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2015 Dolphins Draft Picks
These are my top 10 Linebacker Fits for Miami in the upcoming draft
Jaylon Smith-ILB-OLB-Notre Dame
I’ve already professed my love for Jaylon here before and now of course things got complicated with his devastating knee injury. The NFL loves this guy’s skill set comparing him to Patrick Willis. He’s exactly the kind of guy we need, a sideline to sideline demon that can sift through the garbage to stick ballcarriers.
Two NFL scouts speaking to Peter King indicated Notre Dame junior LB Jaylon Smith would have been a top-three pick had he been healthy.
The first scout, who was at the Fiesta Bowl, said Smith was a top-three pick. The other said Smith was a strong candidate to be the top pick overall. "There is not a defense he would not fit in," the second scout said. "This is a huge story." There are parallels here between Smith's situation and that of Todd Gurley last year, but Smith's injury may be more serious and it came roughly seven weeks later in the season than Gurley’s. "I know this is going to scare guys on the fence about coming out," said the scout who was at the Fiesta Bowl. (RotoWorld)
Explosive linebacker that closes quickly on ballcarriers. Great recovery speed. The kind of guy you can build a defense around. He can also cover as well as a corner. His natural pass-coverage skills are extremely impressive. NFL evaluators are going to love what Jack can do in the passing game.
He’s a likely top 10 pick.
UCLA LB Myles Jack (knee) says he'll have no limitations at next month's NFL combine.
In an interview with ESPN, Jack also said he has no regrets about entering the draft or his decision to leave school in November. Roughly a month after undergoing surgery to repair his torn meniscus, Jack moved to Arizona to begin his rehabilitation at the Fischer Institute of Physical Therapy and Performance. Some, including HC Jim Mora, questioned his decision to bolt school during the season and semester. Regardless, Jack's rehab went about as well as could have been expected. Jack is Rotoworld's No. 1 overall prospect. ESPN's Mel Kiper, meanwhile, calls the linebacker a "special talent" and projects him to go to the Giants with the No. 10 pick. Where will he play in the NFL? "Linebacker, maybe safety, maybe outside backer," Jack said. "It all depends on how the coaches see me." Jan 19 - 11:53 AM (RotoWorld)
This guy’s stock has been on the rise. He’s a hammer in the middle. The SEC defensive player of the year is highly productive and a natural leader. He’s not the athlete that Myles Jack is but he makes up for it with great instincts and effort.
Might go in the top 15.
Alabama HC Nick Saban said that he is "sure" that senior ILB Reggie Ragland will be a top-15 pick.
"Reggie Ragland last year had a second-round grade. I'm sure he'll be a top-15 pick this year," Saban told NFL.com. "If you want to do the math on that, that's like a $12-to-14 million dollar decision." The SEC's Defensive Player of the year and First-Team All-American was a tackling machine for the Crimson Tide in 2015. Ragland recorded 102 tackles, 60 solo stops, 6.5 tackles for loss, 2.5 sacks, two forced fumbles, seven pass breakups and six quarterback hurries. The 6-foot-2, 254-pound senior has been a major part of Alabama's success on defense this season.Jan 12 - 3:15 PM (RotoWorld)
Cravens is a hard nosed tweener prospect who played safety at USC but most scouts view him as a linebacker in the NFL. He has well-rounded and athletic skill-set to play a Kam Chancellor-like role at the NFL level. He’s drawn comparisons to Chancellor and Shaq Thompson.
Right now I see him in the bottom half of round 1.
USC junior LB/S Su'a Cravens impressed NFL.com's Daniel Jeremiah with his coverage ability Saturday against UCLA.
Coverage is a very important aspect of Cravens' evaluation. The NFL has not yet decided whether the 6-foot-1, 225-pound Cravens should lose weight and play safety or bulk up and play linebacker. "He matched up with UCLA's talented slot receiver Thomas Duarte on almost a down-by-down basis," Jeremiah wrote of Saturday's action. "Duarte did catch a touchdown pass with Cravens draped all over him, but I was very impressed with the man-cover skills displayed by the talented junior linebacker. He broke up several passes and almost came away with an interception. He was quick to react to the run game and fill the hole." So where does Jeremiah side in the position debate? "I prefer him as a 4-3 weakside linebacker at the next level, where he can run and chase against the run and match up with backs and tight ends in the passing game," he wrote. Sun, Nov 29, 2015 11:43:00 AM (RotoWorld)
Darron Lee-OLB-Ohio State
A very athletic pursuit linebacker, The 6-foot-2, 228-pounder had 66 tackles, 11 TFL, 4.5 sacks, an interception and a pair of forced fumbles this fall. The difference between a guy like him and Myles Jack is that Lee has a tendency to miss tackles. That needs to improve.
Has a shot to go in round 1, but might be available for Miami in round 2.
