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Kiper: Dolphins will debate McClain and Bryant

ESPN draft guru Mel Kiper has the Dolphins picking Alabama inside linebacker Rolando McClain with their No. 12 overall pick of the first round in the upcoming draft.

But Kiper believes the Dolphins will have a healthy and perhaps heated discussion whether to go with McClain or Oklahoma State's Dez Bryant if the wide receiver is on the board when Miami selects.

"Dez Bryant, I think he'll be in the discussion, but you look at him and he could go higher," Kiper said today on a nationwide conference call. "I have him going at No. 10 to Denver still ... [The Dolphins] certainly need wide receiver help and you got to get it at some point and I think they will try get in this draft.

"But at that point, I think McClain would be the best option if Bryant's gone. And even if Bryant's there it's going to be a heck of a discussion, I would think, even if Bryant is still on the board."

Yeah, I could see that discussion going something like this:

Jeff Ireland: Bill, we've got a wide receiver and a linebacker on the board and ...

Bill Parcells: I'm Bill freakin' Parcells and I love linebackers.

Ireland: Linebacker it is.

Seriously, the Parcells penchant for drafting linebackers is well-known. And picking McClain, whom Kiper says has "a Ray Lewis-type enthusiasm and Bill Parcells will see that in McClain," seems logical.

"You look at Parcells when he was with the Giants and at other places, he loves linebackers that have that type of ability, especially guys with his kind of size too, with LT and Carl Banks and those type of guys," Kiper said. "This is an inside linebacker that looks like an outside linebacker."

And that is where Kiper and I disagree. I believe the Dolphins have a greater need at OLB than ILB. But Kiper doesn't see any OLB as worthy of the No. 12 selection.

I believe Michigan's Brandon Graham is more than worthy of that pick, talk of his short arms be damned. I love Graham! I have put in adoption papers for Graham because I want that guy in my family if he's not going to be on the Dolphins!

And here's the kicker, despite saying Graham rates around No. 20-32, Kiper also seems to love Graham.

"I've liked him all along, that's the one guy I've been consistent with all the way through," Kiper said. "He's got that great work ethic, he comes hard every play. He took advantage of some offensive tackles that were very suspect, obviously, and in the NFL that's not the case."

Kiper believes Graham will somehow wind up chasing Dolphins quarterbacks someday, either for a Miami division foe, or a team the Dolphins must eventually beat to become great.

"I actually have him going to New England in the latest projection I did from the standpoint of being a 3-4 outside backer," Kiper said. "As a 4-3 defensive end situational guy if Indianapolis looks at him in that rotation with [Dwight] Freeney and Robert Mathis it makes sense. I think his character and every game bringing it, the way he did production-wise is the reason why he's a pick to go now between 20 and 32."

I think that's precisely the reason the Dolphins should take him at No. 12. The kid brings it every play. Every single play. And he brings it with speed and explosion and good instinct and discipline.

Why isn't he rated higher?

Anyway, if the Dolphins decide to address their 3-4 OLB need later in the draft, Kiper has a handful of guys rated after the first round. They are:

Jerry Hughes of TCU, Ricky Sapp from Clemson, Antonio Coleman at Auburn, Cameron Sheffield at Troy, Eric Norwood at South Carolina. Kiper had Wisconsin's O'Brian Schofield rated as a first-rounder until he blew out his knee at the Senior Bowl in January.

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If we get Boldin we will take none of the shi**y WR left in this draft. I said it yesterday and will say it again... I want no part of any receiver in this draft...

IMHO: Hartline's good, showed steady improvement (maybe even at times dramatic improvement) through the year, and is still just scratching his potential.

I think we'll be liking him alot on the years to come.

Plus --- AND PLEASE I know this is secondary -- if you've ever heard him on radio he's funny, forthright, and also good club spokesman (did Haiti stuff for team during semi-impromptu fundraiser at LandLife stadium, etc.).

LOL @ just because. yes he did. Fili miola at # 1.

Mando,

You have outdone yourself with your reporting this time. Sometimes you have topics that don't matter to me as much but, that is the nature of beast in your position. It is a relentless cycle to constantly come up with new threads and have them all attract viewers. Hat's off to you as you do a good job and have done it over a long period.

I concur 1000% with your Brandon Graham being the Def choice that would help the Fins the most. The one constant that makes great players great is that they want it bad enough. Peyton studies so much it's almost an unfair advantage. Ever watch a Ray Lewis warm-up and wonder if he want's to knock the dog snot out of any ballcarrier? You think Jerry Rice's coah Bill Walsh (Supposedly too slow) ever wondered "Hey I wonder if Jerry is getting his workouts in?" The answer is a universal "Hell NO!"

