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MassanuttenRef’s Phins Mock Draft — Round 1 — Trade Value Lesson


In my last article, I gave the my opinion of what the Dolphins will do in the first round of this year’s NFL Draft.  I mocked a first round trade between the Dolphins and the Bears — the Dolphins trade their first round pick for the Bears first round, second round and third round picks.  The article received several comments that this trade was unrealistic — the Bears are giving up too much for the Dolphins 15th pick.  So, where did I come up with the components of this pick?  

Well, the components are actually not wholely my opinion, nor is it rocket science.   Back on February 24th, I wrote an article about the Dolphins trade down possibilities in the 2011 NFL Draft.  Before I continue with my Phins Mock Draft for 2011, I thought it might be appropriate to repeat this article to remind my readers how the trades come about — especially in this year where trades cannot include roster players.  So, here is a MassanuttenRef’s Phin Mock DraftRound 1Trade Value Lesson.  I hope this will help explain things and prepare you for the upcoming draft.


PhinPhanatic Article — February 24, 2011 — Trade Down Possibilities for the Dolphins — by MassanuttenRef

Many are thinking that the Dolphins should trade down from the 15th pick in the 2011 NFL Draft. This includes yours truly. In my last article, I wrote about the Dolphins trading their 15th pick for Atlanta’s 27th (1st Round), 59th (2nd Round), and 123rd (4th Round) picks. So, what are the possibilities for the Dolphins trading down in this year’s draft? And, how are the trades put together?

Well, I did some research and found that each pick in the draft is assigned a numerical trade value — there is such a Trade Value Chart posted at  The values are then used to combine draft picks to make a deal.  However, sometimes trades can include players currently on the roster making things more complicated – like last year, the Dolphins traded their 1st round pick to San Diego for the Chargers 1st and 2nd round picks plus Tim Dobbins.  This year, such a trade with a roster player will not be possible unless a new CBA is signed in the next two months before the draft in April.  This kind of makes things easier for us fans to scheme.  By the way, I don’t know who or how the values in this chart were derived.  But, I do know they have been used for years as guidelines when putting together trades.

I took the latest order of draft picks in the 2011 Draft (up to the 6th round) and combined them with their trade values in a spreadsheet to examine the possibilities.  This chart is shown below which you can click on to enlarge in a new tab or window (feel free to copy it and share).  I am sure that Jeff Ireland and Tony Sparano have such a handy chart for this year’s draft.

Disclaimer: Please note that I am only human.  So, it is possible that I made a mistake.  Please let me know if something is not quite right and I will promptly correct and repost.  Hey Jeff and Tony, that means you guys too.  I am sure you guys want us fans to have the right cheat sheet when the draft kicks off.

Please also note that I will repost this chart in another article closer to the draft in the event a new CBA is signed and the draft order changes due to trades – you know like Ronnie Brown and the Dolphins 15th pick for Carolina’s 1st pick so that the Dolphins can draft Blaine Gabbert.

So, here’s how to use the chart.  The Dolphins 15th pick has a numerical trade value of 1,050.  If they were to make a deal with the Falcons, the Falcons would have to give up their 27th, 59th, and 123rd picks with respective values of 680 + 310 + 49 = 1,039.  Thus, the numerical deal is Atlanta’s three picks worth 1,039 for the Dolphins one pick worth 1,050 – maybe, Ireland can get Atlanta to throw in a 7th rounder to make the numerical values more equal.  Another simpler example is the Dolphins trade the 15th pick for the Seahawks 25th and 57th picks – this is an even swap with an equivalent numerical value of 1,050.  If you are wondering, the 1st pick has a value of 3,000 – all the Dolphins picks in this year’s draft do not have that value — sorry folks.  It should be noted that the Jests are in italics because Sexy Rexy would have to pull a Ditka trading nearly all their picks to get the Dolphins 15th pick.

The picks and values for each team that are in red are those numerically necessary to obtain the Dolphins 15th pick without the Dolphins giving up any additional picks of their own – which I think (or hope) they will be reluctant to do because of all their numerous offensive needs.  This means, the 25th pick is the first trade down opportunity for the Dolphins for solely their 15th pick.  But, for example, the Dolphins could trade the 15th pick and one of their 7th round picks for the Saints 24th and 56th picks.  There are many other possibilities that one can come up with.  I tried to summarize some with those in red.

I hope that you will enjoy using the chart to dream up the possibilities. I  personally would love a trade with the Packers that would net the Dolphins four or five additional draft picks.  This would be lots of draftees to fill the holes on offense and even add some depth on defense.