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Thursday, April 12, 2007

Dolphins need to address offense on draft day

My first year covering the Dolphins, which was 1990, Don Shula told me before the draft that the Dolphins had a star quarterback on the team but he needed to help Marino maintain that status by protecting him.

"Everyone knows we need offensive line help,'' Shula said then.

So Shula drafted two offensive linemen with his first two picks of that draft, started both of them every game in the preseason and both had fine runs with the Dolphins for years to come. The two guys were Richmond Webb and Keith Sims.

So what is the lesson?

Sometimes it pays to know where your team is weak and address, indeed, attack that problem. And that brings us to today's Dolphins.

I've been hearing some troubling whispers where the Dolphins have defensive standouts like DT Amobi Okoye, S LaRon Landry, DT Alan Branch, and CB Leon Hall in their sights as possible first round picks. All of those guys may be available around the time the Dolphins are on the clock with the No. 9 overall pick.

To that I would say ARRRRRRRRRGGGGHHHH!

Has anyone seen the Dolphins play lately? They do not score enough points to win. It's been like that for about half-a-dozen seasons, which through no coincidence, is about the time the Dolphins have been out of the playoffs.

So here's an idea: Pick to improve the offense.

Ted Ginn Jr. is probably a bit of a reach at No. 9 because the kid has health questions troubling him this offseason. But the reason he has those issues is because he's been slow to recover from a foot sprain he suffered after he was mobbed by teammates when he returned a kick 93 yards for a TD against Florida in the national title game.

He's a reach at No. 9 as a pure receiver but Ginn also returns kicks which add to his value -- think Devin Hester of the Bears. And when was the last time the Dolphins had a return man that scared anyone?

There's also Penn State LT Levi Brown out there as a possibility. After all the Dolphins don't have a starting LT today so why not fill that significant need with a significant investment of a first-round pick. Personally, I'm tired of Miami filling in the most important positions (QB, LT, CB, DT) with other teams' castoffs.

So that would be a good fit if Miami has a conviction about Brown. And there's always Brady Quinn should he begin to drop on draft day. The Dolphins LOVE Quinn, but I have said and will repeat he will not be available when Miami picks at No. 9.

But suppose he's there at No. 5 or 6? Maybe the Dolphins can move up ahead of Minnesota and score a coup. But that is a stretch as I don't see Cleveland being stupid enough to let Quinn go.

By the way, if the Dolphins do not land Quinn in the first round, I'm told they will likely have Michigan State QB Drew Stanton on their radar in the second round.

That's a good thing because the guy plays on offense.

30 Comments:

Blogger jedco-online said...

No doubt we need to buck up the offense. I think that's what Cam is here for. Randy Mueller probably knows we need offensive players too.

I gotta say Armando, I agree with just about everything you wrote. Our grasp of the obvious is absolutely ordinary!

12:22 PM  
Anonymous patrick said...

Armando, absolutely a must on the O-line. I guess my only question would be is Brown worthy the 9th pick? A lot of teams have money under the cap this year which could lead to an unusual amount of trading. More than we have seen in recent years.

With that in mind, we may be able to trade down just a few picks maybe get a 3rd rounder and still get brown.

The QB situation may not work out in our favor this year relative to the 1st round (Sabanism). Just think if this was last year Matt Lineart would have fallen our lap. I've read some reports of Trent Edwards moving up quickly in the draft. He could be the dark horse if Cameron and Mueller liked him enough after working him out at Stanford.

What about giving up number 9 for a late 1st rounder, a 2nd and a 3rd then drafting Edwards and a slew of O-linemen. We need an influx of talent across the board on offense. We can only get that by stock piling draft picks and then making the right choices.

I'm looking forward to the draft this year I think it's going to be interesting.

1:20 PM  
Anonymous John Michaels said...

Right on, Armando! The last thing this team needs is ANOTHER defensive tackle. I mean, no offense to a talent like Okoye, but we've got four young guns behind Keith Traylor. I would like too see what Fred Evans, Manny Wright, Rodrique Wright, and Kevin Vickerson all have to offer. Adding another, would just create an unecessary logjam at the position.

