Two NFL Draft experts believe that Miami will go with a tight end in the first round, but the Dolphins should use this pick on the defensive side of the ball.
The Miami Dolphins have the 22nd pick in the 2017 NFL Draft. It’s widely believed that the Dolphins will go top-heavy on the defensive side of the ball this year, but that is not stopping some from linking them to a tight end in the first round. While tight end is an important position that needs to be addressed somewhere, Miami should use their first rounder on a defender.
Two NFL Draft “experts”, and I use that word loosely, Todd McShay and Mel Kiper Jr., both believe that Miami will take University of Miami standout David Njoku with the 22nd pick as James Walker of ESPN, who covers the Dolphins, reports. As a die-hard Hurricanes fan myself, I’m normally ecstatic anytime the Dolphins select a former Cane. I would even go as far as to say that Njoku is every bit worth his first round projection. The University of Miami has a history of producing terrific tight ends, and Njoku is no exception. The Dolphins priorities, however, lie on the other side of the ball, particularly on the front seven. If Miami wants to build off of last season’s success they need to start there.
The reasoning behind Miami possibly taking a tight end this early is because Njoku is the second best rated tight end coming out of this year’s draft behind O.J. Howard of Alabama. Much like Njoku, Howard’s stock continues to rise, and there’s now a consensus that he won’t be available by the time Miami selects. After Njoku, there is a big drop-off at tight end. The free agent class this offseason is pretty thin as well.
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Adam Gase no doubt wants to get his tight ends more involved in the offense for 2017. He could view Dion Sims to be the guy, but he is an unrestricted free agent. MarQueis Gray did sign a two-year extension already with Miami, but in a backup role.
Despite the limited choices, I don’t think Miami needs to panic for a tight end. If they can find one in free agency without breaking the bank then great. But I’m not willing to pay top dollar for someone like Martellus Bennett. They could easily re-sign Sims or find value elsewhere.
As for the draft, if Miami is going to address the defensive side of the ball as expected then they need to show it starting with their first pick. If Njoku is somehow available in the second round as was originally projected before his stock grew then I could see Miami taking him there. I do see him becoming a very good player in the NFL. I just think the Dolphins have more dire needs at the moment. Free agency could change things though.
Do you agree that Miami should pass on a tight end with their first pick or do you think they should snag Howard or Njoku if either player should fall to them?