Thursday, April 11, 2013

I'm calling BS

We hear that the Dolphins did "open their books" to the county, with the county hiring two "outside auditors" who we hear the Dolphins steered them to...

The one-page summary they provided shows the Dolphins made $25 million last season, but stand to loose $14 million this season due to their spending on free agents.  That's in ""operating profits" with no explanation.  I am calling complete and total BS on these figures.  I have no idea what their measurement was, what figures were in- or ex- cluded, or whether this is based on any fact.

But how convenient that when they are asking for a handout, they spend on free agents and that it would appear they'll be losing money - so no way could they afford to do this themselves.  This is a load of it, and the county commissioners shouldn't have bought it, and neither should you.

This rushed timeline only serves their interests. The carrot of the superbowl being voted on is the perfect way for them to cram it down everyone's throats.  But, as I've said before, that's complete BS, too.

Now as for the financing, here's the general plan in my words, not spun by a rep hired by the team:
  • The renovations will now  cost $350 million (down from the $400 they proposed, but still up from the estimated of about $150 million they proposed 18 months before this one for the same things!)
  • The county will "loan" them about $170 million
  • They will also borrow somewhere around $150 million from NFL
  • That means...the Fins really only have to come up with about $30 million up front (and if the construction costs them less, then the fins pay less)
And here's where the county end comes into play:
  • To get the $170 million, the county will take out a loan. Lets do a little math here.  We'll use simple interest to make the calculation easier - and to be honest I'm not sure if its compounded or not - if it is its waaaaay more than this:
    • At 4%, the interest payments over the course of 26 years amount to $182,000,000 (yes, the interest is more than they borrow)
    • Or essentially that means that they have to pay back $357 million!
    • The country proposes to pay back the amount over 26 years using $7.5 million in the bed tax dollars every year (with a little wiggle room to use more at a future date - we'll leave that out for now).  The math here means that they will have paid back about $195 million - leaving $162 million to be paid back.
  • The Dolphins will pay back $112 million at the end of 30 years.  With no interest. (and they get to keep the $58 million difference, isn't that nice?!)
  • In a way that means that the county can cover $112 million of the $162 million it would likely still owe - after a 4 year gap - basically meaning they lose about $50 million on the money, assuming they have to pay the rest back themselves and there's an interest cost to this.
The county loan, then, is interest-free, to the fins.  That's ANOTHER interest-free loan they'll be holding onto.  As I've noted before Joe Robbie got the original money interest-free.  And Wayne got either an interest-free or low-interest loan to renovate for the Marlins.

No one knows how the NFL fund works, but it is generally assumed to be an interest-free loan that is paid back at a very slow rate from revenue the NFL would typically divvy up to the team. 

The state also may agree to give the Dolphins $3 million a year in "tax rebates" for 30 years which amounts to $90 million in money that impacts their bottom line.

At the end of 30 years, then, the Dolphins will have had $410 million in direct benefit to them - and they get any additional revenue associated with stadium improvements (if there's a cover, and seats closer to the field, that may mean they sell more tickets, or get an indirect benefit from the large events - who knows how much that would be over 30 years, but its probably billions).  And there's a likelihood that some of that $410 million could be managed in a way that nets it a modest amount of interest.  So at the end, the Dolphins come out at least hundreds of millions ahead in the game.

The county comes out behind (by at least $50 million, but there could be other factors that weigh into it). And Dade county tax payers get to cover that.

The NFL comes out whole.

And it gets paid for by "bed-tax dollars" which sounds nice, but is still a tax (even if its paid by "tourists"), and is covered by the general fund if it ever falls short.

The Dolphins are agreeing to pay penalties if they don't get some big events, or if the team is sold in the next 5 years.  And they have to stay in Miami for the next 30...

Plus Dade county is promised all the benefit from the big events, with Broward nixed - though I honestly can't see how that would be enforced since the Dolphins don't own the big events.

Does this sound like a good deal to you?

Yeah, shade sounds good - but its easy to see how many more "premium" seats there would be and how the cost of tickets would go up as a result.  We, as fans, stand to lose on that end...