The greats have it in them to be great. Sometimes their creator deals them a more difficult hand and doesn't bless them with a cheetahs speed or the strength of 2 men. That seems to make guys like Zack Thomas (Too small, too slow) or Steve Largent (Too small, too slow) dig in even more. They will show doubters that they can not only do it but excel and do it better than most any that ever played.

The Hall of Fame is littered with stories of players like this.

If any doubters want to know if it's possible for a guy with less than King Kong's numbers like Brandon Graham to succeed look have to simply know others have done it.

Sam Mills Neptune, NEW JERSEY's finest ever LB played ILB in the NFL until he was freakin 37 years old! He played with New Orleans mostly and was nick named the "Field Mouse" he was so small. How does 5 foot 9 inches and 226lbs sound for striking fear into defenders as an Inside Linebacker? It's almost ludicris if you think about it. He still is the oldest player of record to return a fumble for a TD at 37 years old.

My point I am making is that LB/DE Brandon Graham is a pure football player and also soon to be Mando's adopted son apparently (LOL). He will die with more "Charlie Hustle" plays made than most other bigger, stronger, faster football players in any venue. He has that it factor.

His slightly less than stellar height, shorter arms make it fair to ding him at some level. I say revert back to his production in college. Watch him go around very highly touted OT Baluga in the Senior Bowl in route to collecting Def MVP honors. Baluga is an OT that will go in the top 20 picks so he is no scrub.

I see great effort on every play as Mando has pointed out and his change of direction, hand fighting techniques, and diagnosing of plays are all super assets. He Led the Nation in Tackles for Losses at Michigan in 09! He will pressure the QB and stop ANYTHING from running wide on his side (Bootlegs, Reverses, Sweeps etc.).

I know others may see DT Dan Willaims as the logical choice at #12. I like him a lot but I think the combo of OLB Brandon Graham and say NT Cam Thomas trumps NT Dan Williams and some other OLB in my humble opinion.

Cheers,

Don't sleep on Demaryious Thomas and Arrelious Benn (say those names 3 times fast) if they make it down to our 2nd Round pick I think they are worth the pick (provided we don't have a trade for an established WR in place of course).

Just so everyone is clear...it's "Shore up"...not "Sure up" the ILB position. Btw, CROWDER SUCKS!

Combine predictions involving the Miami Dolphins:

Prediction: In the combine, Derrick Morgan will show that he has the athleticism to play OLB and completely mess up everyone's consensus opinion of Brandon Graham as the #1 OLB.

Prediction #2: Sean Weatherspoon will show superior coverage skills to Rolando McClain at the combine and narrow the gap considerably between the 2 players.

Prediction #3: Nobody will think of Dan Williams as a reach at #12 anymore and a growing number of people will worry that we won't even have a crack at him with Denver have a sorry @ss DL picking 2 spots in front of us.

Concerns for Mando or NJ regarding Brandon Graham...

Guys,why is Brandon Graham rated so highly all of a sudden due to a good Senior Bowl game? For months,no one had Graham break the 2nd round but now,he's a sure fire 1st rounder. I guess i'm just alittle bit worried people are judging him by one good game.

Living in England,it's pretty impossible to watch college games so dont know much about him apart from what so called 'experts' say.

NJ,whats your take on this guy? Is he that good?


If this rumour of Eric Berry available at #12 being true (which I seriously doubt), then there is no debate. behind Suh, he was the best defensive player in the nation last year. And third best player that I saw playing college ball last year behind Suh and Toby Gerhart.

Datajack, does Welker get open downfield like Hartline? I love and miss Welker, but his specialty isn't downfield. Hartline isn't speedy fast, but he is sneaky quick 20-25 yards out. Which is what Sparano(who I'm beginning to wonder about)calls chunk yards. So, while Hartline isn't out running his coverage, he is out thinking it. This isn't going to go unnoticed.

Craig Miller @1:27,

Mike Mamula was a workout warrior that went to the combine and wowed everyone with his eye popping numbers.

Brandon Graham doesn't have the big numbers that other may have physically. He just simply produces like crazy.

I am not sure your comparison works Mike.

Cheers,

Mark, Graham is the real deal. He would have been a steal as a 2nd rdr all along. A person who's opinion I value above all others assured me of brandon graham and Donovan Warren of Michigan as sure fire NFL impact players.

