Tuesday, February 14, 2017

Clickbait: 8 Offseason Moves and Changes the Dolphins Should Make.

Some shameless fodder for the offseason, brought to you by a football starved correspondent.  Enjoy!

1) Sign Julius Thomas.  See an earlier article to this effect, but Thomas will be cut by the Jaguars and will move into the free agent market this spring. When that happens, a reunion with Adam Gase and an upgrade from Blake Bortles to Ryan Tannehill will resurrect Thomas's career...  And save the Dolphins an early pick at a position of need.

2) Lock up Kenny Stills.  I'm still angry about the drop in Seattle, but I am also fully aware of what Stills does to coverage schemes.  Tannehill's above-average deep ball and scrambling ability make Stills a unique threat on our roster.  We need him to ensure that we don't waste any picks at WR again this season.  Our budget for receiver projects (Caroo, Parker) is already spent.  This must be a defensive draft.

3) Draft linebackers early and often.  We need mobility and toughness in the middle.  Until Atlanta imploded, they showed what a pursuit defense can do to New England and its crew of small but agile skill players.  Draft two or three LB's and get with the speed on defense movement.

4) Draft a physical corner who can jam at the line.  Our D line needs cover to earn its (inflated) pay, and physical, big DB's are at a premium in the wide nine system.

5) Anticipate expiring contracts and get extensions for key players (Landry, Jones) done right.  Send a message to the NFL that the new regime in Miami rewards gifted contributors with sound deals.  We need to reverse the perception that we are a tight-fisted, exploitative franchise that would rather bargain shop than protect its own.  I still miss Charles Clay- let's not do that again.

6) Move on from BA and let Tunsil move to guard.  I like Albert- when this line was healthy, we were terrific.  However, we need to get younger and healthier.  It may be time to free up some cap room on the offensive line so we can attract some free agent guards and a higher quality backup center.  Doing so would also allow us to distribute more money to skill positions and the defensive secondary.  The Dolphins have more money caught up in their O-line than most other teams in football.

 7)  Overhaul our scouting department.  We over draft players that can be had in later rounds and whiff too much with high picks.  We need depth; teams with no depth generally can't scout.

8) Maintain draft day discipline.  No more trading up for non-impact players (Caroo.) Lost picks hurt so much in the depth department and lead to a roster stocked with linebackers no one else was willing to draft.  Trade down, not up.  Know your targets and stop chasing the draft.

Share your thoughts- and let's hope some intern somewhere is reading and taking a note here or there.

Jay Lopez
Like This Article ? :

7 comments

avatar

I agree, smart thought.

avatar

I like it Jay.some of those spots gotta be filled with free agents. Not a ton of draft picks even with compensatory additions.whatever happens,we have to get better just to get back to 10-6. Looks like a harder schedule next yr.

avatar

BA contributes way more in the locker room than just his LT position. We don't need to create more holes. You keep BA because we still need at least one guard as Bushrod is aging. We also need better depth at Center. We already have plenty of Cap room with projected cuts FA will be no problem for us.

Your assessment totally skips the D-Line which badly needs help. Branch was only mediocre keep him for depth if he's cheap enough. Dump Williams and Mitchell. Dump Misi and Jenkins. Those guys would only be for depth if they are cheap. Our front 7 as a whole needs several players to be fixed. We need better edge setting and run stopping, especially in the middle. That's all front 7. We need speed and tacking.

Kenny Stills isn't the only guy who can stretch the field. Sign him if the money is reasonable or replace him. No one thought we could replace all the TD's Matthews got but we did it with Stills. We can plug in someone else if necessary. Landry is more important as a tone setter and team leader etc. Lock him up soon. If you overpay Stills then you'll have too much tied up in WR's for the next several years. Btw, I don't miss Clay. He hasn't done anything since he left and wasn't the kind of TE we are looking for. You pay your players but you don't overpay. Nobody we lost last year did good enough to justify the money they cost and we replaced them for less money. Good for us.

Julius Thomas has never played a full season in the NFL since his drafting in 2011. Just what we need....one more injury prone player. There's better options like Martellus Bennett.

We already have physical corners. I wouldn't mind have another guy who can play the slot as that is a bit of a specialty. We also have more pressing needs before thinking about corners. (See front 7)

When it comes to depth we survived on depth last year because of injuries to starters. Our depth is not the problem, it getting some better starters.

So I would say, sign AND draft at LB, DT and DE. Add a true 6-6 tight end who can block and catch. - Draft or FA. Add on the Oline for depth and future starters. As usually grab a corner but don't make it high priority until other needs met.

avatar

Wrongo. Skip Julius Thomas. Draft another tackle to play guard and a center/guard for depth. Sign a free agent linebacker and keep Jenkins. Keep BA as he is worth more than the money. This way you have a back up tackle at both guard spots and depth behind Pouncey. When Miami's OL is good the team wins.

avatar

WE spend money but usually in the wrong places. Keep Stills, Landry, Jones. Eject Misi, Jenkins, Branch, Mitchell. Grab Jared Odrick back from JAX and another DE. We MUST have 2 great pursuing great tackling LB's. Haven't seen them since Zach THomas days. I still think to try Dion Jordan as a pass rusher and coverage guy for TE's. WE already spent the money-give him a shot but on a short leash. 1-2 CB's and a safety in the later round draft would help also. WE MUST MUST have a huge TE that can go down the seam and can block when needed. Need a C and move Pouncey to RG. Juwaun James better get his act together. Too many missed blocks and penalties. Frt Office needs to spend the $$ in the right places and change the perception that we're bargain hunters. Mr Ross-you wanna win? Tell Tannenbaum to spend the $$ on the positions we need. Look what Ajayi did when we had a healthy OL! If we can run and stop the run (for a change) we're deep in the playoffs next year.

avatar

trade back in the draft maybe with Jacksonville. Get 35 and 68 for 22. Trade Reshad Jones for a 2nd and 4th. With our two compensatory picks we now have 10 picks. Go DE, Center, OLB, ILB OG, CB, S, DE, DT, WR. Bye bye to Branden Albert, Koa Misi, Earl Mitchell, Dion Jordan, Jelani Jenkins. Can{t afford Stills, sign FA{s Marquise Goodwin WR, Lawrence Guy DE, Johnathon Morris Claiborn CB, and Bradley McDougald FS. We are younger, cheaper and better. Keep Bushrod and Young as backup tackles, keep Urbik and Steen as backup guards, keep our existing backup center, Pouncey to guard. DO sign Justin Thomas as TE. We get Tunsil, Pouncey, Elflein, Asiata and James as offensive line, a younger defensive line, a group of FAST linebackers, a 12'4 record

avatar

Cool observations. Lots of good ideas. Intern: take notes.