The referendum date is set for May 14th.  If you live in Miami-Dade county, plan to get out and vote.  If you know someone that lives there, urge them to get out and vote.

Look at the numbers.  Huge benefit to the Dolphins.  Loss to the county.  No tangible benefit to the fans.

Vote NO!

[editor's note: this item was written by Bitchin' Dave and does not, necessarily, represent the views of anyone else associated with this site]

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Potential Draft Day Trade Partners for Miami Dolphins

With the NFL Draft coming ever closer to eager fans across the nation, many know that Draft Day trades are inevitable! In 2012, there were 29 Draft Day trades or in days leading up to the Draft (most notably the Rams and Redskins trade that landed the Redskins RGIII). Of those 29 trades, the Miami Dolphins were involved in three, two of which were the Dolphins trading down and the other the Dolphins traded up. They traded down in the 3rd round with the Chargers and selected TE Michael Egnew and gained a 6th round pick, which ended up being WR BJ Cunningham, who is currently on the Eagles. Next they traded up in the 4th round with the 49ers to select RB Lamar Miller. The Dolphins gave a 6th rounder and another 6th in the 2013 draft. Finally, they traded down in the 5th round with the Titans to select LB Josh Kaddu and picked up another 7th rounder that ended up being WR Rishard Matthews. Now with all of that being said, Jeff Ireland definitely has a history of trading up and down in the draft, most notably in 2010 when he traded down from 12 to 28 selected DE/DT Jared Odrick and picked up another 2nd rounder and LB Tim Dobbins. Here are a few trade possibilities in the 2013 Draft that could happen and who the Dolphins might pick with at the spot:

The first possibility is to trade up with the Bills at #8. Reports coming out of the Miami Dolphins camp is they like Lane Johnson. The problem is, so do the Titans and Chargers! To get from pick #12 to pick #8, the Dolphins would have to trade one of their 2nd round Draft picks and probably either another 3rd or 4th depending on who the Bills think they could get at #12. With the drafting of Lane Johnson, this would solidify the Tackle position for the Dolphins, keeping Ryan Tannehill clean in the pocket, and allowing him to throw to his newly acquired weapons (Mike Wallace, Dustin Keller, and Brandon Gibson). What the Bills do with this pick is very precarious, because they could go in a lot of different directions. With all their needs on the team right now, almost anyone they go with here will more than likely be a starter for them.

The second possibility is to trade up with Titans to #10. Reports around the league are that the Chargers like Lane Johnson and might use it on the Tackle out of Oklahoma. At this point in the draft, it is probably likely that either Chance Warmack or Jonathan Cooper is still available. With the Titans Steve Hutchinson due to retirement, they could draft either one of these guards at #12, leaving the Dolphins to pick Lane Johnson at #10. This is all assuming the Bills do not pick him at #8. Again, the drafting of Lane Johnson, would solidify the Tackle position for the Dolphins, keeping Ryan Tannehill clean in the pocket, and allowing him to throw to his newly acquired weapons (Mike Wallace, Dustin Keller, and Brandon Gibson). The Titans at #12 would likely go after a Defensive player that they like. Maybe a guys like Ziggy Ansah if he fell to them.


The third possibility is trading down to #15 with the Saints. This is a move that would add either another 2nd or 3rd to the Dolphins draft, but in this case more likely a 3rd. At #15 the Dolphins would likely choose Tyler Eifert, who is easily the top rated TE in this year's Draft (http://touch.sun-sentinel.com/#section/-1/article/p2p-75298607/ - Via @OmarKelly). This pick would add another offensive weapon for Ryan Tannehill to work with, making the offense even more explosive. The Saints, in this possible scenario, would be trading up to pick a Defensive player that has fell during the course of the Draft. With the NFL Draft always being so unpredictable, this could be a likely situation that comes to fruition.

With the NFL Draft always being so unpredictable, these three possibilities could come to pass, or they could fall through. The thing to keep in mind is, 1) the Draft is always changing, 2) the Dolphins have the ammunition to trade up, 3) Jeff Ireland has a history of trading down to acquire more picks, and 4) the Dolphins are probably narrowing down who they would like with their first pick as we speak, so all this speculation could all mean nothing. It all depends on what the Dolphins want to do on Draft day, and what happens with the teams around them.

