Round 1 – 8th pick: Ryan Tannehill, QB Texas A&M

Round 1 – 8th pick: Ryan Tannehill, QB Texas A&M

Height: 6’4  Weight: 221 lbs

Captain Hope

– Elite physical attributes

– Great arm strength and athletic ability

– Physically tough and intensely competitive.

– Highly focused and determined.

– Lacking experience

– Needs time to develop

As Tony Sparano’s Dolphins career will forever be linked to lack of development shown by Chad Henne, so Coach Philbin is now inextricably linked to Ryan Tannehill. If he realises his potential then Miami has at last found it’s franchise quarterback, a pro-bowler with the competitiveness, intelligence and physical attributes to be a top 10 QB. The jury will remain out on Tannehill until he transitions into starting as QB and with Matt Moore and Dave Garrard on board, there is no need to rush the young man out of Texas.

I admire Jeff Ireland’s refusal (throughout the draft) to get caught up in the hype or panic of possibly not getting Tannehill and trading up with the Vikings or Rams. This left the Dolphins in a strong position to go get impact players once they had selected RTT.

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Round 2 – 42nd pick: Jonathan Martin, OT Stanford

Round 2 – 42nd pick: Jonathan Martin, OT Stanford

Height: 6’5  Weight: 312 lbs

Jonathan Martin

– Good footwork and balance

– Great reach and arm length

– Highly intelligent, used to a pro-style offense

– Needs to really work on becoming stronger

– Can be exposed by elite speed and physicality

The Dolphins surrendered a sack every 10.5 dropbacks last season, the worst for any offensive line in the league. This pick could go one of two ways. Either Martin bulks up, gets a lot stronger to handle the physicality of an NFL pass rusher or he becomes meat and drink to the likes of Mario Williams. Cerebral and determined, I back him to ultimately be a success at right tackle, but maybe this year he will start out as left guard, with some protection and support from Long and Pouncey. This would allow Incognito to shift to the right side and get real nasty on the run.

Improving the offensive line was a priority this off season and in Long and Martin, Miami have potentially locked down the tackle spot for the next 5 years. Long, Incognito, Pouncey, Jerry/Murtha and Martin has a really solid sound to it.

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Round 3 – 72nd pick: Olivier Vernon, DE Miami

Round 3 – 72nd pick: Olivier Vernon, DE Miami

Height: 6’2 Weight: 261 lbs

Olivier Vernon

– Very strong and aggressive

– Explosive first step to rush the passer

– athletic, competitive and passionate

– still very raw, developing his instincts

– limited production in college

If this guy can focus and concentrate on developing his all round game, then he has the physical ability to be a beast at DE. His speed and strength mark him out as the ideal compliment to Cameron Wake lining up on the other side of the defensive line. If Vernon realises his considerable potential those two could be a dynamic and disruptive tandem in seasons to come.

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Round 3 – 78th pick: Michael Egnew, TE Missouri

Round 3 – 78th pick: Michael Egnew, TE Missouri

Height 6’5 Weight 252 lbs

Michael Egnew

– Good athlete, ability to work the seam and slot

– Superb hands, makes catches you wouldn’t expect

– Exceptional straight-line speed (4.54 at the combine).

– Good competitiveness, work ethic and durability

– Next to no ability to block

– Lacks strength to compete for the football

Dynamic player with lots of potential to be a bigger, stronger Dallas Clark type. He won’t block for you, but he will be a match up nightmare for defences. A great pair of hands and good speed, Egnew will become Tannehill’s safety blanket.

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Round 4 – 97th pick: Lamar Miller, RB Miami

Round 4 – 97th pick: Lamar Miller, RB Miami 

Height 5’11 Weight 212 lbs

Lamar Miller

– Physical hard nosed one cut runner

– A real home run threat, excellent speed and initial burst

– Question marks over whether he can remain healthy

–  Needs to improve his blocking

– Struggles to gain yards inside

A great value pick from Jeff Ireland, trading up in the 4th to select the best player available, a player many had predicted would be drafted as high as the first round. This pick enables the Dolphins to rotate Bush, Thomas and Miller keeping them fresh. Daniel Thomas showed flashes of potential to be a hard, bruising type of runner in his rookie year, but these were only flashes. The Miller pick sends Thomas the message that he needs to keep developing and add consistency to his considerable ability. The Dolphins now have great depth at running back, and the flexibility to line Reggie up out wide.

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Round 5 – 155th pick: Josh Kaddu, LB Oregon

Round 5 – 155th pick: Josh Kaddu, LB Oregon

Height 6’3 Weight 239 lbs

Josh Kaddu

– Athletic and aggressive pass rushing linebacker

– Great closing speed

– Good character

– Needs to work on his strength

– Needs to improve his ability to dissect passing plays

Another great character guy, needs to work on his upper body strength to really make an impact, but with time and development of his instincts he could challenge Koa Misi for a starting spot. His good speed should mean he sees a lot of action on 3rd down passing plays covering the AFC East’s athletic tight ends Hernandez, Gronkowski and Keller.

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Round 6 – 183rd pick: B.J. Cunningham, WR Michigan State

Round 6 – 183rd pick: B.J. Cunningham, WR Michigan State

Height 6’1 Weight 211 lbs

BJ Cunningham

– Good route runner

– Good size and strength

– Makes catches in traffic and not afraid to play over the middle

– Very small hands.

– Not an explosive athlete.

– struggles to separate vs. man coverage.

Recently franchises have found a lot of value at wide out in the later rounds of the draft. Antonio Brown was taken in the 6th by the Steelers in 2010, Johnny Knox taken by the Bears in the 5th (2009) and Miles Austin (2006) and Victor Cruz (2010) weren’t even drafted. Hopefully Cunningham  turns out to be another diamond in the rough.

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