Jeff Ireland: Bill, we've got a wide receiver and a linebacker on the board and ...

Bill Parcells: I'm Bill freakin' Parcells and I love linebackers.

Ireland: Linebacker it is.

HAHAHAHAHAHA Love it Mando

Bulaga wasnt in the Senior Bowl.....

Anyone else watching this Arsenal - Porto champions league match? If only every game was this exciting.

Toby Gerhardt for RB,HB. Get Mclain first, Get GIAnts to give you Ramses Barden somehow... Or even Quan cosby.. Fill all other needs in draft after that. heck nobody even knows but theres some awesome players to be had , just need to get the from big schools, forget these no namers... The U or nebraske.. Asante for example. We will do good especiALLY IF WE COULD GET rAMSES bARDEN...

Really Mark?

So how would you feel if the Fins picked Graham at 12? Too much of a reach or good pick?

Really Mark?

So how would you feel if the Fins picked Graham at 12? Too much of a reach or good pick?

The only offensive player I would be satisfied with in the first round is Spiller. And no I won't drop that idea because he is just nasty. Indiana said it earlier, Bryant might holdout for more money considering his agent is Eugene Parker. We are still suffering the after effects of drafting a WR in the 1st round with stone hands Ginn. I don't think McClain is the best choice either. I think we could trade down and get another 2nd rounder. In the long ruun career wise, I think Spikes will have a more productive career than McClain.

WestVaFins - I am not saying to sign him so an old person can play with his favorite team. I am saying sign him because we need help at LB and he can provide us that help we need. If you look at talent and talent only JT belongs on the team. It has nothing to do with an "old person playing with favorite team"

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Rm7WRye9Bm0&feature=PlayList&p=6E88276DFD731940&playnext=1&playnext_from=PL&index=5

I love Brandon Graham, I really do. But I'm the small camp that believes that Derrick Morgan or Georgia Tech can play OLB at the NFL level. If he proves that beyond any doubt at the combine than he should be the #1 OLB on the board, period. Another complication is that he might not even be there at #12 either because he also projects as an All Pro in a conventional 4-3 defense as a DE.

In addition, I think OLB is stocked more than any other position that the Dolphins need for defense and by comparison, ILB and NT and very thin so I don't condone picking any OLB at #12, even if he's the consensus best.

By Comparison, ILB - you have McClain and Sean Weatherspoon who look like sure shots. Then Brandon Spikes is a level below - after that - buyer beware.

NT - Dan Williams is a sure fire 1st rounder. After that the next 2 guys - Terrel Troupe and Cam Thomas are a serious notch below. They lack the same physical talents that Williams has.

But as I said earlier, the only guy that makes me shift from this board entirely is if Eric Berry is by some miracle of God still on the board.

I'm , i'm not judging graham by te senior bowl game. He went up against some below average OL who were together only a week, I'm going by the senior bowl practices all week and his entire year at michigan. he'll go in the 20-32 area.

NJ PHIN @ 1:14,

What the heck bro? I thought you used logic on your post?

Only Rob has concerns about McClain...Hello, the McShay article I pointed out that you poo poo'd.

Plus you are insane if you are saying that all 6-4 258lbs men hit hard. Body type and size don;t always equate to hardest hitters. Ronnie Lott was not a big safety...what do you think he hit like?

I am here to tell you I think McClains hits are very weak for a guy his size.

How come I point out REAL GAME video of your guy McClain and it barely shows any big devastating hits? A free straight line run to a hapless QB because the othe DEF guys parted the red sea for him doesn't count.

You link me ALL the crazy game footage tape that I should be watching that proves he is such a beast...I haven't seen it.

PLEASE DONT TURN THIS INTO A ME VS YOU CONVO!!!

I want to compare your guy McClain straight up to my guy in Brandon Graham..that's it. Just saying I am an off base loon and your award winner for the day will only make you look bad.

I want website links... actual game footage of McClain that changes my mind... that's the simple challenge.

Cheers,

NJ do you see Capers in the first three rounds??????????

Rob in OC - You realize your novels do not get read on this blog by many people? I would say maybe 5% ready them. Shorten them up some and I may consider reading what you say

VOTE NO FOR MCLAIN....


I'VE never seen a guy so big have difficulty to tackle smaller opponents by himself. In the NFL he needs gang tackle support.