Be looking for my next article about the Dolphins possible  options at pick #12!

Have questions or suggestions? Email me at sethAfisher07@gmail.com or tweet at me @PhinsBlogger13

If I were Jeff Ireland with the 12th Pick...by Carl Leone

Granted, I am not.

However, if I were, this is what I would do with our 12th pick:

Trade down to 15 with the Saints who may be willing to do this because they need defensive help as do the Bucs at 13 and the Panthers at 14.  If the Saints' man is still standing at 12, they may not want to risk losing him to the Bucs or Panthers and would be willing to give us their 3rd round pick in exchange for the 1st round switch.  Then after the Saints, Bucs and Panthers grab their defensive players we can set up Tannehill with another weapon, i.e. Tavon Austin.

Why Austin? Because of the sheer pressure that we would put on any defense in the league and more importantly, the NFL League Office demands it.
That's right, the LEAGUE itself demands it!

Never before have the rules tilted the playing field so far in favor of the Offense as it does today. Breathe on a wide out...5 yards! Look nasty in their direction...5 more!

The governing body wants scoring, wants action, wants fans spending gajillions on T-shirts and Jerseys and Hats and Sweatshirts and Tickets and DIRECTV! They want ratings and our complete obsession with everything NFL.

How best do they achieve this? Well since you asked, with scoring and tons of it. I am talking Dump Truck loads heading down the Florida Turnpike, right past the landfill and straight into the Sun Life Stadium parking lot. 

Beep. Beep. Beep..."Come on back. That's good right there. Ok, dump it in the end zone!!"

That's exactly what would happen with Wallace, Hartline, Keller and Austin lined up outside of Tannehill. It would be too much speed to contend with and too bad for those trying to contend with it. Scoring, scoring and more scoring. You would think Wilt Chamberlain was out on a date.

The league would give us every game at home and at 1 PM.  Yes they would. Yaha. The ratings would dictate it! We would have our own Channel similiar to the YES Network or the NFL Network. DolphsTV on channels 2, 3, 4, 7-29, 32-99 and All HD channels. HBO would go off the air. They couldn't get a channel in any cable lineups!

You say pick a lineman.  I say Blocking Schmocking.  Just get in their way for 1.5 seconds.  Put a helmet on the water boy..."Now listen kid, just fall on the ground right in front of them. They will have to jump over you! Trust me kid. Besides we got plenty of helmets and plenty of water boys."

We could cut the punter. As a matter of fact get rid of the place kicker too. Too much money for kicking extra points. Hmmm...long snapper back your bags. We're going for two each and every possession!

Each year we would invite the President to our house. Why travel all the way up to Washington? After all we would have a much higher Approval Rating anyway.

It just snow balls from there. Utterly amazing isn't it. How just one little phone conversation between Jeff Ireland and the Saints changes the whole dynamic of the entire league, cable TV as we know it and, of course, wardrobes across America.

Hmmm. Will anyone else be wearing their Miami Dolphins Pinstripe Suit at work today? Who cares, its my favorite and I am wearing it again!!! 

Carl Leone
Dolfan since 12/25/1971
carldleone@aol.com

Monday, April 08, 2013

Misdirection is the Key in completeing the Draft Plan (Repost)

First:  Dave, thanks for this privilege to write for (and with) you.  I hope you enjoy my take!

So, its early April.  Its time for Jeff Ireland (Miami's GM) to bob-and-weave.  He doesn't want to show the other 31 GMs what he has planned.  Make no mistake: Ireland has a very clear plan.  And, he is not showing his hand!

Question:  Why is Jeff bringing in players to interview that will, by all accounts, be long-gone by the twelfth pick of the draft?

Answer:    He is making some of these GMs think he has plans to move up and take a highly touted DB, Milliner and Vaccaro.

Personally, I think he is planning to trade up and get one of the 3 stud Offensive Tackles, because the drop-off  in talent from the top 3 to the 4th (Fluker) on the list is as wide as the Grand Canyon.