OT Levi Brown would make sense at the nine spot. However, a lot of reports have said that he's prone to a lot of false start penalties, and he gets lazy in pass protection. That's two things we don't need from an offensive lineman. Is there a chance he could fix that, and be a dominant lineman for the next 10 to 12 years? Of course there is, but I'm just not sold on Levi Brown, though.

If we can't have Brady Quinn at number nine or via a sensible trade up, I'd take WR Ted Ginn Jr. out of Ohio State. All the reports out of Columbus was it was raining and the conditions were just overall crappy. That being said, Teddy Ginn ran his 40s in 4.38, 4.44 and 4.45 seconds. That was with a sore foot too. Can you imagine, what this guy could run on a clear day and a healthy foot? I mean, I would be lying if I didn't say that his recovery from the foot sprain is cause for questions. However, the fact that this injury was the first big injury he's had in his entire football career answers a lot of questions about his toughness and durability. If we stay at number nine, I'd like to see us draft Ted Ginn.

Please, please, please, I do not want too see a Defensive Tackle taken with our first pick!!!!!!!!!!

1:41 PM  
Anonymous finndolphan said...

yes mando it's obvious the offence needs help,we all agree on that!however ginn jr. is a big-time reach there at no.9!he will likely drop much further than that to 15-20 range,i think robert meachem is probably a better prospect as he is much bigger and almost as fast.let's trade down to 12-16 range,get another first day pick and then draft levi brown,ginn jr. or meachem.let's not think we can ignore the defense on day one either!corner is an obvious need,none of the young tackles is really a nose-tackle prospect,an linebacker and rush end are also priorities due to age at those positions!

1:58 PM  
Anonymous ukdolfan said...

I totally agree Armando,
all these mock drafts with Okoye or branch's name next to our #9 make me sick, surely it has to be offense and i've always thought the dolphins, via Washington #6, would trade up for Quinn if Cleveland don't or end up with Russell with the raiders taking Johnson #1. If we don't get Quinn which would be a huge loss then it has to be Levi Brown OT, this guy may be a reach at #9 but he won't be there later on, Houston has him on their radar at #10.

2:53 PM  
Anonymous y-not said...

If Okoye is available and quinn and jamarcus are not I bet $50 they take Okoye!

3:19 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The "lessen" is that lesson is spelled thusly.

5:04 PM  
Anonymous Randy said...

Armando,
OL OL OL OL. i've been saying that for 6 months but still blogs are full of names like ginn, quinn and landry. This is a decent draft for linemen...and the dolphins need at least 2 and possibly as many as 4. i understand the desire to pick a guy who runs faster than a cheetah or jumps higher than a gazelle. i want a couple more guys who will slap somebody in the mouth like a gorilla, so i can watch as Ronnie or Ricky glides past them to gain 5 yards a pop. is that asking too much????

8:51 PM  
Blogger Armando Salguero said...

Actually, the lesson is that I can edit.

9:43 PM  
Anonymous Brian said...

I definitely think Ginn is a reach at 9. If we stay at 9 I think we have to go Levi Brown. We have to get a LT on the first day this year. With Houck coaching I think we have an advantage even if the pick isn't value.

The problem with trading down is that we don't exactly have a coveted draft spot. I'd like to see us trade up if Joe Thomas starts to fall. This guy could be a pro bowl anchor on the line for the next 10 years. I'd gladly give up our first and a second for him.

If we could find someone and trade down I'd like to see us pick up Joe Staley. Then pick between Edwards and Stanton in the second and maybe get a receiver like Steve Smith.

10:05 PM  
Anonymous JacobFinsFan said...

Well I definetley agree you got to go OL and WR. I believe we got 2 picks in the second #40 and #60, the 2 picks in the 3rd #71 and #72. If thats correct those are great picks to have and should not be traded for any reason! With those picks alone we can add a young QB, a fast WR, 2 OL players and a DB or I really wouldnt mind seeing a big tight end or another RB like Lorenzo Booker or if he's there in the 6th round Dwayne Wright out of Fresno State. He's a bruising RB with speed on the field. He'd be an excellent 3rd back on the depth chart!

