QB Ryan Tannehill
RB Reggie Bush/Lamar Miller timeshare
WRs Greg Jennings//Davone Bess/Stedman Bailey/Rishard Matthews
TE Fred Davis
LT Eric Fisher
LG Richie Incognito
C Mike Pouncey
RG Larry Warford
RT Jonathan Martin
DE Cameron Wake
DT Randy Starks
DT Paul Soliai
DE Margus Hunt
CB Sean Smith
CB David Amerson
SS Reshad Jones
FS Louis Delmas
OLB Koa Misi
MLB Karlos Dansby
OLB Kevin Burnett
This is of course predicated on letting Jake Long go. He has been a warrior. Picking him over Matt Ryan can be criticized, but for a long while Jake was a beast of a left tackle. Parcells is a guy from another time, when it was all about the trenches. Don’t get us wrong, it’s still largely about those trenches, but over the years the league has shifted everything toward passing. Skimping on QB for a lineman has never been riskier, and it certainly would have been nice to have ended our QB nightmare six years ago.
That being said, believing that Dr. T is going to be a heck of a QB, and acknowledging that left tackle is still hella-important, we draft the monster Eric Fisher at pick 12 to start from day one. A Greg Jennings reunion with “Smokin’ Joe” Philbin gives us a chance to wait at WR. First pick in round 2 we use to strengthen our already solid D, importing the freakish Margus Hunt from SMU to terrorize QBs opposite Cam Wake. He’s played on the same side as Wake, but he’s an unparalleled specimen and can get used to a change. We think Sean Smith has special potential. Resigning him (or tagging) and teaming him with late 2nd rounder David Amerson gives us the biggest CB tandem in football.
We like the depth of the 2013 WR crop, and nabbing Mountaineer playmaker Stedman Bailey in round 3, to throw into the mix with Jennings and Bess would be a smart move. Hell, let’s do it with the pick we got from the Bears in the notorious Brandon Marshall trade to help lessen the blow. Our second 3rd rounder is Kentucky OG Larry Warford. The guy has slugged it out anonymously at UK with all the big name SEC defenders, and has played well.
Louis Delmas and Fred Davis are two guys whose potential outweighs injury risk. A healthy Delmas teams with Reshad Jones would be a stellar tandem (for the record, we’d like to see Jimmy Wilson at safety if we don’t take the plunge on a free agent). Fred Davis was the Redskins leading receivers before he went down with an achilles injury. He’s expected back by May, and along with Jennings and Stedman Bailey would immediately breathe new life into our passing attack.
A word about Brian “Bang Bang” Hartline. We have loved him as a SoFlo Sea Mammal, but ultimately we were forced to rely on him so much that his FA value may have surpassed his on-field value. We’re not sold that if you gave say Rishard Matthews those 128 targets, he wouldn’t have been right there with Hartline statistically. If we show Hartline the money, we’ll end up overpaying for a 700yd, 3TD wideout 2013. Just our two cents.
EARLY DRAFT: 1) OT Eric Fisher. 2A) DE Margus Hunt 2B) CB David Amerson 3A) WR Stedman Bailey 3B) OG Larry Warford
FREE AGENT SIGNINGS/RE-SIGNINGS: WR Greg Jennings, FS Louis Delmas, TE Fred Davis, CB Sean Smith, DT Randy Starks, RB Reggie Bush
KEY FREE AGENT DEPARTURES/CUTS: LT Jake Long, WR Brian Hartline, CB Richard Marshall ($5.3 million salary in 2013?!), K Dan Carpenter ($2.675 million?!)
Our 2013 Miami Dolphins line up a defense that will line up one of the top safety tandems in the league, with two tall, athletic, young CBs. Against the run we should still be beastly, and adding the Estonian monster Hunt opposite Wake will give opposing QBs less time to find wideouts.
On offense, a rested Reggie Bush will continue to mentor big-play youngster Lamar Miller, improving his pass-catching and blocking responsibilities. Ryan Tannehill will drop back behind a dynamic, young O-line, and look for Greg Jennings. Checking down he may find slot Jedi Davone Bess, vertical threat TE Fred Davis, or big play newcomer Stedman Bailey.
Resigning our own FAs will take up much of our celebrated cap space. However, Starks and Bush should be able to be retained for reasonable contracts. Sean Smith can be tagged if a contract isn’t worked out. Trimming Richard Marshall and Dan Carpenter would clear substantial space. Jennings still has ability, but just missed the bulk of a season with injury and will be turning 30. We don’t expect his contract to approach Wallace or Bowe territory. Shrewd signings of Louis Delmas and Fred Davis could provide All Pro level play at two key positions.
Just our two cents, and we’d love to hear yours.
GO DOLPHINS, and feel free to follow us on Twitter @TheBottlenose