Luke Joeckel*, OT, Texas A&M 
Eric Fisher, OT, Central Michigan  
Lane Johnson, OT, Oklahoma 


DJ Fluker, OT/G, from Alabama is a Guard really, and probably is a second round talent.    He looked good because of all of that other talent amassed by Nick Saban (I still hate you :-) at Bama.

If Miami wants a starter out of the draft at OT, Jeff Ireland must trade up and take one of those top three guys.

What do you think?

BobbyC
Robert F. Camacho, CPA

Commentary: Offense or Defense for Draft? You Decide...


From April 25-27, 2013, the Miami Dolphins have some tough choices to make. They currently have the 12, 42, 54, 77, 82, 111, 146, 166, 217, 224, and 250 overall picks (11 overall for right now). The most important picks being 12 (first round), 42 and 54 (second round). Now the question is, what direction should the Miami Dolphins go? Should they go defensively, considering that they went heavy on the offensive side of the ball (Mike Wallace, Dustin Keller, Brandon Gibson, and Lance Louis) during Free Agency this year, or do they go offensively continuing that trend of this 2013 off-season? Well obviously these decisions are up to Jeff Ireland, Joe Philbin, and Company, but here are a couple directions they could possibly go in the first two rounds:

Offensively (mainly):

Pick #12: TE Tyler Eifert, Notre Dame, 6'6" 251lbs

Tyler Eifert would be a definite upgrade in TE from previous years. His catching radius is fantastic(33 1/8 in arms and 9 1/8 in hands), athletic enough to jump over CB's and S (35.5 in vertical) powerful enough to run would-be tacklers over (22 reps in bench press), and fast enough to run by LB's (4.68 40 yd dash)! He has great hands and can make the difficult catch in traffic (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mqJRd3mN01w). He is also a good route runner who can get open against one-on-one man coverage. Now it has been said that is not the best blocker, but Eifert is capable of learning and getting better at it. TE's coming into the NFL usually have a transition in learning blocking, and Eifert has all the physical tools to do it- he just needs good coaching (which Dan Campbell can give him, considering he was a great blocking TE during his NFL days). Overall, Tyler Eifert would be a good, explosive option here at #12 and would immediately give Ryan Tannehill another viable option in the already improved pass game!

Pick #32 (trade pick #77 and #146): S John Cyprien, Florida International, 6'0" 217lbs

Now you may be asking yourself, "Why would the Dolphins draft a safety after signing Chris Clemons and already having a (some what) proven Reshad Jones?" Easy, the more playmakers on defense, the better! In today's NFL, you need playmakers on both sides of the ball. Now that the Dolphins have Offensive playmakers (Mike Wallace, Dustin Keller, Lamar Miller, Brian Hartline) it is time for the defense to catch up. Last year, the only real defensive playmakers the Dolphins had to work with was Cameron Wake and Reshad Jones. With Cyprien being a local kid, the Dolphins have the most inside information about him, and with him being a playmaker in college, he is a very good fit in a Kevin Coyle defense. NFL.com puts it best when they said, "Cyprien offers enough range to be reliable in box coverage while displaying an aggressive mentality against ball carriers and receivers. He plays smart, and that might be the most important trait when looking at safeties." Here is a video of him at the Senior Bowl (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MEHgE1tg8RU)


Pick #54: OT Terron Armstead, Arkansas-Pine Bluff, 6'5" 306lb

Terron Armstead is a super athletic OT from Arkansas-Pine Bluff, and from everything that is coming out of the Dolphins camp, they really like him. He really impressed at the NFL Combine running a 4.71 40 yd dash, jumping 34.5 in in the vertical, and getting 112 in in the broad jump. He is very light on his feet in pass protection and very agile and moves well in space. His weaknesses would be that he is not as strong as he needs to be to be a starting LT in the NFL, and also, even though he gets to the second level, he struggles to locate his next block. Both of these issues can definitely be worked on with good coaching, Tim Turner being a good OL coach, and NFL strength and conditioning program. Armstead is being compared to Duane Brown from the Houston Texans, and if he can play up to that level, the Dolphins will be set at both Tackle positions for years to come! Here is a video of him at the senior bowl (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OLLyEPh8Gv0)

Suggestions for Rounds 3-7: OG, CB, DE, and RB?

