5 Miami Dolphins questions answered or unanswered after the NFL Draft

Dolphins fans at Hard Rock Stadium [ALLEN EYESTONE/The Palm Beach Post]
Dolphins fans at Hard Rock Stadium [ALLEN EYESTONE/The Palm Beach Post] /

The Miami Dolphins 2022 NFL Draft most likely will not go down in history barring big surprises but entering the weekend, there were questions. Did they get answered?

When the Dolphins finally got on the clock late in round three, many of the prospects that fans were clamoring for were long gone. It was expected. Top offensive tackle prospects were swallowed up as were most other positions. The fact Miami came away with any players they coveted was a surprise in and of itself.

By the time the draft ended, the Dolphins stuck to their four draft picks. They did not trade up or down and did not make moves that cost them draft capital next season. Miami walked away with four prospects.

  • Channing Tindall – LB – Georgia
  • Erick Nzukanma – LB – Texas Tech
  • Cameron Goode – LB – California
  • Skylar Thompson – QB – Kansas State

Did the Miami Dolphins get better, even on paper, after the draft was completed?

This is a hard question to answer because if you believe they got worse, then you are just one of those half-glass individuals. No team gets worse because of who they draft. They simply don’t get better.

In the case of the Dolphins 2022 draft, Miami added players that should help and develop. They added players that fit rolls on both sides of the ball and that is important.

Miami entered the draft with very few needs so they had the flexibility to add players they believe in.

Did the Miami Dolphins add starting-caliber players?

Looking at this year’s draft class, it is hard to see any single player becoming a full-time starter this year but the Dolphins were not in need of starters right now.

Channing Tindall may be the closest of the bunch to see the field consistently game to game but he too has to develop before he becomes an every-play linebacker. Erik Ezukanma should get time on special teams but this receiver is more about providing quality depth to a WR unit that is thin the more you look at it.

Later in the draft, Miami took Cameron Goode who, for now, seems like he will be used as a pass-rush specialist given his talents.

Did the Miami Dolphins fill needs?

First, we have to define their “needs”. Miami entered the draft needing linebacker, offensive line help, depth at wide receiver, and running back.

The first, wide receiver, was addressed and Ezukanma should develop into a valuable asset but he will still be the guy that plays behind Tyreek Hill and Jaylen Waddle. He also will likely be the guy that replaces DeVante Parker as they have similar skills although Ezukanma is a lot faster.

Miami didn’t help themselves along the offensive line or at running back. The Dolphins passed on both positions during the draft. That surprised a lot of fans but considering how the boards were set and the draft unfolded, it seems that some of the players the Dolphins wanted, simply were not available. The Dolphins stuck to their own boards rather than reach.

At linebacker, the Dolphins got better but the players they added are considered depth players for right now. Of the two drafted, Tindall should have the bigger impact both immediately and in the future only because his skill set appears to be higher.

Miami Dolphins
ATHENS, GEORGIA – OCTOBER 10: Channing Tindall (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images) /

Should the Miami Dolphins expect year one impacts?

The short answer is no but the Dolphins didn’t really need to draft impact players this draft.

The Dolphins didn’t draft early enough to take players who should be day-one starters. Tindall, again, is the closest to being able to contribute early and often but to think he will start from day one is a stretch. By mid-season, he should be playing a lot more and have a bigger role but he definitely has a place on the defense given his speed and athleticism. Because of that, Tindall should see extensive playing time but I wouldn’t pencil him in as a starter just yet.

Ezukanma, on the other hand, has an opportunity to get a good bit of playing time if he can stay ahead in the Dolphins WR room. He has potential and that, for now, is enough, but a year-one impact is asking for a lot. Still, there should be enough opportunity for him to see the field.

Did the Miami Dolphins address the future?

This final question is one that can’t be answered just yet but on paper, they did a pretty good job of filling some holes and addressing some needs for the future.

Tindall should develop into a starter and eventually replace Elandon Roberts. It is hard to see where Cameron Goode will actually fit given the extension to Emmanuel Ogbah and the existence of Jaelan Phillips. He will provide depth but I don’t see a firm role in the future.

At WR, Ezukanma should develop and eventually get more playing time and could have a specific role on the offense. Many fans believe that he can develop into a “Deebo Samuel” type role but that’s a little much to hope for at this time. There is an opportunity for him to grow and that is a start.

Skylar Thompson is a player we have yet to mention and that is because he has no real place on the roster right now. It would be absolutely shocking for Miami to carry three quarterbacks into September which means that Thompson will get cut.

His future, however, is on the practice squad and he very well could become Tua Tagovailoa’s backup after the 2022 season when Teddy Bridgewater leaves next off-season.