Forget center, Miami Dolphins need to make Troy Fautanu their number one priority in the draft

2023 Pac-12 Championship - Oregon v Washington
2023 Pac-12 Championship - Oregon v Washington / Ric Tapia/GettyImages

The Miami Dolphins fanbase has been obsessed with Oregon center, Jackson Powers-Johnson but Troy Fautanu is who the Dolphins need more.

There is a lot to like about Powers-Johnson but the Dolphins need something more than a center. They need to secure the future and Troy Fautanu provides fixes to the offensive line for the present and the future.

Fautanu is one of the top-rated offensive linemen in this year's NFL Draft. He is strong, smart, and physical, and plays both guard and tackle. The Dolphins will enter this offseason with needs for at least three line positions and Fautanu has the versatility to solve one of them long-term and another in the short-term.

The key to all of this is Terron Armstead. We have to assume at this point that Armstead will return. With Armstead at left tackle and Fautanu at left guard, the Dolphins are filling a big hole at the left guard position and a potential HOF tackle will be providing incredible insight and tutoring to a youngster who can then slide outside in another year when Armstead does actually retire or is cut.

For 2024, Fautanu can play guard and then move back outside. At the NFL Combine, Fautanu said the biggest question he gets is where he prefers to play. He told the media he prefers tackle but will play wherever teams need him. The Dolphins need him to start at guard and then move outside.

The last time Miami did this, Laremy Tunsil provided strength at guard while Branden Albert played LT and then a year later, Tunsil took over outside.

This buys the Dolphins another year before they need to add another guard to potentially replace Fautanu on the inside. By then, maybe another draft pick can take over or the Dolphins could develop a guard to start in 2025.

At center, the is a need and Powers-Johnson makes sense but the Dolphins do not tend to put much effort into drafting centers. They have passed on top prospects at the position in the last few drafts and while it is a need this year, it doesn't fit Chris Grier's annual M.O.

While the Dolphins have plenty of needs to address in round one, the best option may be the option that can fill a hole at left tackle that the Dolphins know is coming. They can fix that before it becomes a hole at all. Fautanu is that fix.