Like many of us the time between the Superbowl and the Combine, Prodays, Free Agency and Draft seems like an eternity. I have been doing a bit of reading in the meantime and have come up with my own picture of an off season for our beloved Miami Dolphins. First I will try to tackle free agency. (That is no illusion to us picking up a tackle.) Then I will try and cover a few rounds of the draft.
As most of us have realized, QB is the most important piece of the puzzle. Something that has eluded the Dolphins since the Dan the Man Marino retired. And lets face it, ground and pound offenses just come up short in a league where the rules have been changed to protect Tom Brady. (Insert sarcasm here) Now most of us, myself included, have our reservations about both the top Free Agent QB's. Peyton Manning and Matt Flynn. I think Flynn maybe a good QB but I don't see him as great. If Flynn comes here it will be on Philbin's say so, and I see Ross too far gone on Peyton to really consider this. However this is our second option should Peyton go elsewhere. However I do believe Peyton comes to Miami. We have wonderful weather for rehabilitation and he will see another great opportunity to go up against Brady/Belichick twice a year, as well as many believe Miami to be a few short steps away from being a REAL contender. Plus the Wife likes Miami a lot and they already own a condo here and have friends in the area. (Those kind of intangibles are not on any contract.) Speaking of contracts, Peyton has already said he is willing to take a low money guarantee contract. Which is another reason he is more appealing than Flynn who will be looking for his first big Pay Day.
With the injury riddled Manning we need a little more insurance for him. Bringing me to our next Free Agency need O-Line. Miami would be amiss to think it is fine on O-line, but I don't see another lineman in our first round future. (Ireland would need to triple his security staff) I think we take the plunge and grab Ben Grubbs. That moves us around a little bit and makes our O-line look as follows:
(From left to right)
Long, Grubbs, Pouncey, Ingognito, Murtha/Jerry
Another possible splash I would like us to make in Free Agency is WR and I think we may be able to pull in Reggie Wayne on the cheap if Peyton is here. I know he is old but another outside threat across from Marshall as a stop-gap til next year is always good.
Now I know we need to restructure a few contracts and Brandon Marshal, Jake Long and Yermiah Bell are the perfect targets for restructure. And I think all of them would be willing to if it meant bringing this team into relevance again.
An in house move I would like discuss is Charles Clay, he needs to stay healthy, and we need to use him better in the TE seem threat than we have. Hillard is the FB and Clay needs to be in at TE and I think Philbin will see this and ustilize him and Fasano in double TE sets more. Fasano is good blocking TE. Another change I want to see on Defense is in the Line Backer corp. please don't flip your lids but I can see Koa Misi moving to the middle and moving Burnett to the outside. Burnett can still be a leader from this spot but I think both his and Misi's talents would be optimized by switching to this.
Here we need to address DE. I think we have the LB's to play either defense but we need another pass rusher. Cameron Wake is awesome but he can't be a one man wrecking crew and we need to fix the hole that Jason Taylor has left. For this I see Melvin Ingram. He has talent and work ethic and I think he is going to explode in the NFL. Put him on the DL as follows:
Wake, Starks Oddrick, Ingram
I think moving forward we need to look at safety. Bell is getting old and has begun his decline. Mark Baron could be a steal this year. With missing senior bowl and possibly missing the combine due to injury his 1rst round stock is dropping like a rock. He may fall square into our laps. I know he has some mild ethics issues but I think a hard nosed coach like Philbin and Coyle with correct that.
Time for a possible QB of the future. Let's face it. Peyton is going to be a stop-gap for the next 2-3 years if he stays healthy. I think selling the farm for RG3 this year is not worth it if we get Manning or Flynn. But here is a good spot for us to pick up someone with great natural athleticism and one huge arm. If we have Manning and the coaching staff we have acquired I think decision making and a few mechanics are totally correctable. So if you haven't guessed already I am proposing Brock Osweiler
This may not be the flashiest version of the off-season but I think it is doable and gives us the best chances now and in the future.