This is my first fanpost and my first Dolphins Mock-up (Please be nice) and it is a seven round mock. This is a pretty extensive (READ: LLOOONNNNGGGGG) mock-up. Sorry, but I mwanted it to be complete. Below is the moves we made (as it relates to trades in this draft) and what I think our best bets are realistically speaking. Anyway, here goes:
PRE-DRAFT TRADE – Miami trades Joey Porter, OLB to Oakland for their 2nd 5th Round Pick (142nd)
TRADE ALERT – Miami trades the #12 Pick for Cincinnati’s 1st Round (21st) and 2nd Round (54th) Picks
107th: Micah Johnson, ILB, 142nd: Robert Johnson, FS
197th: James Starks, RB 204th: Chris Marinelli, OT
The explanations for each round and the alternative options is after the jump. Pictures are of the players I would like to see us get.
So here are the picks.
21st Selection (From Cincinnati) - Miami Takes:
IF He's (SOMEHOW) still available #1: C.J. Spiller, Clemson RB 5-11, 195 Projected 40 Yard Time: 4.34.
IF He's (SOMEHOW) still available#2: Rolando McClain, Alabama ILB 6-4, 256 Projected 40 Yard Time: 4.65
Sean Weatherspoon, OLB - Missouri
Height: 6-1. Weight: 241.
Projected 40 Yard Time: 4.54.
Projected Round (2010): 1-2.
ALTERNATIVES IF DOLPHINS CAN'T GET WEATHERSPOON
Brandon Graham, OLB - Michigan
Height: 6-1. Weight: 263.
Projected 40 Yard Time: 4.72.
Projected Round (2010): 1-2.
NOTES - ROUND 1
DPL3 Rollin made the point in his mock that Cincinnati might want to leapfrog ahead in the draft to shore up their receiving core (which isn't getting much younger) for another run at the AFC North crown. If Dez Bryant slips past Denver, there is no reason to believe we won't take him, but we can do more by trading the pick to Cincinnati. Unlike DPL3, I don't see us getting more than the swap plus Cincy's second round pick (maybe a 6th or 7th) but I still would take that deal. As noted above, I feel we would be served to trade Joey Porter for a pick and I doubt we get better for him than a fifth rounder. Oakland has two but I'll ere on the side of caution and say we get the later one. If Arizona would be willing to part with their 4th rounder (#122) we pull that trigger instead but I don't think it would affect our choice that much. Another option is to package Porter and Thigpen (if Pennington returns) for Arizona's 2nd rounder or multiple picks with at least a 3rd rounder in play but I'm not going to tackle that one here. With Porter gone, Cam Wake would step in for him but some quality depth would be nice and Weatherspoon or Graham could end up spelling or replacing Jason Taylor over time. If McClain falls this far (and hell freezes over while pigs make transatlantic flights) we have to take him, but it won't happen. Don't worry; ILB help is still available throughout the draft. The other pipedream option here is C.J. Spiller but he will be snatched up before we get around to our traded down spot.
43rd Selection - Miami Takes:
Cam Thomas, NT - North Carolina
Height: 6-4. Weight: 331.
Projected 40 Yard Time: 5.14.
Projected Round (2009): 2-3.
ALTERNATIVES IF DOLPHINS DON'T GET THOMAS
Daryl Washington, ILB - TCU (Stats Below)
54th Selection (From Cincinnati) - Miami Takes:
Daryl Washington, ILB - TCU
Height: 6-2. Weight: 226.
Projected 40 Yard Time: 4.59.
Projected Round (2010): 2.
If Miami took Washington earlier: Nate Allen, FS 6-1, 205 or Andre Roberts, WR 5-11, 192, 4.44 or
Jeremy Williams, WR 6-0, 205, 4.54. or Jahvid Best, RB 5-10, 195, 4.39
If Dolphins didn't take Washington
Brandon Spikes, ILB - Florida
Projected 40 Yard Time: 4.74.
Projected Round (2009): 2-3.
