We don’t have to wait much longer until the 2012 NFL Draft kicks off next Thursday. (See link for schedule and times).
It is six days from today to be exact and we still have three teams in the TOP TEN to cover, which means I need my wpm at top speed heading down the homestretch.
Yesterday we took a look at the Jacksonville Jaguars, who hold the seventh pick in the draft.
Today we are going to delve into whom the Miami Dolphins may select with the eighth overall selection.
I’m aware that it’s Friday, so I’ll try to keep it brief and all I’ll ask in return is that you take two seconds to vote at the end of the page.
Miami Dolphins Overview and Draft Needs
The Miami Dolphins have needs at several different positions, so they need to figure out which position they want to fill with their marquee draft selection at #8.
Last season the Dolphins allowed 52 quarterback sacks. That number was good for a 30th overall ranking in the league. I say “good,” but it wasn’t. You get the point.
Nine of those sacks can be accredited to last year’s starting RT Marc Colombo, who also yielded 35 quarterback pressures.
Colombo won’t be back, though. He is retiring. In fact, he signed a ceremonial contract with the Dallas Cowboys today so he could retire a Cowboy.
The Dolphins will be needing to fill the void at RT and add depth to account for his loss.
In addition to losing Colombo, the Dolphins lost arguably their best offensive weapon in Brandon Marshall, who signed with the Chicago Bears.
Miami filled Marshall’s roster spot by bringing in former San Diego Charger Legedu Naanee (6-2, 220), but Naanee is hardly proven to be a #1 after only acquiring only 1,200 yards and 4 touchdowns in four seasons with the Chargers.
Miami should add more talent at the WR position via the draft next week, but they may opt not to do that at #8; and besides, who will be throwing them the ball?
Matt Moore was efficient last season, but he is certainly nothing to build a franchise around. He is expected to battle with David Garrard for the starting gig this season.
Garrard didn’t even play last season and is coming off of a shoulder surgery.
Peyton Manning and Tom Brady may be appealing options after missing full seasons, but Garrard?
I would have to think of him as a one year project, certainly not the future. The Dolphins will need to lock down their QB of the future very soon.
Lastly, Jason Taylor, perhaps one of the greatest Dolphins in recent memory, has decided to retire. The Dolphins pass rush was pretty good last season ranking 10th overall with 41 total sacks. Taylor accounted for 7 of those himself.
Miami needs a new pass rusher opposite Cameron Wake.
Possible Options for Dolphins at #8
Let’s take a look at some of the talent that may be on the board to fill each need area for Miami.
Riley Rieff, OL Iowa
Rieff would be a great addition to the roster at RT. As a matter of fact, many people think he would make a better RT than LT.
His reach is slightly shorter than what many scouts are looking for on the blind side, but he is widely considered the best tackle prospect in the draft after Matt Kalil.
This may be too high for Rieff, especially at RT.
He will come off the board sooner or later, though.
Michael Floyd, WR Notre Dame
I never know for sure what will happen in the draft, but I am mixed as to whether Floyd will be here or not.
It all depends on how many trades take place in the top 10, in addition to whom the Rams and Browns may select.
It is very possible Floyd could still be on board waiting to be named Brandon Marshall’s replacement.
For more on Floyd, please view our past entries in this series which can be found at the end of the page.
Ryan Tannehill, QB Texas A&M
The Dolphins haven’t had a franchise QB since Dan Marino.
Tannehill is considered the third best prospect in this year’s draft class of QB’s behind Andrew Luck and RGIII.
Miami may be willing to reach for a QB here despite many scouts considering Tannehill a late first round to second round prospect.
He only played one year of QB in college and may not be proven enough for a top ten selection, but with the need to have a future at the QB position Miami may be very tempted to grab him before someone else does.
Melvin Ingram, OLB/DE South Carolina
A versatile outside backer who recorded 10 sacks and 2 interceptions to go along with 3 td’s as a senior, Ingram is capable of playing defensive end and from a stand-up position. He is so versatile that he can even be moved to the tackle position on passing downs.
He could add value to any roster.
Quinton Coples, DE North Carolina
After losing Jason Taylor, Miami will be considering pass rushing prospects.
Quinton Coples can do just that. He is a 6-6, 281 lb defensive end who racked up an attention-grabbing 17.5 sacks the last two seasons at North Carolina.
The book on Coples is mixed, though.
Many think he is the next Julius Peppers while others see him as the next big bust.
I’m sure the Dolpins have reviewed the tape and have him under consideration.
The options are there, it’s all a matter of priority.
Miami Dolphins Draft Pick Prediction
My Pick: Ryan Tannehill
(Note: I reserve the right to change my selections when submitting my final mock draft next week)
To see the rest of the posts in this series check out:
- #3 Minnesota Vikings
- #4 Cleveland Browns
- #5 Tampa Bay Buccaneers
- #6 St. Louis Rams
- #7 Jacksonville Jaguars
For the Full NFL Draft Schedule and Coverage Times: NFL Draft Schedule