What brilliant draft-board maneuvering by the Dolphins! After moving back (and then up) to No. 6, they get the guy they most likely would have targeted at No. 3 while banking future high picks in the process. Provided four quarterbacks kick off the draft, the Dolphins would be guaranteed one of Penei Sewell or Chase and would likely be happy in either scenario.
Opting out in 2020, Chase, the 2019 Biletnikoff Award recipient, would have been the WR1 had he been eligible to join last year's talent-laden crop of wide receivers. As a true sophomore and a 19-year-old, Chase dominated SEC competition to the tune of 84 receptions for 1,780 yards (21.2 Y/R) and 20 touchdowns. Not only did he lead the country in yardage and touchdowns, no receiver had more 15-yard receptions (46) or 25-yard receptions (25) than Chase in 2019.
Emmanuel Ogbah led the Dolphins with a career-high nine sacks, but they parted ways this offseason with Kyle Van Noy (six) and Shaq Lawson (four), whom they just added last offseason. In addition, Ogbah is entering a contract year.
Paye is a freakish athlete that topped Bruce Feldman's Freaks' List heading into last season. Given his rare physical traits for his size and his tenacity, Paye's best football is ahead of him and his upside is through the roof if he can put it all together.
I love Miami trading out of No. 3, picking up additional draft picks -- including a 2023 first-rounder -- and still getting one of the players it would have been looking at in its original slot. Will Fuller V is only on a one-year deal, and bringing in Smith to join him and DeVante Parker would give Tua Tagovailoa the weapons he needs in the passing game. Smith is an explosive and savvy route runner, and let's not forget that he was one of Tagovailoa's favorite targets in Tuscaloosa.
With DeVonta Smith off to help Tua Tagovailoa, we can now look to protection. Vera-Tucker has played tackle, but he's a better fit at guard in the NFL. Miami took 34 sacks last season, and Tagovailoa was blitzed at the fourth-highest rate in the league (35.3% of his dropbacks).
After trading down and then back up, the Dolphins have plenty of options. Miami is relying on a lot of young faces on the offensive line, so it wouldn't hurt to have a star quality tackle, especially if last year's first-round pick Austin Jackson doesn't pan out. Sewell is considered a can't-miss prospect with All-Pro potential.
Oweh didn't record a sack for the Nittany Lions in 2020, but there just aren't many 6-5, 257-pound athletes who can run a 40-yard dash in 4.36 seconds, bench press 225 pounds 21 times and leap 39.5 inches. The Dolphins could use that kind of skill set to add some burst to a young defensive line.
In the last iteration of the mock, I had predicted the Dolphins would potentially trade down, which I got right. What I did not foresee coming was the Dolphins already trading back up to sixth overall, which makes me think they strongly believe a player they would have considered at No. 3 will still be here at No. 6.
PFF had the Dolphins ranked as the 20th best pass blocking and 30th ranked run blocking unit in the league last year so they could use an immediate upgrade there. Even though Sewell sat out all of last season, he has been long thought to be the best offensive tackle in this draft and has all the characteristics of a cornerstone tackle in the NFL.
Paye did not disappoint at his pro day and solidified his status as one of the first defensive lineman to be selected in this draft. Paye has the ability to create pressure as a traditional end or showed he has the speed to stand up and rush off the edge as displayed by his 4.52 40 time.
It's scary that a 10-win team with such a good coach and plenty of young talent also has four picks in the top 50. The Dolphins are desperate for wide receivers who can get open and it's clear that will be the target here (or they wouldn't have made this deal with the Eagles). Miami mimics Cincinnati by reuniting a top receiving prospect with his old college quarterback. A healthy Waddle is the most explosive all-around athlete at receiver in this class and his addition will only expedite former Crimson Tide teammate Tua Tagovailoa's development.
One way to alleviate the pressure off of a young quarterback is to give him a dynamic running back who is a three-down threat and capable of scoring every time the ball is in his hands. Etienne, a three-time All-American and the ACC's career rushing leader, fits the bill perfectly.
Tua Tagovailoa -- if he isn't part of a package for embattled Deshaun Watson -- can use an alpha dog No. 1 receiver, and injury-prone deep threat Will Fuller isn't it. Offensive tackle Penei Sewell is tempting, but Chris Grier and Brian Flores drafted three offensive linemen last year, including No. 1b pick LT Austin Jackson.
After trading out of the no. 3 spot, the Dolphins turned around and immediately moved back up to no. 6 via a trade with the Eagles. The latter move gives Miami a chance to land one of the top pass catchers in this draft, all of whom would still be available in this scenario. Chase is the top-ranked receiver on my board and brings a physical presence that would complement newly signed free agent Will Fuller's speed. He'd give Tua Tagovailoa a good chance to break out in his second NFL season.
After hitting a home run early in the draft by trading back and landing Ja'Marr Chase, the Dolphins hit another one here by picking one of my favorite players in this entire class. Owusu-Koramoah has an extraordinary skill set that should allow him to float between linebacker and safety duties, providing Brian Flores with a movable chess piece on defense. The Notre Dame star is a ferocious defender who plays with infectious intensity.
First, let's take a second to appreciate Miami's serendipity: Had Laremy Tunsil's Twitter not been hacked on draft night in 2016, he likely would not have fallen to the Dolphins, who in turn would not eventually have turned him into four first-round picks (the Texans' first-rounder last year, this pick and the 49ers' next two first-round picks) and a third-rounder. Now, onto this pick, which could be a "best player available" situation. In this case, they stay in state and add a dynamic playmaker for Tua Tagovailoa. Kyle Pitts was the top target in Florida's high-octane offense thanks to his rare mix of size, speed, body control, route-running ability and hands. He can line up anywhere on offense and immediately be a mismatch for whoever is covering him, and even though his listed position is tight end, he might be just as good as the actual receivers in this class.
After getting an offensive playmaker at the top of the draft, the Dolphins don't look too far to add some pass-rush help to an already stout defense. After transferring from UCLA, Jaelan Phillips had a breakout season in Miami with eight sacks and 15 1/2 tackles for loss. He uses his size, speed and power very well against both the run and the pass.