No need to beat around the bush. The Dolphins went into the 2018 draft with definite needs. The 2 most glaring needs being at linebacker and tight end. Not only did they address these needs, they doubled down on them. They didn’t just take one tight end and linebacker, they took two of each!
Miami started the night off selecting arguably the best safety in college football, Minkah Fitzpatrick out of Alabama.
Dolphins GM Chris Gire had this to say about their new first-round pick: “Impeccable character. At the end of the day, this guy is a football player, creates turnovers.”
Great intangibles are just part of the package that Fitzpatrick brought as a top-notch prospect. Along with his versatility in the secondary, he’s a high-character player who’s willing to do what it takes to succeed.
“A little different skill set than the other two guys. We’ll see how it will all play out.”
Since March, when the Bills traded left tackle Cordy Glenn and the 21st pick to Cincinnati to move up to the Bengals’ spot at #12, it was clear that the goal of the 2018 NFL draft for Bills’ General Manager Brandon Beane was to get the franchise quarterback the fans have been dreaming about.
Day 2 of the Miami Dolphins NFL draft did not disappoint.
As expected by many, the Dolphins selected Mike Gesicki a 6’6 249 pound TE out of Penn State. At 22 years of age, Gesicki, a former Basketball player, had been considered as a first round talent by many scouts.
His only knock was for a lack of blocking ability. Dolphins GM Chris Grier had nothing but praise for Gesicki, seemingly not too worried about his blocking, or lack thereof.
The first four all went in the top 10 but it took a while for Jackson to find a home. In what may have been the most joyful moment of the evening for a lot of his fans, the Ravens traded back into the first round to get him at 32. Two went to the AFC North and two went to the AFC East. Both those divisions are going to see the quality of competition rise significantly in the next couple years.
It’s the NFL Draft. Christmas for football fans. You hold your breath for that one split second while the name is called. Waiting for your gut reaction to kick in, ignoring the fear, thinking to yourself “Just don’t blow it”.
Then, exhaling in a sigh of relief that maybe, just maybe, this is the guy that will come and start to turn your team around.
The Dolphins selected at 11. Kinda mid-pack, which is where Miami seems to be every year. After the flurry of quarterbacks, some very talented guys dropped down the board, leaving Miami several players to choose from. A top 5 talent at 11…fans were poised and ready.
As the name Minkah Fitzpatrick, a cornerback from Alabama, rang out, the joy on many Dolphins fans faces became very obvious. Finally, the Dolphins selected an impact guy! Seeing fans unite and actually come together to enjoy this pick is a rare sight, not seen for many years down here.
Minkah Fitzpatrick who is 6-foot, 204 pounds was coached by arguably the greatest college football coach in history, although, not such a popular fella down here in South Beach, former Dolphins head coach Nick Saban. Saban had nothing but praise for this young man, and many in the Saban circle said that trait is rare to see coming from this particular coach.
Dolphins coaches raved about his extraordinary versatility. “He was a targeted player,” Dolphins general manager Chris Grier said. “Smart. Loves football. One of Nick Saban’s favorite players. Been a very good player for three years. Unique. He creates turnovers. He has had touchdown returns. We felt we could not pass on him.”
I like this kid, and I love this pick. Now onto round 2, which many Dolphins fans feel this is the pick that the Fins seem to struggle with.
Earlier we had listed the first 15 draft picks with a trade. Let’s see what happens with the rest of the teams and who will get drafted from 16-32. So here is the final attempt in Round 1 of the NFL Draft.
Free agency is pretty much on the quiet front with some players still trickling on to teams, such as quarterback Blaine Gabbert to the Tennessee Titans, and defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh to the Los Angeles Rams. But now it’s all about the draft and filling the holes that will make or break a team. So here is my attempt at Round 1 of the NFL Draft.
For the Bills, finding a franchise quarterback has been as epic a quest as the one for the Holy Grail. Since QB Jim Kellyretired in 1996, eleven different players have been at the position for Buffalo. That means, except for Drew Bledsoe (three seasons) and Ryan Fitzpatrick (four seasons), Bills’ starting QBs have lasted no more than one or two seasons each.
And the quest continues. Despite leading the team to the playoffs for the first time in seventeen years, current QB Tyrod Taylor is no lock to be the starter next season.Many NFL analysts believe the Bills will be looking to replace Taylor either through free agency or the draft.
As a fan reporter, I know and love the game of football, and especially my New England Patriots. Since I was a little girl, my dad and I would talk route running, defensive schemes and offense. For as long as I can remember, NFL football has been a passion, and I’m well-versed in the game and its rules (though some, as almost with everyone, elude me).
But what I’ve never been confident or strong in is the business side of football. I understood free agency, but the concept of a franchise tag and it’s pros and cons, as well as NFL contracts and the salary cap have always been a bit of a grey area for me. So, I decided to find out a little bit about all the numbers involved in team building in the sport of football.
To do that, I had to find someone who really knows about the salary cap. Luckily, Miguel Benzan (@patscap on Twitter), agreed to meet with me and educate me on the salary cap and his thoughts on free agency.