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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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eric dolfan,

I hate to window shop... it kills me to look at things I can't.

Prediction 1 Wilfork will be a Fin of Belly-Chucks dead body...Hmmm, from photo gate to Fin Gate... a real whodunnit!

Prediction 2 Fins won't sign 3 high priced FA's. As many have stated, the cap will come back...and come back wuf a vengeance someday for teams that grossly overspend now.

Getting any one of Bolden, Bryant, McClain, Graham or Jones is all doable and not even a big dream so take your pick.

My talent lotto ticket says: Brandon Graham!


I'm working.

po, what up w/fas ?

LOL cuban buzzes in 1st for 400!!!

With a name like that I bet the G man had a HUGE problem when Richard Geer had that whole incident / rumor going around a whil back eh?


what do you do captain Ace ?


Mighty hefty salary anchor that special teamer Jason Allen is carrying, eh bud? He has to have a major price reduction target on his back at least unless they clip him altogether.

JP is finding out, this regime doesn't spare the rod and will have more cash to spoil accordingly.


I'd love to be presented with the issue of McClain or Bryant...there doesn't seem to be a wrong answer. However, recievers typically take longer to develop and Bryant's character could be a burden. McClain on the other hand, has mastered the 3-4 system in every facet and punishes people on contact. If hes available, no matter what, we gotta get him. Then sign Zach Thomas so he can rightfully retire as a phin.

Aloco, Build meatball subs at Subway isn't paying anyone's unemployment my friend....JK:)

Captain Ace,

If that is true and the Phins do a deal, then whats your plan for all the Fins that matter in the secondary? How would you lay out the positional chart?


Captain of my boat.Deep sea fishing.In the Keys.



I thought you were in Australia? Was I mistaken? Is it only bigalfy?



Fell in the correction but the sky is the limit now. LOL

Have a good position in TYH now cause of the Correction;@ $118


Capt. Ace, You my friend are the man......Where do you launch from, I come down to Miami 2 or 3 times a year and usually charter a boat from Holiday Isle or Whale Harbor....Where are you located????


It will be interesting to see what they do with him.


I'm up for adoption.



Agree 1000%... about Zack Thomas only. He has been my favorite Fin ever. Class act and hard working guy. He has been the biggest under height, under weight, under speed and Underdog story the Fins have ever had in my opinion.

The guy gave his heart and soul to the Fins as a top notch LB for a long time. Now he has to live with all the ramifications of that career choice. I wish him all the best, I hope he doesn't check out too early from the planet. I would love to see him in the HoF but, that may be asking too much.

Hell, even his brain is going to concussion research to help future players. Great human being.


Defense wins championships.Use the draft and free agency for everything else.It would be great to have a defense like the RAVENS.
Cheers Rob,

Luv Zach, Do it; only right.

I agree crowder sucks.

Cap'n Ace,

If BP & Co stay on task and don't retire or jump ship, then I think the W's along with the Def will come.

I predict high seas for the rest of the AFC East me matey! Yar!



Enter the Dragon! Classic Black Belt action. =)


Thank You Rob.

Lets chat about the CBA.


At the risk of getting other's sick from repetition I will simply put the initials of the person on Off (CJS) and the person on Def (B.G.) that I would prefer to your Dez and McClain choices.

I agree that WR's typically take a 2-3 years to develop into top flight weapons. With Dez'z bagage coupled with BP not liking diva's or drafting WR early I would say that he is a long shot.

BP loves him some GOOD LB's. Can you please send any links that have lots of footage of McClain destroying people with his heft and speed? The one's I find are just not that.

Thanks and cheers,

Cap'n Ace,

Not much to say but doom and gloom from what I have read and know. Sounds like both sides gearing up for this uncapped year to happen and then even a potential lockout in 2011. ESPN Insider magazine Feb 22 edition has a great article on pg 46.

They even mention a scenario where since the DirecTv deal is going to give a billion dollars to the NFL in 2011 whether the games get played or not that owners might make more pure profit without the games than with them.

The article points a picture of how even if a workstoppage occurs it shouldn't last too long as the players really do want to play and most don;t have the money to stay home during a long stoppage. Careers are only so long and age marches on which is not in a players favor.


*paints typo

Have a good night everyone.Peace out.

Cheers, Cap'n Ace! You too.

Look for the owners to win.......again....That's how the fat-cats operate my friend....

Kiper is PAID, I repeat PAID to give opinions. Who pays him? Not the teams he comments on, but the f___ing media!!!! He is just another columnist for the media. Why does anyone give a f__k what he thinks. I firmly believe the person who invented the word "fan" was a genius. Short for "fanatic". A "fan" doesn't think rationally, he just craves for anything a "print salesman" (e.g. columnist) says. Who gives a f__k what Kiper says?! If he was a good analyst, an NFL team would have hired him long ago at any price. Wake the f__k up, "fans" !!!!

I am having questions about Rolando McClain. The kid looks pretty good in coverage, but it seems that he needs help to tackle running backs. He can't hit them hard and make them end up in the floor. It seems that either he holds on to them until the referee blows the whistle or he just hugs tight into them until he gets help in gang tackles. Am I just imagining? Am I Blind? OR do you guys see the same thing?

Actually cuban, the bosses should win most battles with employees. They own whatever it is and should make the policies.

If it ever becomes cruel, inhumane, with terrible conditions etc than it's fair for the unions to regulate.

I have felt a rookie wage salary cap has been long overdue. The NFLPA and it's sharp shooter agents had finagled too much power. As long as there is a decently high floor minimum per team and vets got more of the pie as opposed to unproven rookies I would say a similar style of CBA would be fine for both. The NFL doesn't open its books too often but the economy hit had to terrorize at least a few owners.

