 sacks came from Koa Misi.  And, 7 of those 41 sacks came from Jason Taylor, who retired in the off season.

Oct 13, 2010; Huntington, WV, USA; Marshall Thundering Herd defensive end Vinny Curry (99) blocks a pass from Central Florida Knights quarterback Jeff Godfrey (2) at Joan C. Edwards Stadium. Central Florida defeated Marshall 35-14. Mandatory Credit: Mark Zerof-US PRESSWIRE

The Dolphins need more pressure and sacks coming from the strong side of the defense (opposite of Wake) — to include replacing the production of Jason Taylor.  So, Jeff Ireland acquired free agent Jamaal Westerman, who racked up 3.5 sacks for the Jets last season.  Westerman and Misi will likely not be enough.  Thus, the Dolphins are expected to add a rush hybrid defensive end/outside linebacker (DE/OLB) in the 2012 NFL Draft.  In fact, it will likely be a key position of need.  I have done a Analysis of the DEs/OLBs available in the draft and will summarize the results in this article.  My hope is to provide you with some handy charts to reference on Thursday, Friday, and Saturday of this draft week.

It is worth noting that I found that the 2012 NFL Draft has plenty of prospects for the taking at this position.  Using NFLDraftScout.com, there were eight (8) DEs/OLBs who could be selected in first round and another five (5) who could be selected in the second round.

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