"Emmanuel Ogbah’s future with the Miami Dolphins is in question, and his future decision could influence how the team approaches the 2022 Draft."
Over the past two seasons, the Miami Dolphins have benefitted from the exceptional performances of defensive end Emmanuel Ogbah, who has been a key player on the defensive side of the ball.
Ogbah has recorded nine sacks in back-to-back seasons since joining the Dolphins as a free agent in March 2020, signing a two-year, $15 million deal after featuring in ten games for the Kansas City Chiefs in 2019.
The Chiefs went on to win the Super Bowl, although Ogbah had been ruled out with a pectoral injury and missed the team’s entire playoff run, with the Lagos, Nigeria native unable to show the team what he was truly capable of.
The Dolphins, however, were able to see that in the subsequent seasons but now it looks as if the 28-year-old could find himself playing for his fourth NFL team in what will be his fifth season in the league.
Franchise tag decisions need to be made by NFL teams this week, and the for the Dolphins it appears as if tight end Mike Gesicki will be the recipient, with the tag for a defensive end sitting at a whopping $20.1 million – seemingly too rich for the Dolphins, who would prefer to spend the money on the big-bodied impact receiving Gesicki.
Ogbah could still sign a new contract with the Miami Dolphins, but all indications are that he will test the free agent market first – generally getting a feeler for his worth and potentially to find a destination that would get him closer to winning a Super Bowl.
If Ogbah opts to leave Florida, there is the real possibility that the Dolphins could address the deficit through the upcoming draft, with a number of interesting edge rushers in this class.
One such player who could be available to pick when the Dolphins’ name is called at pick 29, which originally belonged to the San Francisco 49ers, is Jermaine Johnson II out of Florida State.
Johnson II has great size at 6-foot-5, 262lbs and is coming off of an exceptional senior season with the Seminoles, where he registered 70 tackles (33 solo), 17.5 tackles for loss, two passes broken up and two forced fumbles (one returned for a touchdown).
The Eden Prairie, Minnesota native has shown he is adept at putting pressure on opposing quarterbacks, with 11.5 sacks and 12 QB hurries in 12 games last season – performances and production that saw him named the ACC Defensive Player of the Year.
He was also named First Team All-ACC as well as a WCFF First Team All-American in his one and only season in northern Florida, having transferred after two years with the Georgia Bulldogs.
If the Miami Dolphins are keen to add an impact player on the defensive side of the game, filling the void potentially being left by Ogbah, then Johnson II would certainly be a logical selection late in the first round.
Offensive tackle will likely be the top priority for the Dolphins in this year’s draft class, giving third-year quarterback Tua Tagovailoa better protection, but if Johnson II is still there at 29 and Ogbah has already moved in, it could be the most sensible move to get potentially an immediate starter on the edge instead.