The Dolphins are in a rare position this off season. They find themselves with one of the highest cap spaces (over 40 million after signing their upcoming rookie class) and nine draft picks in the 2013 NFL Draft. This means that Miami has the potential (notice I said potential) to do some real damage in both Free Agency and in late April. If the football Gods decide to shine down upon the Phins and all the right cards fall into place, here is my Miami Dolphins’ 2013 dream draft. Keep in mind that these are the players I’d like to see Miami draft, and the likelihood of these players all falling into Miami’s hands are unlikely, but hey a guy can dream right?
Round #1, pick 12: Dion Jordan, DE Oregon – I see the Dolphins grabbing either Wallace or Jennings (most likely Jennings) in FA this off season, and I think that is a wise move. You can never be positive drafting a wide receiver (unless its Calvin Johnson) as the Dolphins have showed in the past (Ted Ginn Jr.). I see the Dolphins safely filling a major hole, defensive end. Look for the Phins to move unproductive DE Jason Odrick inside to DT, and drafting Dion Jordan, possibly the scariest player in the draft. Jordan is 6 foot 7, 243 lbs of pure athlete. He could come in and start along side Wake and give the Dolphins one of the best pass rushing tandems in the NFL.
Round #2, pick 11: Tyler Eifert, TE Notre Dame - This is why I titled this article my “dream draft.” The likelihood of Eifert or Ertz falling into the Dolphins’ lap at the eleventh pick in round two is slim to none. But, it could happen. I definitely think one of the two will slip into the second round, the question is how far into the second? If the Dolphins find themselves picking here with either of these two TE’s left, they would be foolish not to grab one. In a league that is run by big strong tight ends, Miami better find one fast in order to keep up with the elite NFL teams. Eifert would cause all sorts of defensive problems, and would give sophomore QB Ryan Tannehill a big friendly body down in the red zone and in the middle of the field.
Round #2, pick 24 (from Indianapolis): Justin Hunter, WR Tennessee - Again, I am assuming the Dolphins will grab a WR in FA, but I see them taking Hunter here if he is still on the board. He is everything Tannehill needs. He has a huge frame at 6 foot 4, 200 lbs. He has good speed, and he has incredible hands. Put him on the field with a big TE, Jennings opposite of him, and Davone Bess in the slot and the Phins go from having an average offense to one of the most dynamic offenses in the league.
Round #3, pick 15: Desmond Trufant, CB Washington - Besides Dee Milliner out of Alabama, I think Trufant may end up being the best corner in the draft, its in his genes (both brothers Marcus and Isiah are NFL cornerbacks). Trufant is a great tackler, and has the strength to stay close with the best wide receivers in the league. Let’s face it, Sean Smith just is not consistent enough, and I don’t think FA has the talent at a price the Dolphins can afford to pay. Drafting Trufant would give the Dolphins a starting cornerback to help S Reshad Jones in the secondary.
Round #3, pick 20: Arthur Brown, OLB Kansas State - Miami’s linebackers are getting old. Dansby is on his way out, and Koa Misi won’t be able to cover the whole field by himself. Olivier Vernon is more of a hybrid DE than a true LB, so I think the Dolphins should draft Brown. The need for linebackers this year is not as high as usual, so the Dolphins could draft Brown a lot lower than usual. He could come in and learn from Dansby and eventually take over as the head linebacker for the Fins.
Round #4, pick 14: Marcus Lattimore, RB South Carolina - This may be the most intriguing player in the entire 2013 NFL Draft. Yes, this is the same Lattimore we all saw shatter his leg in what may have been the saddest football injury of all time (Theisman wins the most gruesome award). What people don’t know about Lattimore is that he is a freak, both athletically and mentally (in a good sense). He will do whatever it takes to play football again, and would have been the number one RB in the draft if he had not been injured. I am praying he falls into the fourth round as is projected, and that Miami will have the guts to take him. If they do, they may find themselves with the steal of the draft.
Round #5, pick 13: Dustin Hopkins, K Florida State - A kicker?! In round 5? Yes. Dan Carpenter did not have the best year in 2012. As a fan, nothing worries me more than having a game come down to a field goal, and being unsure if the kicker will make it. Hopkins is the best kicker in the draft, and comes from Florida State (who gave us Sebastian Janikowski). There is little doubt Hopkins will be available, and he would Miami a starting kicker that we can be confident in. Three made field goals last year and the Dolphins would have been a playoff team, just something to think about.
Round #7, pick 11: Best Available OT - Whether or not Miami re-signs Jake Long, the offensive line can always be bolstered with another big body. With the Fins using their earlier picks on skill players, I see Miami playing it safe with their last two picks and boosting both sides of the line.
Round #7, pick 18 (from Dallas): Best Available DT – I’m praying the Dolphins re-sign Randy Starks, but I don’t think they will. Who knows how Odrick will do inside, and taking a solid DT here to compete with him would be a good move.