Defensively:

Pick #12: CB Xavier Rhodes, Florida State, 6'1" 210lbs

Xavier Rhodes is a great blend of size,speed (4.43 40 yd dash), and explosiveness (40.5 in vertical and 132 in Broad Jump). He is the prototypical Jeff Ireland CB and would fit in great with Kevin Coyle's defense. He is fast and big enough to play man to man coverage against the big WR's in the NFL and he is explosive enough to drive on balls in zone coverage. Many say he is a strict man-to-man corner, but he has more than enough athletic ability and would have the perfect defensive coordinator to teach him how to be a great zone corner. Overall, this upgrades the secondary and gives the Dolphins a possible future stud in the secondary to go along with Reshad Jones.

Pick #32 (trade pick #77 and #146): S John Cyprien, Florida International, 6'0" 217lbs

See Above

Pick #54: DE Damontre Moore, Texas A&M, 6'4" 250lbs

Damontre Moore would be a great pairing with Cameron Wake. With Moore and Wake (both similar size), opposite of each other, along with the already developing Olivier Vernon, the Dolphins could have a lethal pass rush in the coming years. Moore is an explosive and versatile pass rusher with room to add even more muscle to his frame. He anticipates the snap very well getting a good jump on Tackles, and then slants inside get to the QB. His weaknesses are that he is still not as strong as he could be, he is not very good at holding the POA (point of attack) on runs to his side, and is very inconsistent getting to the QB off the edge (rather than slanting inside). With the kind of athlete Moore is, and with one of the best DL coaches, Kacy Rodgers, in the NFL, it should be no problem being able to develop him and Vernon into two pass rushing studs! 

Suggestions for Rounds 3-7: OG, CB, DE, and RB?

So with both possibilities laid out, which one would you choose? Either way would improve the team, making it move explosive on the offensive side of the ball or defensive side. Which ever you prefer, these two sides add playmakers to the team, and that should be the key in this 2013 NFL Draft for Jeff Ireland, Joe Philbin. and the Miami Dolphins!

Be looking for my next article where I discuss possible trade partners for the Dolphins draft... See you NEXT time guys!

Free Agency Part 1: Why Some Players Will Not be Missed.

With Free Agency all but wrapped up I thought it would be good to do a two part series on which I will take a look at the moves Jeff Ireland and the Dolphins made during this very busy Free Agency season.  Part 1 will focus on the players the team decided to not resign.

Loses the Dolphins will not miss

The Dolphins lost some very good players in Free Agency and on the surface it seems like they lost as much as the gained, but in reality these players were not a fit and allowed to leave by design.

Jake Long – Former number one pick and all-pro left tackle.  The type of player the Dolphins are currently looking for, the kind of player you could trust to protect your most valuable asset, but Jake Long is not an all-pro Left Tackle in the Zone Blocking Scheme.  Jake thrived under Sparano’s Man Blocking Scheme and became one of the premier lineman in the NFL, but when Philbin took over he brought with him a new blocking scheme that emphasized players moving laterally and blocking an area rather than a specific player.  Jake Long struggled all season in this scheme and was rated as the 47th tackle by PFF.  On top of his dropping performance Long has finished the last two seasons on injured reserve and while I would prefer not to use the term injury prone, it is a trending topic in his world.  In the end, moving on from a player that is in the bottom half of NFL tackles and who has finished the last two seasons on IR is a very good move.

Reggie Bush – A former number two pick and human highlight reel.  The type of guy who could turn a broken play into a 60 yard touchdown, a player most team would game plan for, an excellent leader and one of the harder working players in the NFL, but while he made highlight type runs, he also was caught in the back field far too often and like Long is a casualty of scheme (there is a trend with these).  The ZBS requires a running back to make one cut, get upfield and pick up as many yards as they can.  It does not favor an indecisive back who dances in the backfield hoping to take it the distance.  Philbin wants a running back that can quickly read the line, make one cut to the hole and burst through to pick up positive yards.  Reggie was also going to command 4 million a year, far too much for a RB especially when we see countless rookies and journey men who can put up a grand in the right system.  Miami’s new offense was not the right system….for him.

