NFL Draft Talk Volume XVII
As the NFL draft draws closer and closer here are some questions that are circulating that pertain to prospects and their draft stock as well as their potential and projected impacts at the next level. Does the Tannehill trade mean that the Dolphins are going all in on a rookie quarterback? After failing to lure Teddy Bridgewater away from New Orleans as the fifth-year passer opted to resign with the Saints and watched Tyrod Taylor sign a two year deal with the Los Angeles Chargers to back up Phillip Rivers for the 2019 season and possibly be the bridge to their potential heir apparent the following year, many believed that the Miami would stick with their top 10 pick from the 2012 draft for at least one more season. After news broke today that the team is trading eighth-year pro and a sixth-round pick to the Tennessee Titans in exchange for a fourth-round pick in next year’s draft and a seventh rounder in this year’s upcoming draft, that notion was shot down. He will now be backing up Marcus Mariota in Nashville after having his contract revised to a one-year deal worth $7 million and could max out at $12 million if he meets certain incentives. The Dolphins currently hold the 13th overall pick in the first round of this year’s draft that will take place in the very same city that they just traded their former franchise quarterback to from April 25-27. The only quarterbacks remaining on their roster now are the second year pro Luke Falk and fourth year passer Jake Rudock, neither of which have appeared in a regular season game. Since they pick just outside of the top 10, barring any potential trade, that pretty much climates them for contention to land one of the top two quarterbacks in this year’s crop with Oklahoma’s Kyler Murray being projected to go with the top overall pick and Ohio State’s Dwayne Haskins is believed to go no later than sixth overall to the New York Giants. The second tier of quarterback prospects includes Missouri’s Drew Lock, Duke’s Daniel Jones and NC State’s Ryan Finely. Jones began the pre-draft process with a lot of buzz and was garnering the most attention of the trio after being named MVP at the Reese’s Senior Bowl back in January. However, Lock, who also had a nice showing at the college senior all-star game, has been gaining a lot of traction and media attention as of late and his draft stock has been on a steady rise since he lit it up and impressed many scouts at the NFL Scouting Combine in Indianapolis a few weeks ago. There are even some mock drafts that project Miami selecting Lock with their first-round pick if they do intend to stand pat at 13th overall. Whether they decide to take Lock, Jones or trade up in an attempt to snag one of the top two prospects at the quarterback position, that rookie will be tasked with the daunting task of trying to win games with a depleted Dolphins roster. Another theory that no front office executive of the franchise would acknowledge or own up to is the that the team is committed to tanking during the 2019 season so that they will have a good chance of being able to take Alabama’s star quarterback Tua Tagovailoa. Outside of trying to bring in Taylor and Bridgewater, the team has let key members of their team walk in free agency or try to trade them, cut others and have made no significant signings to improve their team. No team in the NFL is going to admit that they are going to tank for a whole season but actions speak louder than words and they have made much more subtraction than additions. The team could also just be preparing to go all in on what looks to be a lengthy rebuild with whichever rookie quarterback that they might decide to select come April.