Im shocked after watching the vids

I love JT. Really I do, and he will probably want to sign in Miami or nowhere, but he is not 25 anymore, and will NOT be here when the Dolphins get to the promised land.

As much as it pains me to say it, JT should not be a Dolphin next year.

Rob you are KILLING ME!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

LOOK IF THE TUNA AND HIS GUYS CANT SEE THAT OUR OFFENSE IS CLOSE TO BEING AWESOME, THEN I DONT KNOW WHAT TO SAY...GINN IS FAST, BROWN AND WILLIAMS SCARE PEOPLE, ONE REALLY GOOD #1 RECEIVER WILL OPEN UP THE LINE FOR RICKY AND RONNIE, WHILE THERE YOUNG. NO BRAINER. wr THEN dEFENSE........RB LIKE LAGARETTE BLOUNT OR TOBY GERHARDT WOULD BE BETTER FOR FUTURE THAN lEX OR COBBS. THIS IS ABSURD.. COBBS MAY BE O.K.. BUT THATS WHY MIA IS 3RD..OR GETTING BEAT. THIS MENTALITY...THEY NEED TO CHANGE WITH THE OBVIOUS.....MAN UP...QUIT MAKING UP EXCUSES AND WITH 2 FAST WR AND OUR RBS, WE COULD SCARE THEM ALL... ASK INDY, WE ALMOST SLAPPED THEM A NEW ONE AS WELL AS no SAINTS... JUST DONT HAVE THAT KILLER AT wr...IF WE DID THIS GAME IS DIFFRENT AS WELL AS A FEW DEFENSE STRONG AND FAST FOLKS..

Sand in Shoes,

Taylor will be a Dolphin next year, unless of course Moses parts the red sea......again.

Sand in Shoes - What is your reasoning for this thought? You is better that can replace him?

YAY for sand in shoes smart guy!!!!!!!!!!

Rob in oc , you mean like the same logic or game film you saw that had you saying B graham whopped up on Bryan baluga in the senior bowl ?? Really ??? bryan baluga was a junior who Declared for the draft, Not only wasn't he at the senior bowl but he can't go because he was ajunior. It makes me wonder what video's and film you're watching. who's the one that looks bad ?? No offense , CHEERS !!

perspective,

Hartline was a state champion in the 400 hurdles in HS. He absolutely does have speed.

VOTE YES for BEN WATSON

I will take Sergio Kindle over ("alligator arms") Graham if given the choice.

Hartline is the fastest white dude on the team, except for Pat White

WOW VONN (MRS SHIN) just won gold. Heart of the champion

rob , How's that for a challenge ???

big deal, bruised shin. only a chick would complain about that injury.

Ok... Will see how high Graham goes after bench pressing 225 40 times and runs 4.6 at 255 lbs. The guy is not only a guy who loves the game but physically he will show at the combine how much of a beast he really is. He will go top 15. The only knock is his height and arm length, but he uses his hands well and is very technically sound... Derrick Morgan does look more like DaMarcus Ware. He maybe the pick.

Bryan Baluga played great against Derrick Morgan in the bowl game... Maybe that is what Rob was talking about.

LOOK IF THE TUNA AND HIS GUYS CANT SEE THAT OUR OFFENSE IS CLOSE TO BEING AWESOME, THEN I DONT KNOW WHAT TO SAY...GINN IS FAST, BROWN AND WILLIAMS SCARE PEOPLE, ONE REALLY GOOD #1 RECEIVER WILL OPEN UP THE LINE FOR RICKY AND RONNIE, WHILE THERE YOUNG. NO BRAINER. wr THEN dEFENSE........RB LIKE LAGARETTE BLOUNT OR TOBY GERHARDT WOULD BE BETTER FOR FUTURE THAN lEX OR COBBS. THIS IS ABSURD.. COBBS MAY BE O.K.. BUT THATS WHY MIA IS 3RD..OR GETTING BEAT. THIS MENTALITY...THEY NEED TO CHANGE WITH THE OBVIOUS.....MAN UP...QUIT MAKING UP EXCUSES AND WITH 2 FAST WR AND OUR RBS, WE COULD SCARE THEM ALL... ASK INDY, WE ALMOST SLAPPED THEM A NEW ONE AS WELL AS no SAINTS... JUST DONT HAVE THAT KILLER AT wr...IF WE DID THIS GAME IS DIFFRENT AS WELL AS A FEW DEFENSE STRONG AND FAST FOLKS..OH AND GET BETTER AT THE CHESS GAME.....COACHES....WE LOST BECAUSE OF YOUR ARROGANCE IN DEFENSE AND OFFENSE SUMTIMES....RUN, RUN RUN THEN THROW...YOU DICTATE...LIKE YOU DID TO INDY AND NORLINS...JUST COULDNT CLOSE.....ASK YOUR SELF y... HOUSTON BEATS US EVERYTIME........y.....I KNOW WHY...