NOTES - ROUND 2
After acquiring the 2nd round pick from Cincinnati, Miami can address multiple defensive needs with potential pro-bowlers. With so many teams adopting the 3-4 defense, NT will become a premium position in the NFL and the bidding war on Vince Wilfork will be incredible. This probably moves Miami out of the picture and means we will need to find a stud NT for the future/in case of injury to Ferguson. With Mount Cody showing up at Yokozuna weight for the senior bowl, many GMs will call his discipline and maturity into question. Cam Thomas is easily a future star at NT and may leapfrog Cody on most of the draft boards making him a hot commodity. He is clearly the favorite here, but Miami could bypass him in favor of Torrell Troup (NT, UCF) in round 3 and scoop up a quality player here. I think Thomas is too solid for Parcells to pass up and this NT class gets pretty weak real quick while ILB has some more solid spots to come if Miami should miss out on Washington with the 54th pick. If Thomas is still available at $43, he's the pick. Buffalo might go to the 3-4 and would be a threat with all the rebuilding they need to do. Cleveland is another potential suitor. If Thomas is gone before we get to the podium, Washington becomes a pretty sure bet here with us bypassing McClain. If we take Washington with #43, we may look to bolster the FS position (which will be vacant after Gerbil Wilson gets cut) with Allen (USF, the best FS to likely be available) or nab a WR with potential to be a reliable target for Henne. Roberts is faster and has a better injury history than Williams but both would be good choices here. A final option pick would be Jahvid Best if he is still available. I wouldn't but that's because I have my sights set elsewhere (Open to change). If we miss out on Washington, Brandon Spikes becomes an almost must take pick. Draftsite.com's mock has us taking Spikes here even though Washington is still on the board, but they also have us taking Damian Williams (WR, USC) in the third round and that has almost zero chance in hell of happening.
73rd Selection - Miami Takes:
Aaron Hernandez, TE - Florida (Wouldn't be bad but give me Jimmy Graham if he's here)
Height: 6-3. Weight: 250.
Projected 40 Yard Time: 4.56.
Projected Round (2010): 2.
If Miami didn't get Cam Thomas: Torrell Troup, NT 6-3, 314, 5.34
If Miami didn't pick up an OLB earlier: Koa Misi DE/OLB 6-3, 244 or Eric Norwood OLB 6-1, 250
If he's still available: Jeremy Williams, WR 6-0, 205, 4.54.
If Miami can't get Hernandez:
Jimmy Graham, TE - Miami
Height: 6-6. Weight: 250.
Projected 40 Yard Time: 4.68.
Projected Round (2010): 3-5?
NOTES - ROUND 3
Miami must get a quality NT this offseason and this is likely the last spot they will look at unless they would rather have Linval Joseph (Better pick than Troup in my opinion). If Miami didn't pick up an OLB with its first pick then this is likely the last spot where they can find a quality OLB. Odds are that if Miami didn't get Cam Thomas, they got an OLB and vice versa with the 21st pick so only one should be a need here and I'd rather lean on needing an OLB. Koa Misi (DE/OLB, Utah) would be an ideal choice here as he would fit our hybrid 3-4 scheme perfectly should he still be available; however, Eric Norwood would be a fine consolation pick. Some mocks have Williams still on the board here (I doubt it will happen given the pass-happy state of the NFL) and he would be a potentially great choice but again it would seem highly unlikely. If Aaron Hernandez is still here he would be a fantastic selection for the staff, but I think the upside for Jimmy Graham is good enough to reach for him here if you can't trade down for more late picks. Sparano does seem really impressed with Graham and Jimmy has all the natural tools to be a blockbuster pick. This will likely be the biggest spot for a boom or bust pick for Miami no matter who they choose. This pick has me the most conflicted. Especially the part about passing over the consensus #2 TE in the draft for a guy not ranked in the top 5 at his position on most other boards. Personally, I doubt Hernandez is there at #73 but if he is I think we take him. The other possibility is if Hernandez is still here, there's a good chance that Graham will still be there 34 picks down the road and we could take Graham in the 4th while adding another quality player here. I'll go with the trifecta's evaluation here but Graham would be a BIG target for Henne and we already have a blocking TE. With some teaching, Jimmy Graham could easily be in Pro Bowl discussions in the next 2 years (if the game is still around).
107th Selection - Miami Takes:
Micah Johnson, ILB - Kentucky (GUY IS A BEAST, CAN COVER TEs, has knee injury though)
Height: 6-2. Weight: 254.
Projected 40 Yard Time: 4.71.
Projected Round (2010): 4-5.
Jimmy Graham, TE 6-6, 250, 4.68.
