Brady Podloski | April 14th, 2020
The Miami Dolphins finished the season off strong, which was a result of the team’s head coach Brian Flores. Going forward, this team made significant signings to speed up the rebuilding window. Notably, the team made considerable signings with Ereck Flowers, Shaq Lawson, Emmanuel Ogbah, Jordan Howard, Kyle Van Noy, and Byron Jones. This team has completely shifted its defense, by adding short term players to high impact positions such as edge, corner, and linebacker.
The Dolphins have 14 picks in this year’s draft and need to set the foundation for the future. In a word, they need a franchise quarterback that can lead this team out of the bottom half of the league where they have dwelled for years. As well, the team needs to fix their offensive line, specifically tackle. The guard position has less priority mainly due to the signing of Flowers for left guard, whereas the other guard position there can be a competition between Shaq Calhoun and Michael Deiter. Overall, the Dolphins need to select the best available players for most of their picks.
To help with this mock draft, I used The Draft Network mock draft simulator.
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Round 1, Pick 5: Justin Herbert, QB, Oregon
Quarterback is an obvious need and I also suspect Josh Rosen will be getting traded during the draft. This pick is trying to get a franchise quarterback, either in Herbert or Tua Tagovailoa. I think the pick will be Herbert for three reasons. The primary reason is injury concerns, Tua has had an injury every year he played in college. Secondly, Chan Gailey is the godfather of Herbert, so there is an established relationship there already. Lastly, Gailey was recently installed as the offensive coordinator, where in the past he has used run-pass-option and boot action, something Herbert would excel in.
Herbert has some of the best tools in the draft, with a cannon for an arm and sneaky good athleticism. However, one of Herbert’s downfalls is his hasty decision making. With time and a veteran player showing him the ropes, he can improve the decision making elements to his game. Overall, I think the best comparison for Herbert is Josh Allen, because of the similarities in the game styles and arm talent. Herbert has better accuracy than Allen in my opinion, but for more on Herbert be sure to check out his scouting report.
Round 1, Pick 18: Javon Kinlaw, IDL, South Carolina
I know the Dolphins don’t have a need at defensive tackle, however, at pick 18 it is about getting the best possible available player. Kinlaw fell due to the run on cornerback, tackle, and quarterback. The starting three defensive linemen would be Kinlaw, Godchaux, and Christian Wilkins, and that would be an elite front three for the interior.
Kinlaw offers some of the highest upside for any prospect in this draft. His elite first step, quickness, and underrated passing rushing moves make him a candidate for being a 10 sack per year player. Currently, he struggles with his pad level staying too high against the run, something that can be improved with time. In a word, Kinlaw is fun to watch.
Javon Kinlaw is incredibly explosive for a player w/ his size (6-foot-6, 310) and length. There are many reps where he fires off the ball, extends his long arms and uses power to create pressure. With technique refinement/consistency, Kinlaw will be a fantastic 3-tech in the NFL. pic.twitter.com/aSVmja70xX
— Daniel House (@DanielHouseNFL) January 17, 2020
Round 1, Pick 26: Josh Jones, LT, Houston
The Dolphins traded Laremy Tunsil to gain a bevy of picks, thus picking a tackle in round one fills a significant need. Jones is perhaps the biggest boom-bust offensive tackle prospect. The concerns stem from the poor level of competition, yet he has shown elite level play in the run and pass. However, with likely limited OTAs and minicamp due to COVID-19 will his play translate to the NFL as a rookie? I can’t say for certain, but I think Jones is worth the first-round pick. For more on Jones be sure to check out his scouting report.
Round 2, Pick 39: Grant Delpit, SAF, LSU
There is a lack of consensus on Delpit, primarily because of his poor tackling in 2019. Whereas in his 2018 film, he was a drastically different player worthy of a top 15 pick. I think a lingering ankle injury hindered his elite playmaking. The fact remains that he is a highly versatile safety with great intelligence, play recognition, coverage skills, and leadership. Whoever takes Delpit is getting a starting safety with high upside and game changing ability, but they may have to live with some missed tackles.
#LSU S Grant Delpit is without a doubt going to be Top 5 prospect for me going into next year.