Sean Smith – the 6’3” 215 pound corner back looks the part and at time plays the part of a very good NFL corner, but he was inconsistent, is more of a press corner and seems to struggle in the Zone that Coyle employs.  The biggest knock on Smith (regardless of scheme) was his ball skills, or lack thereof.  Smith didn’t put any fear into opposing QB’s as he was the most targeted corner in the NFL last season and responded poorly.  He was 31st in completion percentage, 37th in yards per completion and was rated as the 79th best corner on PFF.  This was a guy who wants number one CB money, but never performed to that level.  He never made “the big play” his coverage was average at best and he just gave up too many TD’s.

Karlos Dansby – I can’t say too much bad about Dansby.  He held the middle, showed up for every game and was one of the leaders of the defense, but he was never a game changer; he failed to force fumbles, pick-off passes or create any type of change of momentum.   Was a steady contributor, but wasn’t a playmaker.  Another issue I had with Dansby was while he was a very good leader he liked to take his gripes to the media.  I have no problem with a player addressing problems with the coach and other players, but you need to keep that in house. 

Loses the Dolphins will miss

Kevin Burnett – He is an excellent outside linebacker and one of the better cover linebackers and in a division that features a player like Gronk he will be sorely missed.  He was the 4th rated linebacker by PFF and was very strong against the run.  I understand the desire to get younger and more aggressive, but it is hard to find guys as consistent in both the run and pass coverage.

Anthony Fasano – There is absolutely nothing spectacular about Fasano, but the guy had a nice report with Tannehill, is an excellent blocker, and an above average pass catcher.  Keller is clearly an upgrade and will provide Tannehill a legitimate seam threat, but I like what Fasano provided and thought the two could have worked well together.  I don’t have a lot of faith in Clay as he shown that he isn’t a TE (more of a FB) and Egnew is still a ways off before he finds his way in the NFL.  Fasano is a very dependable player and always provided that outlet the QB needed.

In the end it is new coach and a new way of doing business, as a result some player who were counted on to lead this team are going to need to move on to greener pastures so the Coach and Front Office can find the guys that fit what the coaches want to do.  It is hard for a chef to cook with another man’s ingredients…you have to let the current chef shop.

Follow me on Twitter @GeorgeLing71

Sunday, April 07, 2013

Pre-draft Dolphins Series 1 of 3: Offense

Hello readers! I’m Oscar Villavicencio (OV for short), but my love of video games and internet handles makes it so that once I enter this online sphere I prefer Megaman.

Much like the blue bomber’s relentless tenacity, refusal to submit to treacherous hazards, and perseverance in the face of immeasurable odds and verbal barbs; so goes my love affair with The Miami Dolphins.  Shout out to Dave and my fellow contributors, only thing I love more than the Fins is a Dolfan. I currently reside in Gainesville, FL, and have lived here for the previous 5 years after growing up in Miami Lakes. I am a Dolfan for life.

This entry will serve as the first in a 3-part series highlighting draft needs by football phase: Offense, Defense, and Special Teams. I will be highlighting our position situation with some players the fins might be looking at.

Offense
Offensive Line- It serves us well to look at this unit as a whole rather than by position as a flex G/T that can fill the injury needs or spell the starters if need be are becoming more and more valuable. Philbin has a style of player he is looking for and I think this dolphins coach is among the best at evaluating offensive positions or just positions in general (this is another article but I want to make the point that Philbin knows his O-line particularly well).  In any event, the dolphins need depth at this position but primarily at tackle since Jake Long is now a Ram. We are locked up at center but need a long term solution at guard, though I don’t see Ireland drafting one of the elite talents so early at 12. Thankfully this is a deep position in the draft- but the dolphins would probably like to take a safe bet rather than a project.