The 59.5% of league revenues going to player salaries is the highest of all major sports.
NBA 57%
NHL 56.7%
MLB 52%



Thanks for looking at the video footage of McClain with your own eyes instead of just listening to some drone on about his height/weight/speed.

You are NOT wrong and your own eyes are NOT deceiving you.

He does not smash people or destroy ballcarriers. In fact he actually lets me down for a guy of his size and weight personally.

Good post Sergio!



Well you use fan in your title so you fanatically on the right ship as Fins supporter...Goood job!

As for Kiper, McShay, Ex-athletes now as MC's, anyone infront of the camera at ESPN, ABC, FOX, NBC along WITH all the experts, GM's, long time scouts, Some Owners, etc... they are just each one single voice or opinion. Nothing more, nothing less. Give him the due of he's been doing it a really long time and you can tell by the way he recalls names he studies a lot anyways. No harm in that.

I sure hope no one is taking a Kiper Only view on this board or worse yet someone involved with the Fins.


(that used to be a marathon post for me...there's hope)

Short arms plus great motor - are they talking about Matt Roth or Graham?

Graham @ 12? NO thanks.

Fin Fan Mike,

So are you on the McClain or bust wagon @ #12?

If not, who do you like?


Los lobos is right Brady Quinn Sucks!!! How many Miami fans were crying about this loser for years. He sucks!

ROb, you would have Morgan put on 20 lbs and take away some of that great athleticism he has? Just wondering if you would do the same to Demarcus Ware, jason Taylor in his prime, or Shawne MErriman before his injury. Dude, your asleep on this issue, obviously. Morgan is the eptiome of an excellent edge rusher with freakish athleticism. If anything, he needs to drop about 5 lbs to improve his motor.

The main reason why I think a move to OLB would be the best move for him is because he tends to slow down at the end of games which makes one think that he is carrying a bit too much weight and needs to work on his cardio and core strength some more. Bulking him up would make him useless.

For those who believe in the "best player available" mantra, taking Brandon Graham at 12 would be almost as bad as taking Ted Ginn Jr's family at 9.

sidenote. Brandon Graham will be a better player in the NFL than Ginn though


Thank you. Good post Aloco

Mark in Toronto,

You win! Morgan is YOUR guy. Go get him some Slim Fast or at least let Valerie Bertinelli work with him to take off all those unwanted pounds.

For God sakes man, rev his motor up for the whole 4 quarters...you will be paying him #12 money in your draft universe for Pete's sake!

That is not the knock on Graham. He is at probably at home now working out on his Stair Master and reading the Art of War! LOL

I kid, I kid...

Seriously though, Morgan is now your best OLB choice... duly noted.


Uh oh, the imPosters are at play.

No cheers, 8(

Good post Carlito and ALoco.


Imposter or not, Derrick Morgan has been my #1 OLB going back to the fall. But wanting to play OLB will be up to him. If he shows up at 280 lbs, then it's obvious he wants no part of playing OLB although with his athleticism, I have no idea why he wouldn't want to play in the extra space seeing at how much money Bill Parcells made Demarcus Ware.

Nothing new Rob...

M in T is the real deal though...

Here are my ranks of guys in order of who I think would be the best Dolphins pick based on best player available and needs at the #12 pick. (please note: being realistic, I don't actually want all of these guys listed)

1. Rolando McClain
2 Dan Williams
3. Earl Thomas
4. Derrick Morgan
5. Sergio Kindle
6. Dez Bryant
7. Cj Cpiller

Armando, what do you think of the turn around by the Cowboys concerning Austin? First Jones says a couple days ago...we're going to keep Austin, even if we have to tag him and we will work hard on getting him a long term deal, now his son says...the Cowboys aren't going to tag him and it may be awhile before we can talk about a long term deal. This is the same Austin that Parcells tried to trade for with the cowboys two years ago...and the same Austin that Parcells found while he was with the Cowboys. The same Austin that acquired over 1300 yds 11 tds last season and is 25 years old. There a rumor that the Cowboys really need a LT in this draft and they know they aren't going to get one at 27...so do we see the start of a trade here? The Dolphins get their receiver and the cowboys move up to 12 to get their LT.


Seen a few Mock drafts with us taking Sergio Kindle.

I have no thoughts on this though;whats new.

Get McClain or trade down.

Carlito, I see it pretty much the same as you although I would probably slide Weatherspoon right alongside McClain. I honestly don't see how McClain is appreciably better than 'Spoon.

I would also slide Kindle right out of that list.

I also like Morgan a lot, would put him ahead of Thomas, but not by much.

But overall, without the additions of any impact free agency, the Dolphins must address ILB, NT in the first due to the dearth of talent in those two positions in this draft.

You might get an OLB in the 2nd round just as good as the one picked in the first. However the secondary ILBs and NTs are not rated anywhere nearly as high as 'Spoon, McClain, and D Williams.

We might get Kindle in the 2nd though. Williams/McClain/Weatherspoon and Kindle 1-2 would make a nice draft.

If McClain is there at 12 we have to take him, too good to pass up, get wr and olb in next few rds. after Ginn I would be reluctant to take another wr with your first pick unless he is a surefire hit and dez has missed too much time for my liking.

Pete, i do not make that trade because the Dolphins would not get either of

D. Williams
Earl Thomas

and that would not be good news.


I can sleep plenty when I'm dead. Always been a mantra of mine.

I don't eat healthy enough as is the case with most folks.

earlier post of the other info.

What do you do? What do you eat? The best thing you could tell me is what do you think of Brandom Graham, Rolando McClain or any pick you think is worthy @#12?


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