10:20 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Armando, just a point of fact, in this defense, CB is the least important position on the field. All Miami needs are guys who can run with the receivers. The playmakers in the secondary are the safeties.

As for Ginn, I wouldn't touch him with a 20-foot pole. I don't think that you ever take a WR in the first round -- it's an absolute waste of a pick since the position is so dependent on other positions.

The guy I really want to see Miami take is Ryan Kalil from USC. He'll fill the huge void that this team has had at center since Tim Ruddy retired.

10:26 PM  
Anonymous Rob J IMAWriter said...

Armando...you are correct...as usual...as I see it,the problem with trading up (with Washington) is that if we don't get the guy(s) we want, we're stuck taking a guy at #6 who probably isn't worth it...thus we pay #6 money for a #9 guy (shades of Ronnie brown...good, but not #2 in the draft good)...and there won't be many, save maybe Detroit who might want to trade down, but that #2 pick would cost us our #9, plus probably 3 other picks this year...we can't afford to lose those picks...unless the brain-trust firmly feels that Quinn or JaMarcus is the answer...i don't believe Russell is...I love Johnson, but not enough to give up 3 extra picks...he can't throw it to himself...

11:49 PM  
Blogger L said...

Return man that scared people? Oh how fast you forget about Bernie Parmalee.

12:15 AM  
Anonymous bubba kartoffel said...

"I've been hearing some troubling whispers where the Dolphins have defensive standouts like DT Amobi Okoye, S LaRon Landry, DT Alan Branch, and CB Leon Hall in their sights as possible first round picks. " ~ Armando

I know you are aware that no teams with intelligent GMs and head coaches broadcast their draft choices. In fact, they cloud the situation with whispers like the ones you are hearing in hopes that other teams will be less interested in the players actually desired. This applies equally to obfuscation designed to facilitate trading up or down in the draft.

Now, if they really DO draft for the defensive side while ignoring obvious O needs, I'll be as disturbed as you are.

10:00 AM  
Anonymous patrick said...

I was surprised to read anon's opinion that we just need CBs who can run with receivers. Where did that come from? I would tend to believe as Shula once said, "you never have enough good CBs."

After QB I believe CB is the most difficult position on the field with LT following closely after. CBs can make or break a defense. A great cover corner is worth his weight in gold. Think of the schemes that can be run when a defense does not have to roll coverage to a number 1 receiver.

I would not pick Ginn with #9. WRs tend to bust in the 1st round though I believe Calvin Johnson is the best player in this draft. Ginn scares me because he's a bit of a small guy and I question his durability in the NFL.

Joe Thomas, Calvin Johnson and Brady Quinn are the only 3 players I would trade up to take. All 3 fill a need position and are the best in this class. If we must stay at 9 I think the pick would be Brown but I think we could trade down a couple spots and still get him. I agree with whoever mentioned that 9 is not really a great spot to trade down from unless there is a player someone covets and Okoye may be that guy. He's 19 years old, already graduated from College and is a stud in the making. I'm thinking the Dolphins are throwing a smoke screen out to see if a team will covet him enough to trade up for him.

11:19 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

WE MUST DRAFT O-LINE!
Due to lack of o-line in previous drafts, use all first day picks on o-line. Face it the offensive line has been bad for 5 years. Just get it over with now, make it easy on all of us. Bring in 4 good young lineman and the o-line will be great for years, then the rest of the offense can finally get better too! We could also in 2008 draft start drafting best player available, once we get our o-line set we can build the rest of team! Our o-line is so bad we don't have a choice at best player available strategy this year. It's all about the lineman, we have huge holes on the o-line!

4:01 PM  
Blogger fin1fan said...

Don't worry Armondo that doesn't "lessen" your "lesson"!!!!

10:57 AM  
Anonymous quinn sucks said...

quinn sucks

7:16 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Armando,

You need to print this out, get some tape, and stick it on Cam's door.

Like one of the last posters said...I'd trade down, pick up extra picks, grab a QB and a slew of OL guys. I'm sick to death of defense. We want points dammit!

8:04 PM  
Blogger GARRY said...