This was back-to-back plays vs. Auburn: pic.twitter.com/2s9QbCXXL7
— Trevor Sikkema (@TampaBayTre) April 17, 2019
Round 2, Pick 56: Lucas Niang, RT, TCU
Dolphins also have a need at right tackle and Niang offers high upside. He tore his hip labrum in October, which ended his 2019 season. With his injury about 80% of NFL players who have a hip-related injury or something similar to Niang’s injury can return and play at the same level they played at before. Niang has played at a high level, holding his own against Chase Young in 2018. If he can get back to this level of play, he’s a steal. He is one of my favorite draft prospects because he’s going to be a starting tackle at a huge discount.
Round 3, Pick 70: Cam Akers, RB, Florida State
Akers is an underrated running back who can split the load with Howard. Akers represents an all around talent, who has great power, burst, contact balance, and excellent vision. His best runs are when he can make one cut and plants his foot in the ground and gets upfield. Additionally, I trust Akers to catch the ball, as he had 53 receptions over the past two years at Florida State. Overall, I think by year two with Akers’ ability to catch and manage a workload, he can be the bell cow running back and replace Howard.
.@FSUFootball RB Cam Akers went NUTS today and broke off two TD runs of at least 54 yards, including this 63-yarder. #MustSeeACC pic.twitter.com/hV6eQzXNDg
— ACC Digital Network (@theACCDN) November 4, 2017
Round 4 Pick 141: Tyler Johnson, WR, Minnesota
Johnson is a viable wide receiver who has all around talent. Johnson isn’t elite in any category, but he gets open and catches the ball. The difficulty with Johnson is that he lacks speed and quickness, but he’s got great play recognition allowing him to find the soft spots in zones to gain additional yardage. As a playmaker, he had elite production with 86 receptions, 1,318 yards, and 13 touchdowns. I think he can be a contributor in his second or third year.
Round 5, Pick 153: Anfernee Jennings, EDGE, Alabama
In a 3-4 system, you need depth at the edge position. Jennings is a powerful player who doesn’t have the quickness one desires for an edge player. However, Jennings gets to the quarterback, as he had eight sacks this past year. He’s also an excellent run stuffer as he 12.5 tackles for loss in 2019. He can be a high-end depth and special teams players.
Round 5, Pick 154: Javelin Guidry, CB, Utah
Teams need starting nickel cornerbacks with changes in today’s NFL offenses. Guidry is a steal as he has the upside to be a fine starting nickel. He ran an unofficial 4.29 forty yard dash and is ridiculously quick. He needs to polish his zone and man coverage skills, but if he had a year to develop behind Eric Rowe, I’d feel confident starting him. As well, he has special teams upside covering punts and kicks off.
Round 5, Pick 173: Lamar Jackson, CB, Nebraska
Jackson is a big cornerback at 6’2 and 208 lbs and is lengthy and physical. He plays well in the press-man scheme but he lacks the athleticism and explosiveness to be elite. Jackson is a project with high upsides because of his size, but if he puts it all together, he can be a starting corner in the league. I think he would be a great back up to Jones as he could learn technique from him.
Round 6, Pick 185: Trey Adams, OT, Washington
Adams has the size to be a dominant tackle at 327 lbs and 6’8″. Once thought of as a first-round tackle, injuries have completely derailed his career. He played at a high level for a few games but continued to get re-injured. He can serve as a backup tackle, who if he can stay healthy, might be a serviceable player.
Round 7, Pick 227: Omar Bayless, WR, Arkansas State
A depth piece for the Dolphins receiving core, Bayless had elite production against the lower-end competition with 92 receptions for 1,653 yards and 17 touchdowns in 2019. Bayless has great ball skills and makes some spectacular catches; however, he lacks the athleticism to be a starter in the NFL. He should back up DeVante Parker and has a chance to be on the roster.
Round 7, Pick 246: Tremayne Anchrum, OT, Clemson
Anchrum was the starting right tackle for the Clemson Tigers on their National Championship run. However, he doesn’t have the balance to go one on ones at right tackle and would be better as a guard. Overall, I’m not sure if Anchrum can make the transition to guard, but he is worth the shot to see if he can be a backup.
Round 7, Pick 251: Charlie Heck, OT, North Carolina
Heck has the athleticism to be a swing tackle, as he had the versatility to play almost everywhere on the offensive line. He 6’8″ and 309 lbs and has good pass blocking sets. I’m surprised he lasted this long as I think he has the potential to be a long term back up option for Niang.
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