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.”
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.
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.
Once again, the Patriots walked into Miami the odds-on favorite and came out losers. Although the score doesn’t adequately reflect it, it was an ugly Monday Night Football game. One the Patriots lost to the division rival Miami Dolphins 20-27.
It was a game where quarterback Tom Brady didn’t look like Tom Brady. It took 2 1/2 quarters of football before a Patriots wide receiver (Danny Amendola) caught a pass. And New England went 0 for 11 on 3rd down conversions.
Let that sink in, folks…the Patriots could not convert a single third down. The last time the Patriots were that inept at converting on third downs was in 1991. I remember those days – back when the Patriots were really bad – they hadn’t won more than 10 games since 1986 and this particular season, they went 6-10. Does anyone remember head coach Dick MacPherson? Nah…me either.
New offensive coordinator Bill Musgrave drew up a game plan that was better than we’d seen in a while. It was aimed to take advantage of every weakness Miami has.
Unfortunately, our quarterback was bad; 1.8 QBR bad. Plus, the receivers didn’t help much. Our offensive line often gave quarterback Trevor Siemian time to throw, but the longer the game went on, the more Miami saw there was no deep threat, so they started rushing/blitzing often. 7 vs 5 isn’t going to end well.
How many women can remember those special moments with their mothers growing up? Being able to join your mom shopping, or going to get your hair and nails done. My memories are quite the opposite. Mine consisted of Bob Griese, Larry Csonka, and Mercury Morris. When I was 4 yrs old I could name every starting player for the Miami Dolphins. Sundays were for football. Mom and I would get up, pack the truck, and off to the stadium we would go. We did this every Sunday for over 25 yrs.
Sadly, bad health caught up with her. She was diagnosed with stage 4 colon cancer. I have to say, she never missed a beat even after the surgeries, chemo, and radiation. She always found ways to talk about the Dolphins, how the game went or the new stadium. Regardless of how hard the treatments were, she always wanted to know the score of the Dolphins game.
I always tell people I was born a Dolphins fan. I have learned about and studied this game since I could remember. I’ve been blessed these last couple years to follow my dream and officially report on the team my mom taught me to love.
After 5 years of battling cancer, my mom is now cancer free. We decided it was time. Time for her to see her favorite team and their beautiful new home. With the help of some very special people, Scott Stone, and Jason Jenkins, my mother had a perfect day.
No words will ever be enough to say thank you. The Miami Dolphins organization is lucky to have such loyal and caring people who celebrate and care about the fans. Because of these two gentlemen, my mom was given the opportunity to attend pre-game activities on the field. This is something she has always dreamed of doing.
Every game I attend I think about my mom and those Sundays we spent together. Those are the memories I will forever cherish. But on Sunday, I couldn’t even begin to tell you the emotions I was feeling. Seeing her face as we walked onto that field, there are simply no words. She just stood there taking it all in. I always say “there’s always things bigger than the game” but in reality, this game is like family to me, and there is nothing more important than family!
Division rival Miami Dolphins came to Foxborough Sunday to take on the Patriots. The Patriots, who had won six in a row, were returning from their win over the Raiders in Mexico City. Division games are always difficult. They’re heated and emotional. Even though the Dolphins were without their starting quarterback Jay Cutler, Matt Moore is one of the better back up QBs in the league. All week I heard about Moore’s great connection with wide receiver Kenny Stills. It still wasn’t enough to beat the Patriots.
Week 7 was full of surprises, and I still ended up picking 10 games correctly. Week 8 is likely to be a bit more predictable, but if the trend of 2017 being weird continues, we could all be shocked by some of the outcomes. I’m a bit late getting my column written, so for now, I’m posting my picks for the first six games of the week. I’ll update this a bit later with the remaining games. Here’s to Week 8!
Miami Dolphins (4-2) @ Baltimore Ravens (3-4)
Thursday Night Football pits the 31st ranked offense and 18th ranked defense of the Ravens against the 32nd ranked offense and 10th ranked defense of the Dolphins. With rankings like those, it’s pretty clear this game will be decided by the defense that plays the most complete game.
My love of the NFL game started when I was a teenager, playing a board game called Strat-O-Matic Football with one of my brothers. Basically, it is the old school version of a Madden NFL video game. We spent many fun hours coaching our teams. The game came down to strategy, both offense and defense, and a simple roll of the dice.
I have had a soft spot for the Miami Dolphins since the ‘80s. It was during their dominant years with quarterback Dan Marino that I really became hooked. I attended my first live NFL game November 18, 2010 at SunLife Stadium in Miami. What a milestone.