Running back a priority for the Miami Dolphins in the 2014 NFL Draft?

James Snook-USA TODAY Sports

The performance of the running back position for Miami in 2013 was abysmal. Even with the addition of free agent Knowshon Moreno, will the team search for an upgrade in the draft?

In the pass-happy NFL many seem to have forgotten the importance of the running back position. Sure, the running back should no longer become the fulcrum of any offense when considering they don't exactly having a long shelf life, as the wear and tear really takes its toll on players approaching their late twenties to early thirties. This reason alone has contributed to a decrease in pay at the position.

But that doesn't mean a team shouldn't invest in a tailback. Think of it as an insurance policy for your quarterback. Teams can't expect the quarterback to make throws on every play, especially for a quarterback entering only his third season in the NFL. Likewise, if a pass rusher finds a crack in the offensive line, the running back is the last line of defense for the quarterback.

It's no coincidence that Miami has signed free agent Knowshon Moreno. Whether his success of last year was a by-product of his ability or of playing in the same offence as Peyton Manning (or even a combination of both), the front office have recognized that the team has to improve in this area.

Last year, the best running back on the team was Ryan Tannehill running for his life, and averaging 6 yards over 40 attempts in the process. Those stats don't bode well for Lamar Miller and Daniel Thomas, who averaged 4 and 3.7 yards respectively off 177 and 109 attempts. Both players were drafted, and both players have yet to find success in the NFL.

That doesn't mean the Dolphins should stop drafting running backs. Quite the opposite - the team needs to draft running backs until they hit on a player. In this draft, rounds four to five seems like a perfect place for the team to do that.

Indeed, Terrance West's NFL Draft Diary in the Baltimore Sun alludes to the fact that Dolphins running backs coach Jeff Dixon is a fan of West, and even went as far to suggest to West that he was high on his board of college running backs.

While that could be viewed as an attempt by a player to improve his draft status, it clearly shows this front office and coaching staff are continuing to look for solutions at the position even after the addition of Moreno.

Don't rule out a running back for Miami in the 2014 NFL Draft.

Do you agree? Will the Miami Dolphins add a running back in the draft? Please post your comments below.

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