I AGREE WE SHOULDNT TAKE A DT WITH OUR FIRST PICK BUT SCHOOLS OUT ON LEVI BROWN I DO LIKE THE DE THIS YEAR LIKE GAINES ADAMS OR ADAM CARRICKER I DONT THINK WE CAN FORCE A PICK TO FIX A HOLE IF THE PLAYER IS NOT GOOD ENOUGH I ALSO THINK IT WILL TAKE MORE THAN ONE DRAFT TO FIX ALL OF OUR PROBLEMS I LIKE TRADING DOWN FOR MORE PICKS BUT IF NOT TAKE THE BEST PLAYER AVAILABLE

12:02 PM  
Blogger topeka said...

That reasoning makes sense if you look at it as a one-man draft. Everybody is so intensely focused on the 1st round leading-up to the draft that they forget that most 1st round picks are busts and that more starters come from the later rounds.

It's hard enough to find an impact player without handcuffing yourself to a need.

The Dolphins have 10 draft picks. So why not spend the 1st rounder on the player with the highest value?

If you did that EVERY year, you probably wouldn't have so many need to begin with :)

1:26 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Don Shula also said "Take the best player available" and thats exactly what the Dolphins should do no matter who that player is.

4:57 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Best Player available, that is what the Dolphins should be doing. We need help in a lot of places, even on defense where our stars are getting older.

We have 10 picks so it allows us to go best players available. OL help is available outside the 1st round as is WR and QB.

You skip over a talent like Okoye and Branch and we revert back to previous drafts where we continue to draft for need and not talent, i.e. just about every first round pick we have made the past decade.

If Quinn slides past Cleveland, which I think he will, then you flat out go and get him. Time to groom our own QB and stop picking up everyone elses rejects.

8:48 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Armando, you need to get your facts correct. Richmond Webb and Keith Sims were drafted in 1989.

9:44 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Personally, I'm tired of Miami filling in the most important positions (QB, LT, CB, DT) with other teams' castoffs" - Not entirely accurate Armando - Vernon Carey, 1st round pick in 05 on the OL, Jason Allen, CB, ist r pick last year. Travis Daniels, played CB as a rookie in 05, got him through the draft, as well as Y Bell who started at safety at the end of last year. Re DT, we got Fred Evans, Rodrigue Wright and Manny Wright - all good young talent at DL through the draft. They may turn out to be future starters but at very least contribute this year to the DL rotation. RE QB - you're right on that one.

11:36 AM  
Blogger Armando Salguero said...

Anonymous, seriously: Webb and Sims were drafted in 1990, not 1989 when Sammie Smith and Louis Oliver were the first round picks. But I appreciate the advice about accuracy.

12:17 PM  
Anonymous J.P. said...

Ya we need offense. I like Levi Brown and their probably gonna have tp decide between either him or Akoye, whose a 19 year old beast! The Phins' DT's are fossils compared to him. Okoye is still growing and i think its easier to get a solid OT in the second round then it is getting a DT. But then again will Trent Edwards or Drew Stanton be there by the time their 2nd pick in the second round comes along, it's gonna eba tough decision for Cam Cameron. personaly, ya i agree they need offense, but when they finaly do get it, their defense is gonan be too old to play. Coach C. inherited a team with holes at every position except RB.

2:12 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think that we should trade down to 19 or 20 in the first round, pick up a couple of more picks both for this year and next year (we might need them) and draft LT Joe Staley out of Central Michigan. The guy might be the third rated LT, but from what I read, he is a much better pass-blocker and can be tought by a guy like Hudson Houck to be more tough and become a run-blocker. You can find run-locking T's and G's in the later rounds. Pass-blockers are hard to find and we draft QB in the 2nd and WR in the 3rd. Save the defensive young projects for the late tounds, not the first.

8:22 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

TRADING DOWN IS NOT THE ANSWER!
Trades just aren't that easy to set up, getting equal value just doesn't happen. Everyone who's posted we should trade down, who we gonna trade with. Ya'll said to trade down well tell us how this trade is gonna work? DRAFT O-LINE, PLEASE, DRAFT O-LINE!

2:34 PM  

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