The Miami Dolphins will be looking to fill many roster holes with their selections in the 2023 NFL Draft. To hone in on specific players, teams use various tools to determine who fits specific criteria they might be valuing over others. One such tool is RAS — or Relative Athletic Score.
What is RAS?
RAS was developed by Kent Lee Platte and is a score that is given to prospects based on that player’s athletic testing results from the NFL Combine and/or that player’s pro day. The 10-point sliding scale factors in things such as height, weight, vertical jump, 40-yard dash time, bench press reps and more. Once a player’s overall score is determined, one can easily compare how athletic that player is to his peers or even past draft prospects.
With this exercise, I’m aiming to give our readers the top 10 RAS scores for positions of need for our Miami Dolphins, while also using Pro Football Focus’ Mock Draft simulator to predict where the Dolphins will need to pick certain highlighted players if they don’t want to be left out in the cold.
Please note that not all players qualify for a RAS score due to skipping particular drills.
Today’s position group is a fun one that Miami will surely be looking at in the upcoming draft — tight ends! Let’s dive in.
- Zack Kuntz — Old Dominion — RAS: 10.00
- Luke Musgrave — Oregon State — 9.95
- Darnell Washington — Georgia — 9.85
- Luke Schoonmaker — Michigan — 9.75
- Tucker Kraft — South Dakota State — 9.58
- Sam LaPorta — Iowa — 9.26
- Will Mallory — Miami — 9.19
- Brenton Strange — Penn State — 8.92
- Josh Whyle — Cincinnatti — 8.86
- Davis Allen — Clemson — 8.77
When a player scores a perfect ten in RAS, you better take a closer look at his tape. People much smarter than me have predicted Kuntz to be a sleeper in this year’s class, yet others still aren’t sure. His height immediately pops out at you, checking in at just over 6’7”. For as tall as he is, he is somewhat lanky, weighing only 255 lbs. However, he is an uber explosive athlete, posting elite scores in vertical and broad jumps, 40-yard dash time, three cone and shuttle drills. He also put up 23 bench press reps which was also an elite number.
For as athletic as Kuntz tested, his tape doesn’t show a dominant player, according to Lance Zierlein of NFL.com. “He plays more like a big receiver than a tight end. His hands are subpar and he’s not strong enough to outwork grabby coverage or win contested catches right now.” Based on his upside alone, Pro Football Focus rates him as a 4th or 5th round selection, which means Miami would have to acquire a pick in those rounds, grab him in the third round, or hope he slips to their 6th round slot.
This man is a beast — towering over his competition at over 6’6” tall and weighing in at 264 lbs. For as large as he is, he is still an explosive athlete, posting elite scores in every tested category except the vertical jump. What’s even more impressive is his blocking prowess, being called by some an offensive lineman at the tight end position. But don’t let that fool you, he can still reel in some highlight catches as he did when he went up and nabbed a one-hander during last weekend’s Combine.
The problem for Miami is that with Washington running such a good 40-yard dash time at his size (4.64), he may have tested himself out of the Dolphins’ range. He has steadily been climbing up draft boards as offensive coordinators are salivating over his combination of size, blocking skills, and blazing speed. If he does slip to pick #52, Miami better send the pick in quickly, as he certainly won’t last much longer than that.
Another NFL Draft, and another Iowa tight end who is generating plenty of buzz. My readers in South Florida may not want to admit it, but Iowa has become Tight End University as of late with the successes of former Hawkeye players at the position, George Kittle, Noah Fant and TJ Hockenson. LaPorta looks to add to that list, and if his RAS is any indication, he projects to do just that. A bit undersized at 6’3” and 245 lbs, LaPorta made up for his lack of size by posting elite numbers in every category including vertical jump, broad jump, 40-yard dash time (4.59), and the three cone and shuttle drills.
Initially projected as a late second or early third round selection by PFF, LaPorta is steadily climbing up draft boards thanks, in part, to his eye-popping numbers at the NFL Combine. The Dolphins, with visions of George Kittle dancing in their heads, will most likely only have one shot to get the former Hawkeye, and that is at pick #52.
The Dolphins have plenty of work to do between now and the 2023 NFL Draft, which means so do we. Keep an eye out for another edition of the RAS Roundup later next week as we check in on another position group the Dolphins could be targeting!