OK, OK, slow down everyone. I know OL is a concern. Put down your pitchforks for just a moment, please. Thank you. Here's a beer. Ahhhhh, that's better. Oops, maybe shouldn't have given alcohol to people with pitchforks. Oh well.
The purpose of this post is simple: I want to figure out what to do at WR, because I keep going back and forth on whether or not to spend high draft picks on the position. I see only 2 viable and plausible options on what to do:
Stay put: We've invested enough monetarily already. We have Wallace, Hartline, Gibson, Matthews, and Binns. Let's allow them to continue the chemistry-building process with Tannehill, as evidenced by the "spread-the-ball-around" statistics demonstrated by the passing unit last year. When the OL is fixed, the passing game will be that much better even with the same players. Do not spend any draft picks on WR - we're OK.
Invest: The only way to spend a high draft pick on WR and have it make sense on the depth chart is to release Brandon Gibson, giving us 1.735 million in cap relief. This may also make sense because Gibson is coming off of a season-ending knee injury and we might look to get more explosive. That way we are looking at a WR who can be a WR3 and still play most of the snaps, provided he stays healthy of course. Now we are looking at a combination of Wallace, Hartline, and/or Kelvin Benjamin/Mike Evans/Marqise Lee…or possibly using a 2nd round pick on someone like Jordan Matthews, Brandin Cooks, or Davante Adams. I suppose it's possible to spend a late round pick on a WR for some red zone capabilities, but I don't see the point in drafting a WR to compete with Matthews and Binns at WR4 and WR5, we need depth at LB, DT, OL, and RB more than WR. If we draft WR, it needs to be high to take the WR3 spot as aforementioned. If we draft anyone for red zone capabilities, it will either be a WR in the 1st 2 rounds or a TE, in my opinion.
I know a lot of what we do at WR will be contingent on what we do at TE. If we get Seferian-Jenkins at #19, part of the skill set we were looking for in a WR is matched by ASJ, so it becomes drastically less likely we spend a pick on WR. However, if we go WR at #19, dare we take a TE on a 3rd round pick? Or vice versa? I keep coming back to this: we were 26th in scoring and rushing offense, and 20th in passing offense. However convoluted statistics are, I still come back to: if we improve the OL, do we become a top-10 offense? If the answer is "yes", then you stay put. If the answer is "no", I think you have to invest.
Free agency will determine a lot as well. If we can address some OL needs via free agency, it gives us much more flexibility when it comes to what positions we can address, especially at #19. I can't see a scenario where the Dolphins don't address concerns along the OL in FA. I don't see how you can come into the draft with 3 or more OL holes and play the draft board optimally. Too myopic to build a long-term winner. It would either cause us to reach to fill a need or cause us to miss out on players that rate higher and could improve the offense more, but due to need, must take the lesser-talented OL instead. Neither one of which is desirable. How does a new Miami Dolphins GM make a stamp on his new team by drafting OL with the 1st 3 picks just to be able to field an entire starting unit?
I, for the life of me, cannot figure out what to do. I think both scenarios have a chance to work: I think Lazor can improve the offense by sheer coaching and play-calling alone, while I also see the failure to get quality playmaking talent, like this draft has, to be an opportunity wasted to put more points on the board and give the offense a long-term playmaking foundation we have lacked for some time.
This is all in the interest of improving a struggling offense, which has plenty of blame to go around. So what are your thoughts on WR, Dolphins community? If you decide to "invest", please be so kind as to tell me who you're investing in. Thanks and Phinsup!