ESPN’s Mel Kiper, Jr. and Todd McShay are back with another three-round 2017 NFL Mock Draft, but rather than dueling with their picks like their last joint effort, this week, they are alternating picks. Kiper picked first in the mock, with McShay taking the even numbered picks. The two were not allowed to make trades, and there were no deals between the two that one would not select a player so the other could make the selection in what they felt would be a better system.
McShay’s selection for the Miami Dolphins with the 22nd overall pick was Forrest Lamp, the Western Kentucky guard. Lamp is a popular selection for the Dolphins, filling an obvious need on the offensive line, and giving Miami what should (finally) be a solidified pass- and run-blocking unit. McShay writes of the selection, “Lamp plays with great toughness and is a phenomenal athlete for his size.”
The Dolphins next select with the 54th pick, where McShay targets Colorado cornerback Chidobe Awuzie. The Dolphins have said this offseason that they are looking for cornerbacks, trying to add top talent and give themselves enough depth in case the injury issues of last year creep up again this year; Awuzie would give exactly that for Miami. McShay explains the pick, writing, “I love the way Awuzie plays. He plays with the physicality of a linebacker and would give Miami an instant upgrade at slot corner.”
Finally, Miami has the 97th pick in the Draft, the first compensatory selection awarded this year, which means Kiper makes the team’s third-round choice. After addressing needs on the offensive line and at cornerback, Kiper fills another need by grabbing LSU linebacker Kendell Beckwith. Adding Beckwith, who is an incredibly physical linebacker, who likely would be a middle linebacker in Miami, could give the team a great player for years to come. The issue is, he tore his ACL in November, so there is likely some rehab time still to come. Beckwith has said he believes he will be ready by July, and he is running full speed, though there is no word on if he has advanced to changing directions yet. He had been projected as a Day 3 selection because of the injury, so Miami adding him in the third round is a little earlier than anticipated. Kiper writes of the pick, “Beckwith, a three-year-starter for the Tigers, is coming off an ACL injury, or else he might be higher. This is a good value pick.”
The Kiper-McShay alternating picks mock draft filled three needs for the Dolphins, albeit in a different order than most people expect them to be filled. What do you think of a Lamp-Awuzie-Beckwith first three rounds for Miami?