Johnathan Cooper, G. UNC- Fits the mold of Philbin’s zone blocking scheme, the report is that he has elite quickness out of his stance and a fluid motion.

Chance Warmack G, Alabama- Big physical guard that doesn’t quite fit into the dolphins scheme, the report is that he is a plodder but very strong.

Lane Johnson T, Oklahoma- A fluid tackle, part of the big 3 blue chip tackle prospects along with Joeckel and Fisher. Don’t think the Fins can grab him at 12 but I think it’s worth noting that this would seal one of our remaining holes.

Wide Receiver- This position may look sealed up but the more depth, the better. The dolphins will make sure to have plenty of weapons available to Tannehill at all times, so this is technically a need without being a need. This is a passing league and if the dolphins would like to “keep up with the jones’s”, they know they need a stable of studs, not just also-rans (not a jab at our past receiving corps, but anyone would agree we need to get better separation at this position- hopefully Mike Wallace will change this). Expect later round picks as we will likely pass on Austin. Names like Quinton Patton or Justin Hunter come to mind.

Tavon Austin WR, WVU- Scary fast. If you watch any game film of him, it becomes evident rather quickly: he is an explosion. A reach at 12 but really for this elite speed, you kind of want to grab him before anyone else does. Fins fans may feel like Ted Ginn 2.0 but have no fear, Austin seems leagues tougher and more durable despite getting the “shies away from contact” tag.

Quinton Patton WR, LA tech- Excellent route runner with great shiftiness, hands, and quickness. The competition is a slight concern as he played in the WAC but you need only watch his electric cuts and fantastic grabs to know this is a gamer. Tremendous would-be addition to an already shapely WR corps and future #2 for many years.

Justin Hunter WR Tennessee- Diva tag for a player on an unruly Tennessee team (go gators) has the measurables to be a standout in the right locker room atmosphere with a QB who can get him the ball. Philbin doesn’t usually select players with this baggage.

Running Back- Not quite a position of need but can definitely see the dolphins taking a RB in any round that isn’t 1. Miller is blazing fast and early on last season, routinely outran his blocks as a result. Later on, he gave every indication that he is the dolphins’ zone one-cut runner and a threat on screens. Thomas, the bruising back we expected out of college, has only seemed to be bruised himself most of the time- but when in the game and healthy has proven he can make tough yards. The dolphins should get another big back to supplement their running game and bring the safeties in for #17.

Eddie Lacy, RB Alabama- A stretch at 12 with such a deep draft of running backs, Lacey has proven the consistency of tough, NFL-ready Alabama running backs. If he is there in the second round, would be a steal.

Le’Veon Bell RB MSU- A later round pick, this would certainly bolster the Fins run game. Heavy back with a nose for the endzone and a tough style, Philbin would probably not like the diva tag.

Marcus Lattimore RB USC- Lattimore’s stock fell after his brutal ACL tear last year having only played in 7 games, but there is no question about this players’ football ability. If he were to fall to the dolphins in the later rounds, I think that after some recovery time he can return to being one of the best football players I’ve ever seen.

Quarterback- I am of the Dolphins faithful that believes in Tannehill in spite of his so-so rookie performance STATS-wise due to the fact that he can push the football down field and produce yards from tough throws. I don’t disagree with the pundits who claim he would be taken 1st overall had he come out a year later; Ireland pulled the trigger and took the first step in building a franchise QB… Picking one. Nevertheless, The Fins GM has hinted at taking a QB in the later rounds and QB depth is very important as these bench players often become the centerpieces of some lucrative deals, trades, and buzz. The idea of trade bait is very alluring and to develop a QB ensures that you are always concerned with the future of the team. Consider it a travesty if the dolphins take a first round QB; they have Matt Moore who is among the best non starting QB’s in the league.

Landry Jones QB Oklahoma- I remember plenty of fans clamoring for this QB had he come out last year. Heck, some were willing to wait for this year. Not so. A disappointing final season that showed a lack of polish, he still managed to put up impressive numbers in a Sooner offense designed for it.