Waterboy - Pat White is not whiteso he cant compete for the fastest white dude on the team

Indiana:
I don't care who replaces him. Someone that is not 36. We (the Dolphins) are not winning the Super Bowl next year.

It is time to get Cameron Wake, Charlie Anderson, Quentin Moses, Erik Walden, and hopefully a draft pick or two some playing time. They might even sign a young free agent - maybe even an RFA - and that person will also need snaps.

Bottom line is the 'phins need some young LBs and they need a year or two to play together. JT will not add anything to the team after this year.

I hate it, but he needs to ride off into the sunset.

Sorry, I know it's a broken record but I also wish you would shorten your posts Rob. I wouldn't care if you were an idiot who spouted a bunch of nonsense but I respect your opinion and would prefer to read it instead of just skipping it.

I was cracking up the other day at your "I like so and so" and "he is good" posts. I understand wanting to say what you got to say but being succinct doesn't mean you can't get your ideas across effectively. I thought your 4:00 post was perfect. To the point and shortened.

I'm just another guy on another computer so it really doesn't matter, just giving you my two cents bro.

Cheers :)

Marcus , that's not what rob meant. he was talking about b graham and how he blew past baluga at the senior bowl. he was talking about graham as a player

I agree with Sand. Jason's time as a full time starter is over and he's unwilling to take a lesser role it seems so the team is better off in the long run developing another player. Isn't it about time to see if Quentin Moses can play? Crap, the guy's been collecting cheques for 3-4 years. enough developing already.

MarkInToronto:

stuck at work today, so I'm following it on Guardian U.K.'s minute-by-minute blog---snarky good fun, if you've never tried it---i follow it even when I'm watching match.

I support Chelski & Barca, but after surviving first half ystrdy, Rooney & Co, sure looked awesome, no? I'm convinced Rooney could be stellar at american football, tho I don't know all his meaurables---fast as hell & powerful is hard to ignore.

I'm surprised at the number of fans who want to say goodbye to JT. Pennington might not be back. Porter is gone. Holliday was jettisoned before last year.

We have lost a number of good character leaders in the locker room (although I hesitate to put Porter in that category, he was certainly a leader on the team). Bringing JT back (under the right conditions) should be a no-brainer in my opinion for that steadying influence alone. Plus, the fact we have these young OLBs on the team and probably will draft a few more should increase our need for JT, not lesson it. The things younger players can pick up from him in a year is unquantifiable IMO.

Sand in shoes i have made those points for two days now no one will listen.... NO JT is better for dolphins future. JT will be a progress stopper this season and thats not what the big three are about.....

(under the right conditions) = If he is willing to be platooned. I agree he is no longer a full time starter. He needs to be on board with the way the coaches want to use him.

FOR THOSE OF YOU WHO DID NOT READ MANDOS POST YESTERDAY ABOUT JT I WILL REMIND YOU.... HE SAID HE WANTS TO START AND PLAY EVERY DOWN???? THERE IS NO WAY IN H E L L YOU GUYS THINK THAT IS A GOOD IDEA....... GET REAL AND PLEASE PULL YOUR HEADS OUT OF YOUR RECTUMS.............

value over need! value over need!

but good for us is we need a lot.

Hartline will have at least 60 catches next year bank on it.

Mark , carlona is on a winning streak. it looks like the bruins will have on of the top 2 picks in the nhl draft, Tyler Sequin , taylor hall or cam fowler. all of them are suppossed to be studs. again Thanks !!! . LOL

finfan,


Hartline runs a 4.5-40. I'm a big fan of his. My point is and was, his ability for getting open in the 20-25 yard range is seemingly uncanny, while his breakaway speed isn't. He is going to be a great #-2 receiver.

Sand in Shoes and Mark In Toronto - So as a fan you want les talented players on the team your root for? Are you serious? If you don't take age into consideration and had no clue how old the players were, you would take Charlie Anderson, Erik Walden and Quentin Moses over the much more talented Jason Taylor?

Very interesting! I am less talented then any player on the Dolphins roster, but should they sign me up and play me cause I am younger than JT

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