A Solid Foundation To Build From!


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Let’s face it, the Miami Dolphins aren’t going to the Super Bowl this year the chances are that they’ll probably end up in the middle of the draft somewhere between 10 and 17 and looking to add-on to a team that is making a transition.

I can see this offseason Miami getting rid of the last few veterans that’s been on this roster prior to Adam Gase taking over the next draft will be the fourth draft under Adam Gase and the current management so I thought I’d take a little time to look back at the last 3 drafts and see what potential we have on This team from a youth standpoint.

These last three years of drafts have produced some solid young potential and at least two potential Pro Bowlers (Tunsil & Howard) and a host of solid players that can be the  foundation to build from.

The Dolphins have done a better than average job drafting players and out of the last three drafts 2016 may have been the best.

In 2016 Miami drafted Laremy Tunsil as he slid down the draft board due to a video that was release just before the draft showing Laremy wearing a mask and taking a hit of marijuana. Laremy slid down the draft board and Miami was smart/fortunate enough to get a projected top talent at a premium position in the NFL and even though it took a little transition Laremy seems to be doing very well.

With the second pick in the 2016 draft the Dolphins took Xavien Howard who has  quickly emerged as one of the best young cornerbacks in the NFL leading the league this year with 7 INT’s, he’s definitely a future pro bowler.

The next player taken in the 2016 draft was RB Kenyan Drake who  is a scoring threat every time he touches the ball and with his special teams play as well as the Miami Miracle star he is in my opinion the best running back on the team and one of our top weapons on the team.

In 2016 Miami also drafted Jakeem Grant he’s by far one of the fastest players in the league, he’s done a very good job on returns and even making some special plays on offense, he too is a threat to score anytime he touch the ball and the Dolphins have done a very good job utilizing his skills. The 2016 draft brought us four players that are contributing to this team and hopefully will continue to do so for years to come.

Miami’s 2017 draft class is still a work in progress but there is some potential there so far not many of them have made inroads or shown flashes of being the potential star players like their counterparts taken in 2017.

Our first round pick in 2017 was Defensive end Charles Harris and I’m pretty sure even Charles will let you know that he is not living up to expectations he’s been somewhat of a disappointment so far and you don’t see flashes or signs that this kid is going to be the next Generation of pass-rushers for Miami, time is running out before the team must consider him a BUST it’s just too early to make that call right now.

There are some signs that we drafted some solid players (Not everybody can be a pro bowler) both defensive tackles Davon Godchaux and Vincent Taylor have done a good job and are solid young players on the defensive line rotation,  linebacker Raekwon McMillan who red-shirted 2017 with a season ending injury in his first preseason game as a Dolphin, so far this year is going through growing pains but I still think that he has some potential to be a solid player as his play is getting better.

The Dolphins also drafted offensive lineman Isaac Asiata who have yet to make an impact or  break the starting lineup, I hear it takes a few years for lineman to develop so hopefully next year he’ll be ready to compete for a starting role but so far he’s M.I.A!

Cornerback Cordrea Tankersley has been someone of a disappointment this year after starting opposite our young star Xavien Howard his rookie year he seem to have regressed and I’m not sure if it’s his fault or coaching for his lack of development. What’s going on with this kid,  he showed some potential early on his rookie season. I was surprised this year that he had fallen so far behind and out of favor that he was considered a third or fourth string player.

I would love to see him come back next year and whatever is holding him back to be solved because I thought that him and Xavien Howard would grow together as two young cornerbacks unfortunately while Howard has taken that next step up Tankersley has  fallen a few steps back.

The 2018 draft class other than Minkah Fitzpatrick and Jerome Baker has also had a slow start as hopefully next year others will come in and improve on their rookie seasons.

As you can see there are some young players that we can build a foundation from as we transition away from the older players for instance will make her Fitzpatrick take over for Rashad Jones next year?

Once again the most exciting part about the Dolphins will be the decisions they make this offseason regarding the players they draft in the upcoming 2019 NFL Draft and the free agents they sign and what veteran player or players will no longer be a Dolphin heading in 2019.

Despite the disappointing injury-marred season this year,  this team has played very well and to be in position to still make the playoffs in December is a credit to the coaching staff and our young talent taking that next step up!

I expect Miami to put all their chips in this offseason to position themselves to draft a quarterback or two to add to the young players they have hit on these past three Drafts as this team is coming into shape as a potential up and coming contender as their are not that many holes that need to be filled more than just adding depth as this season has shown that they still can upgrade the bottom of the roster.

Current/Rising Young Stars on the roster

  • Xavien Howard (25 years old)
  • Laremy Tunsil (24 years old)
  • Minkah Fitzpatrick (22 years old)
  • Ja’Wuan James (26 years old)
  • Kenny Stills (26 years old)
  • Albert Wilson (26 years old)
  • Kenyan Drake (24 years old)
  • Jakeem Grant (26 years old)
  • Jerome Baker (21 years old)
  • Raekwon McMillan (23 years old)

Solid Players who fill a need

  • Bobby McCain (25 years old)
  • Davon Godchaux (24 years old)
  • Vincent Taylor (24 years old)

 

Players that need to step it up

  • Charles Harris (23 years old)
  • Leantee Carro (24 years old)
  • Cordrea Tankersley (25 years old)
  • Isaac Asiata (25 years old)
  • DeVante Parker (25 years old)
  • Stephone Anthony (26 years old)

 

Waiting Their Turn

  • Kalen Ballage (22 years old)
  • Mike Gesicki (23 years old)
  • Durham Smythe (23 years old)

***UPDATE***This article was written and in the hopper to post Wed 12/19/18 just read on line Tuesday evening Xavien Howard has been voted to the pro bowl!!!!

Congratulations TO Xavien Howard well-earned and deserved!!

1 thought on “A Solid Foundation To Build From!”

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