Other Possibilities: John Jerry, OG, 6-5, 332, 5.32 or Robert Johnson, FS 6-2, 200, 4.55
NOTES - ROUND 4
Let me start by saying, I don't trust LeGarrette Blount. There are so many character issues in his past (not just the KO punch he threw) that I have difficulty believing he grew up that much that fast. I think there's a little too much change for it to be all legitimate. I wouldn't be stunned if he reverts to his old ways inside of 3 seasons and I don't want to be stuck with that. However if he falls to the sixth round I could consider him to be worth the risk. If Miami didn't take a TE with the 73rd pick, they will likely take one here. If Jimmy Graham is still available at #107 he is all but a lock for the pick. Miami has likely already addressed the ILB and NT positions and if they haven't nabbed a FS, they can wait until their next pick to get the potential steal of the draft. Should Graham have been snatched up by Miami in the 3rd round, this will be as good a place as any to gamble on the injury recovered Micah Johnson. MJ was an easy top 40 pick before his injury at the end of the season and would have given McClain some competition for best ILB in the draft. If Micah's knee holds up he would be better than Daryl Washington and at the very least a huge improvement over Crowder. This pick (along with Washington) would give us Crowder, Washington, and Johnson as our top 3 ILBs. Compare that with Crowder, Ayodele, and Torbor. Now wipe your mouth. The drool is unbecoming. John Jerry is an outside possibility for this pick but a lot would have to go wrong for him to be the best option. As for Johnson, look below.
142nd Selection (From Oakland) - Miami Takes:
Robert Johnson, FS - Utah
Height: 6-2. Weight: 200.
Projected 40 Yard Time: 4.55.
Projected Round (2010): 4-5.
If Miami took M. Johnson earlier: Dennis Pitta, TE 6-5, 247 or Myron Lewis, FS 6-2, 205, 4.56
If Miami didn't take M. Johnson earlier: Darryl Sharpton, ILB, 6-0, 229, 4.67
NOTES - ROUND 5
I've seen Pitta (TE, BYU) mocked as going just before our next pick (#165) but I doubt he falls past round 5. Pitta is easily the 4th or 5th best TE in this draft and if we miss out on Jimmy Graham (TE, Miami) and have bypassed Aaron Hernandez, we will have to get Pitta here. Additionally, I've seen Johnson (FS, Utah) mocked below pick #180 (We have #165 and #170) so we should be able to hold out for him a little bit. Johnson has been ranked around the #10 safety in the draft and roughly the #6 free safety so he should fall farther than Pitta. If we miss out on Graham we need to pick up Pitta with #142 unless our earlier ILB picks didn't pan out and Sharpton will be more or less the best of what's left but he really isn't a prototypical Parcells guy. If Pitta isn't there, we would have to snatch up Robert Johnson here and take Colin Peek with our next pick. If Rob Johnson is gone and we already got Graham or Hernandez, this pick should be Myron Lewis.
165th Selection – Miami Takes:
Brandon Carter, OG/C Texas Tech
Height: 6-7. Weight: 344.
(This guy may be a little bit INSANE but he is a highly capable and versatile lineman. Would be a good pickup here)
If we haven't drafted a TE yet: Colin Peek, TE 6-5, 250 (Underrated Player, Last Good Choice for TE)
Other Possibilities: Thomas Austin, OG 6-3, 315, 5.12. or Carlton Mitchell, WR 6-4, 212 4.48
170th Selection - Miami Takes:
Carlton Mitchell, WR - South Florida
Height: 6-4. Weight: 212.
Projected 40 Yard Time: 4.48.
Projected Round (2010): 5-6.
Other Possibilities: Keith Toston, RB 6-0, 214, 4.54. or James Starks, RB 6-2 211, 4.55.
