The NFL Draft will kick-off here in about 10 minutes or so and Miami Dolphins GM Dennis Hickey needs to have a big day. This is the area where former GM Jeff Ireland did well, drafting good talent on day three. Hickey so far has done one thing, addressed the offensive line. With first round pick Ja’Wuan James and third rounder Billy Turner, Hickey is hoping that he has given HC Joe Philbin the talent to improve a horrible offensive line from a year ago.
Sandwiched between the two lineman is a smallish WR. Jarvis Landry is being called a smaller version of WR Anquan Boldin. He does not have the size and lacks pure speed but the consensus is that Landry is the best pick of the Miami Dolphins thus far. A sure handed WR, he dropped only one pass in 2013 at LSU, Landry will push Brandon Gibson, Rishard Matthews, and Armon Binns for the starting the job and/or playing time.
Thus far the Dolphins have managed to pick safe players. Normally that would be a smart move but they are also reaching for players that they could have much later. In the case of James, many teams had mid to late 2nd round grades on him and despite some fans believing that Kansas City would have taken him shortly after Miami in round one, my sources tell me that James wasn’t rated as a first round talent with them either. Regardless of whether he was a reach or not, the Dolphins will expect him to challenge Shelley Smith for the staring RG position.
In round two Hickey began to show some signs of “getting” it when he traded down twice adding both a 4th and 5th round pick to his coffer. He then traded his first 4th round pick, number 116 to the Raiders to move up to the top of three to draft Turner. It was an unnecessary move as Turner was rated a mid to late 3rd or 4th rounder and could likely have fallen to Miami’s pick at 116 let alone their own pick in round three.
The Dolphins have failed to address the linebacker position and once again have failed to land a top TE prospect that can step in and play day one. In addition, the Dolphins have not addressed cornerback, safety, or RB, a position that many thought would be a priority for the team entering the draft. Some believed that Hickey was moving up in round three to draft Alabama runner Tre Mason. The Dolphins are expected to address more lineman on day two.
The team has a pick in each of the final four rounds of the draft with an extra selection in round five.