NFL Network Analyst Daniel Jeremiah describes Ohio State redshirt sophomore OLB Darron as the "perfect new school" linebacker.
The draft analyst tweeted that Lee showed "instincts" and the ability to "run", "cover" and "attack" the ball. If teams are looking for a potential three-down defender at the next level, the Ohio State prospect could fit that mold. Lee finished the 2015 season with 66 tackles (11 for loss), 4.5 sacks, an interception and a pair of forced fumbles. Jan 13 - 2:33 PM (RotoWorld)
Josh Perry-OLB-Ohio State
Perry is an every down linebacker who is effective against the run and excellent blitzing linebacker too.
He’s slated for round 2.
Ohio State LB Josh Perry will attend the Senior Bowl. Perry could be one of the better players in Mobile, AL, and linebacker might be the best position at the event. Perry and Darron Lee combine to form potentially the top tandem in the country. Perry is huge at 6'4/254 lbs but moves like a smaller player, which is a positive. Tue, Dec 1, 2015 12:25:00 PM
Ohio State senior OLB Josh Perry "won't receive many headlines and won't be as highly drafted as others on this list, but his combination of steady play on the field and coachable attitude off of it will earn him draftable grades around the league," postulates CBS Sports' Dane Brugler. "According to several close to the program, he is the 'consummate teammate' due to his mature mental make-up and leadership traits on and off the field," Brugler reported. "Perry only knows how to play one speed with a nonstop motor and aggressive approach that takes him out of plays at times, but also allows him to make stops other linebackers can't." The 6-foot-4, 254-pounder led the Buckeyes with 124 tackles and chipped in 8.5 TFL last year. "He has strong hands and wrists to take on blocks and finish tackles, not allowing road blocks to slow him down in pursuit," Brugler wrote. Perry runs a 4.73 forty. (RotoWorld)
Brothers is a classic inside linebacker prospect for the NFL, showing the toughness to take on blockers in the hole and an explosive pop to knock the ball free as a hitter. But he is not a special athlete and becomes a liability in coverage.
A likely 2nd rounder, possibly lasts til the 3rd rd.
Brothers put together one of the most prolific seasons in MU history in 2015, and was named a first-team All-SEC performer for his efforts. The tackling machine ended the season with 152 total tackles, which leads the nation (next-most is 140), while his 12.7 tackles per game mark is also tops in the country. He also leads the nation in 2015 with three blocked kicks on the year. The 152 tackles ranks as the 4th-most in Mizzou season history. (CBS Sports)
Very fast, very athletic. He’s very rangy and highly active around the ball. He’s a well kept secret. Made himself a lot of money this year.
A likely top 100 prospect.
LSU senior OLB Deion Jones accepted an invitation to the Senior Bowl. Jones is a speed-blessed prospect who can rove sideline-to-sideline but sometimes gets a little hectic and missteps. The 6-foot-1, 220-pounder has a known fan in CBS Sports draft analyst Dane Brugler, who praises his "reactive athleticism." CBS ranks Jones as the No. 5 senior outside linebacker prospect and a potential top-100 draft pick in the spring. Tue, Dec 8, 2015 05:22:00 PM (RotoWorld)
Scouts are all over the place projecting where Wright will go in the draft. Somewhat limited athletically but very productive when healthy and a true leader out there.
A likely 3rd rounder but could fall even further.
CBS Sports draft analyst Rob Rang wrote that Arizona junior LB Scooby Wright "boasts terrific instincts--consistently timing the snap count to squeeze through gaps to make plays behind the line of scrimmage."
In addition to his instincts, Rang notes that Wright also shows "active hands and keen spacial awareness." Due to injury, the 6-foot-1, 246-pound junior was limited to three games in 2015. He single-handedly destroyed New Mexico on Saturday, logging 15 tackles (3.5 for loss) and a pair of sacks in Arizona's 45-37 New Mexico Bowl victory. After the game, Wright declared for the 2016 NFL Draft. Opinions have varied as to where, exactly, he'll fall in said draft. A selection in the second or third round feels most logical at this point, though he could fall further back if teams are scared off by his lack of measurables. Mon, Dec 21, 2015 09:15:00 PM (RotoWorld)
TFY Draft Insider Tony Pauline believes Oklahoma senior edge rusher Eric Striker could be a "playmaker" in the proper system in the NFL.
"Striker plays vicious football and was very good up the field on the blitz but at the same time possesses solid instincts and too his credit showed a lot of discipline in coverage," Pauline writes. The 6-foot, 223-pounder continuously gets knocked for his size; however, the Oklahoma prospect keeps showing up big week after week. Striker has already recorded 33 tackles, with 4.5 sacks on the season. Tue, Oct 13, 2015 02:06:00 PM (RotoWorld)
We are still in the Divisional Playoffs for the NFL, something us Dolphins fans have not experienced in a LONG TIME. Unfortunately, us Dolphins fans have had to save our excitment for the NFL Draft. And also, the Dolphins again hired a new HC in Adam Gase, so we all as Dolphins fans are wanting to see what Coach Gase will bring to the Dolphins in 2016.