or Linval Joseph, NT 6-6, 322, 5.27 or Kevin Haslam, OT 6-5, 295, 5.22
NOTES - ROUND 6
This could be the most important round for GMs throughout the NFL due the depth in this year's draft. If all has gone according to plan, Miami has already picked up an OLB, NT, ILB, TE, ILB, and a FS. This leaves only the WR position as unaddressed from our list of big need playmaking positions. RB and O-Line depth are also concerns that could also be addressed here. If we haven't hit upon a TE yet (can't fathom this possibility but just to be complete) we should grab Colin Peek before he, too goes by the wayside. Without question, Miami needs a #1 WR and if the FO acquires Antrelle Rolle in Free Agency then a WR will likely get taken before this. However, if the FS position is drafted for then a WR might have to wait. Fortunately, Carlton Mitchell has all the tools to be as good as several #1 WRs in the league right now, but will slide due to the extreme WR depth of this year's class. If Brandon Carter seems likely to go soon, he will be a "big" pick in this round. Carter is an absolute monster and can play G and C (Miami would be wise to add capable depth to both). If he gets some good instruction from the O-line coaches (Sparano is a former OL coach) he should make the transition to our scheme quick enough to anchor Henne's blindside with Jake Long for years to come. If Miami gets Carter and Mitchell, this round will be a huge boon for the Front Office. Miami should manage to get at least one of them. If we can't get Carter, Thomas Austin is a fine choice for putting some depth @ guard. If we opt to only take one of the two earlier choices, LeGarrette Blount becomes the next in line and might just be taken first. I think LeGarrette Blount might fall this far and I would probably take him at #165. However, I would take Toston if Blount is gone which is possible, but with the depth at RB position and so many teams having #1 running backs and looking at WR instead we may get the chance at Blount here. If neither is there, James Starks may present himself as the steal of the draft. Call me crazy if you must, but I think if James Starks has made a full recovery from his shoulder surgery he will be a better option for us due to his versatility and superior attitude over Blount and he can potentially be picked up in round 7. If Starks is deemed capable by the Trifecta, you won't see Blount taken here. If his stock rises due to his combine, Starks wouldn't likely be available after pick #170. If Miami goes with Mitchell at #165 and Carter and Blount are gone this pick could turn to Kevin Haslam who is a strong OT that can rotate to OG if needed. Another season like last year could see Haslam as a starter in 2011. However, if we have yet to draft a NT, this pick should end up being Linval Joseph.
197th Selection - Miami Takes:
Brandon Carter, OG/C Texas Tech
Height: 6-7. Weight: 344.
(This guy may be certifiably INSANE but he is a highly capable and versatile lineman. He'd be a steal here.)
Marshall Newhouse, OG TCU
Height: 6-3. Weight: 326.
Projected 40 Yard Time: 5.09.
204th Selection - Miami Takes:
Chris Marinelli, OT Stanford
Height: 6-7. Weight: 303.
Projected 40 Yard Time: 5.12.
Dennis Landolt, OT Penn State
Height: 6-4. Weight: 310.
Projected 40 Yard Time: 5.11.
Projected Round (2010): 6-7.
Drew Davis, OT 6-7, 305, 5.17 or Javarris James, RB 6-0, 215, 4.54 or Erik Cook, C 6-6, 315, 5.30
Kade Weston, NT 6-5, 320, 5.05 or Stafon Johnson, RB 5-11, 214, 4.43 or Brandon Deaderick, DE 6-4, 295, 5.05
NOTES - ROUND 7
If Miami didn't take a RB in the 6th round, they will have more than likely picked up a guard and will still be advised to go after a RB. James Starks is similar to Micah Johnson in that he was one of the best at his position before getting bit by an injury and putting a big question mark on his back. If Starks has recovered to satisfactory levels by the combine he would be a grand theft RB at #197. If he is healthy enough, he needs to be the pick here unless Carter is still on the board. This pick will depend heavily on Starks combine evaluation. A good combine gets him drafted between the 5th and 7th rounds. A bad combine means he tries to catch on in Canada.
If Marinelli falls this far, his run blocking prowess makes him a potential starter for this team since he can play OG as well as OT. Odds are he won't and Landolt will probably be the best fit for Miami at this spot. It's the 7th round so any pick here that ends up playing is a good pick. This front office will likely have anywhere from 3 to 3 dozen choices heading into this round. I'd like to see the Trifecta bring Erik Cook and Kade Weston into camp as undrafted FAs when all is said and done.
If Miami got this draft and only half of the picks panned out, you are talking about monster upgrades to either offense or defense or significant improvement to both over last year. This would easily be classified as an A-rated draft. Some analyst will say it's a terrible draft because we missed out on big names like McClain and Spiller, but it won't get much better than this considering all the holes we need to fill. Just MY opinion. Thoughts?