The NFL Draft is a week away. That’s right, one week until the end of the non-stop 2017 NFL mock drafts (but just 9 days away from the first 2018 mock drafts making an appearance), the endless debate over draft grades and values, and talk of trades up or back in the selection process. That also means we are just a week away from the Miami Dolphins adding the player they want the most at the 22nd overall position (assuming they do not do one of the aforementioned trades).
At this point in the spring, all of us have the players they love and the players from whom they want the Dolphins to stay away. Who is your perfect player for the Dolphins? Who do you not want to see in aqua next year, no matter what?
And, the rules of the game are that the team has to have a chance to select the player. Myles Garrett is not going to be on the board when Miami selects, no matter how much you want him. You need to pick a player who could actually be the Dolphins’ pick.
Here are my selections:
One Player I Want: Jabrill Peppers, S, Michigan
I have stated several times that Peppers is my random draft crush this year. He is a do everything type of player, which might actually hurt his draft stock some, but it is that versatility that makes me want Peppers. You need a safety? Peppers. You need a cornerback? Peppers. You need a linebacker? Peppers. You need a running back? Peppers. You need a kick or punt returner? Peppers. Basically, if you need something - whether due to injury or some other reason - Peppers is a player who you can throw in there, and he is somehow going to get the job done.
Jacks-of-all-trades typically do not explode on the NFL scene in their rookie years, and sometimes not at all. That does not change the fact that I would love to see the Dolphins add Peppers. To be fair, I had a chance to grab Peppers in the SB Nation NFL bloggers mock draft, and I passed on him in favor of Haason Reddick. At the end of the day, I chose what I see as an immediate fit into the Dolphins defense over a player that I think will turn into an exceptional one, once he finds a positional home. If Miami were to pick Peppers, I would love the selection - but if they pass, I think that would make sense as well.
One Player I Do Not Want: David Njoku, TE, Miami
This is nothing against Njoku, but rather because of the Dolphins’ situation at tight end. Julius Thomas should be the starter, with Anthony Fasano seeing plenty of playing time in two tight end sets. Njoku would bring an explosiveness to the position, one that Miami is hoping Thomas still has as he returns to an Adam Gase offense, but it is not a position of need for Miami. After using last year’s draft almost entirely on offense, this year’s focus has to be on defense, and Njoku would feel almost like a pick just to make a pick.
That said, I think Njoku is going to have a great NFL career, and I could regret not wanting him if he goes to an AFC playoff contender and has a role in keeping Miami from the postseason, but I would rather see Miami look elsewhere. If the Dolphins were to pick up a tight end later in the Draft, especially as this is seen as a deep tight end draft class, I could understand it as the team looks for a younger player to develop behind Thomas and Fasano. I just do not want to see them get that player on day one.
(And, after saying all that, I am fairly certain that, if the commissioner comes out and says the Dolphins have selected Njoku, I would be excited about the idea of his role in Gase’s offense....so not wanting him is subjective right now.)
Those are the players I want and do not want. What about your choices?