I've seen some early mocks for Miami and thought I would go ahead and put one out as well. I will add as well that a HUGE part of what Miami and all these teams do in the draft will be determined by what they do in free agency. Just from reading some of the articles and thoughts of Simon Clancy and Barry Jackson of the Miami Herald, I believe the Dolphins will be aggressive addressing the troublesome offensive guard spots. A name to keep an eye on is Baltimore Raven OG/OT Kelechi Osemele. 26 years old, Osemele is Big, Nasty & Physical and very good feet and movement. He is also versatile as well, as he played OLT the last few games of the season for the Ravens. He will be expensive, but he could certainly fill a hole at the OLG position and possibly move to OLT once Brandon Albert's contract is up. Other names to keep an eye on are Alex Boone of San Francisco, Evan Mathis of Denver, Brandon Brooks of Houston and Ben Jones, also with Houston. I think the Dolphins could possibly look to develop Jamal Douglas and Billy Turner at the ORG spot, and Douglas showed his versatility by coming in and playing well for C Mike Pouncey when he got hurt.
The Dolphins could also look at CB, FS and possibly LB in free agency as well. A couple of secondary personnel to keep an eye on are Cincinnati CB Leon Hall and FS Reggie Nelson. New DC Vance Joseph has a very good relationship with Hall, and Nelson is a Florida boy. It is not known if the Dolphins will try to restructure the contract of CB Brent Grimes, who is coming off a season in which he struggled and is on the wrong side of 30. Making matters worst, his wife, former radio personality Miko Grimes has been very vocal in her criticism of Miami, her last rant on Twitter gaining national attention. The Dolphins have talked with Grimes about his wife on several occasions as Miami Herald writer Armando Salguero pointed out a few weeks ago. While Hall has been injury prone, he has been very solid when healthy and is a bigger CB that knows Joseph system. Nelson, 32 years old is coming off a outstanding season with 8 interceptions, and has 30 career interceptions. Having a playmaker like Nelson next to SS Reshad Jones would give the Dolphins one of the better safety tandems in the NFL.
Free Agency and who Miami decides to let walk will effect the way the Dolphins approach this draft once again. With that said, let's take a look at my mock draft.
1) Vernon Hargreaves, CB, Florida, 5'11, 199 lbs - Along with FSU CB Jalen Ramsey and Clemson CB Mackensie Alexander, are considered the premier cornerbacks in this draft. Quick, physical, aggessive & smart and a very good open field tackler. Good in press coverage and very good in run support. Does not have ideal size, but makes up for it with how aggressive he is.
2) Kevin Dodd, DE, Clemson, 6'4, 275 lbs - Very quick, explosive with good hand placement and technique, can get skinny and has the ability to penetrate and disrupt. Had 23.5 tackles for loss and 12.0 sacks in 2015, behind his teammate and probably 1st round pick Shaq Lawson.
3) Scooby Wright, ILB, Arizona, 6'0, 246 lbs - Missed a large majority of the 2015 season with meniscus tear early in the season, then a foot sprain against UCLA when he returned. Came back fore the bowl game and played well. In his sophmore season in 2014, he had 163 tackles, 29 tackles for loss and 14.0 sacks and 6 forced fumbles. Quite simply, he is a playmaker.
4) Willie Beavers, OLT, Western Michgan, 6'5, 312 lbs - Miami needs to develop a OT that can play in case Brandon Albert or Ju'Juan James get's hurt, and a OT for the future. Beavers has the size, length, feet and quickness to develop into a quality OT in the NFL.
5) Deon Bush, FS, Miami, 6'1, 205 lbs - Michael Thomas and Walt Aikens have been disappointment in my eyes, and are special teams, depth type of players.
6) D.J Reader, DT, Clemson, 6'2, 325 lbs - The defensive line ended up being the strength of the Dolphins defense last year. They were talented and had quality depth. Miami could lose some of that depth this off season and need to keep the unit strong. Reader is versatile, as he can play over the center on in a 3 technique, moves well for a big man and can get pass rush pressure inside and is solid against the run. Had some personnel issues he had to resolve and missed some time this year with the Tigers.
7) Jacoby Brissett, QB, NC State, 6'3, 235 lbs - Logan Thomas is going to be given a chance to be out Matt Moore, who does also carry a nice salary cap number for a backup QB. Miami could look to bring in another, athletic QB to develop and Jacoby fits the mold. Very good size, speed and mobility and comes from a spread offense. Very good arm, but is still somewhat raw and needs work.