Jordan Rodgers QB Vanderbilt- Rodgers is the little brother of Super Bowl winning QB Aaron Rodgers   and they differ about an inch in listed height. Like his brother, Jordan is tough, a little bit of a runner, and plays with swagger. Unlike his brother, he doesn’t seem to push the ball deep with enough force. Some development would greatly benefit Rodgers.

Tight End- This is another area of need for the dolphins and a possible selection at 12 would be a stretch but if this fits the dolphins’ plan, I’d say go for it. Look at how influential the tight end has been in recent years, with names like Gronkowski and Graham tearing up opposing defenses. Both of those tight ends are complete players, while recently signed Dustin Keller is primarily viewed as a pass catcher (Do I have to mention Michael Egnew in this part? Michael Egnew.). The drafted Tight End should be able to provide the dolphins with a seam threat as well as help in run blocking since the bulk of the offense is run in single back sets. A very real possibility for the Dolphins as it is very likely both of the highly touted TE talents will still be on the board, Eifert and Ertz. I’m not sure what the dolphins will do at this position in the later rounds as perhaps the sting of Egnew may have Ireland shying away from the lanky split-out types. Tight End is traditionally viewed as a non-glamour spot, so at 12 seems over rated but these prospects are projecting as productive first year tight ends.

Tyler Eifert TE Notre Dame- Looked like a beast for the Irish making great catches and picking up the offense often splitting out wide. Solid blocker.

Zach Ertz TE Stanford- College football’s leading receiver for Tight Ends last year and compares very well to Eifert, they might even be neck and neck in terms of draft stock. Both these Tight Ends have hands, enough speed to turn some hook/underneath routes up field, and blocking skills to build upon at the pro level.  

Overall, I have a gut feeling that this GM-coach combo will provide us with fruitful drafts and I have every bit of confidence that the team will not select offense with their first pick- we have a lot of picks and there are better available players on the defensive side at 12.  I don’t believe in mock drafts or the million possibility guesswork in predicting a draft slot change. I have seen some film on all of these prospects but thanks to CBSsports.com for name, school, and other helpful information. Hope you enjoyed part one, I'd love to engender some discussion on the topic.

-Megaman

Welcome new bloggers

You'll be seeing some new posts over the next little while from a few new folks. 
Bob C will be joined by George, Carl, Oscar, and Seth...

And Richard will still be around too....and probably even less often (!) you might see a post from me.
 
Please let me know what you think!

Dave

Misdirection is the Key in completeing the Draft Plan

First:  Dave, thanks for this privilege to write for (and with) you.  I hope you enjoy my take!

So, its early April.  Its time for Jeff Ireland (Miami's GM) to bob-and-weave.  He doesn't want to show the other 31 GMs what he has planned.  Make no mistake: Ireland has a very clear plan.  And, he is not showing his hand!

Question:  Why is Jeff bringing in players to interview that will, by all accounts, be long-gone by the twelfth pick of the draft?

Answer:    He is making some of these GMs think he has plans to move up and take a highly touted DB, Milliner and Vaccaro.

Personally, I think he is planning to trade up and get one of the 3 stud Offensive Tackles, because the drop-off  in talent from the top 3 to the 4th (Fluker) on the list is as wide as the Grand Canyon.

Luke Joeckel*, OT, Texas A&M 
Eric Fisher, OT, Central Michigan  
Lane Johnson, OT, Oklahoma 


DJ Fluker, OT/G, from Alabama is a Guard really, and probably is a second round talent.    He looked good because of all of that other talent amassed by Nick Saban (I still hate you :-) at Bama.

If Miami wants a starter out of the draft at OT, Jeff Ireland must trade up and take one of those top three guys.

What do you think?

BobbyC
Robert F. Camacho, CPA

Welcome new blogger!

Bobby C will be joining Dave's Bitchin' blog, and I wanted to officially welcome him to the team!

You should be seeing his posts soon.

Enjoy!

Dave

Writers wanted

Anyone out there interested in writing about the Dolphins for this blog?

There's no pay, but you can literally get hundreds, perhaps thousands, of eyeballs on your thoughts.

Contact me dave@bitchindave.com if you are interested.