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Needed help at LG? Don't sleep on Michael Iupati

All the so-called experts as well as fans -- me included -- have for several months told you what the Dolphins' needs are without, you know, actually hearing it from the Dolphins. Those are among the closely guarded secrets of Team Big Tuna.

Well, the needs you heard about are still accurate. They're just incomplete.

The Dolphins can definitely use an OLB, a NT, WR, FS out of this draft.

But did you know LG should be on the list, too?

And perhaps even in the first round.


Don't be because the Dolphins have been, and continue to do much legwork on Idaho guard Michael Iupati, a 6-5, 331-pound behemoth that truly impressed on tape and continued to impress the Dolphins during the Senior Bowl week and in the game.

The Dolphins were so impressed they brought Iupati to town on March 15 and 16 for a visit. The Dolphins were the first team Iupati visited so they were obviously the first to recognize his potential worth. But they haven't been the last.

Iupati, who is expected to be available when Miami picks at No. 12 in the first round, has been a busy man lately, traveling to several other teams. The interest in him is substantial.

By the way, if the Dolphins go with an interior offensive lineman in the first round, it would almost have to be Iupati, as there isn't another player at the position that offers value so high. Iupati is the only one that does while Ole Miss guard John Jerry rates slightly lower.

So why would Miami seriously consider Iupati at that spot?

Well, have you heard, they have interior offensive line issues. Still. The club is expecting to trade left guard Justin Smiley at some point this offseason. That creates a void at the position. I suppose Nate Garner, who started four games at the spot last year, could be a candidate to fill the void, but who else will compete for the job?

Donald Thomas and recently acquired Richie Incognito are both right guards. That's their spot. That's where they are clearly best suited. Moving either to left guard is asking them to play out of position.

So the Dolphins need LG help assuming Smiley goes as planned.

Don't be surprised if Michael Iupati is that help. Don't be surprised if the Dolphins pick him in the first round.

[UPDATE: The National Football Post rates Iupati the No. 8 best prospect in the draft while ESPN.com's Scouts Inc. has rated at No. 14. So obviously, folks are thinking No. 12 is around the place he should be selected at this stage.] 


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im not saying we had a good defense my friend. but our offense wasnt much better, zero playmakers

Oakland hasn't made the playoffs in like forever.....with the exception of their appearance in the Super Bowl a few years ago....

And btw billbill,

I just looked at FIVE mock drafts and NONE of them had Spiller going before 12. Obviously you know something they don't.

i just looked at 3 mocks, 2 had him going before 12. one had bills even taking him, which would be stupid

We had injuries to our starting QB and starting RB. I guess that doesn't count?

I happen to think we LACK playmakers on offence but surely you would agree our defence was our achilles last year and needs to be upgraded this off-season?

yes i agree, we need alot of defense. but also playmakers on offense, the wildcat is all but dead.

Well the part about the Bills taking Spiller we agree on....that would be stupid. But they make a lot of stupid picks.

its got to be the best available player at 12, regardless of need. So id say D. Morgan if available, or believe it or not Dez Bryant. Hes the best in the class, a potential top 5 pick and a position of need. Id like S Kindle but I think the trifectas size requirements might keep him out of the discussion. Cam Thomas or Terrence Cody in the second if he slides

seen spiller as high as 6 to seattle on nfl.com latest mock

Well I think I would agree with you on the Wildcat too, billbill.

But you just know this regime isn't going to go out and get the playmakers we need on offence. It's not their style. I only hope that Bryant is still there at 12, not because I think they are going to pick him but so we can see what it might have been had we picked him. I've changed my mind on this guy. I think if he keeps his head on straight he's going to be a star.

Two Words...


Scratch that, we lost 4 OLBs! Ayodele,Porter,Roth, and presumably Taylor. And we signed ONE REPLACEMENT! Jeez I hope no one gets hurt or I guess our third round OLB pick is going to get thrown to the wolves. I'm sorry, I've been a huge supporter of the trifecta but I don't even see a plan in place at this point. Draft is in a few weeks so I guess we're HOPING to fill all of our needs there. Great plan!

oh no doubt on dez, if he can grow up he will be a top 5 wr. but parcells wont draft him, if hes there at 12 maybe we can deal down

nfl.com latest mock is a nightmare to us fin fans. has miami taking kindle, then patriots getting odrick and jets getting dez

This would not be the first time Miami has worked so hard at getting a LT LG Combo that was formidable.... Richmond Webb And Kieth Simms were taken #1 & #2 in the 1990 draft by Miami... Great choices and they were awesome in their days here in Miami. At the time everyone was pissed that Miami took linemen #1-#2 in the Draft, later we knew it was a smart move by Shula. Dan Marino did as well as he did because of those guys and guys like... C Dwight Stephenson, G Roy Foster and C Jeff Uhlenhake... so far I have been a bit more impressed with Shula's work on the line... His choices were a little better and they tended to to stay put longer, particularly on the left side and center.

NY Scott,

Roth was lost last year, so let's not count him. The other two guys aren't big losses. We will add one or two in the draft and Taylor will still be there as a fall back. It's really not that bad. We've got this huge upgrade from Ayodele to Dansby and we're going to get some new young blood....plus Wake is coming. Cheer up!!

Mock Draft

1) Bradford
2) Suh
3) G. McCoy
4) Okung
5) Bulaga
6) Spiller
7) Haden
8) A. Davis
9) Clausen
10) D. Morgan
11) McClain
12) BERRY !!!

Could happen ??

personally i dont think wake is an every down guy.

Would it surprise me? No,for several reasons. Mando already mentioned two of them, Smiley and Incognito. But the Smiley move is a dead giveaway.

The 2009 O line was good but not great. And make no mistake, that's what they want.

The Smiley decision was not a good one. We had too many other holes without creating another.


I'm not sold on Kindle yet. Maybe I'll warm up to him closer to the draft. I agree he has some appeal.

Odrick I'm not worried about I can't see Bryant falling all the way to the Jets. I'm sure somebody will take him before he gets to 29. He's just too talented.....Hell, I'd even like it if we traded back into the first to get him before the Jets picked. I'm guessing if he's still there when Dallas picks they take him.

Our offensive line will be incredible if they draft that guy. Then we can sit and watch Henne stand in the backfield wondering why none of his WRs are getting open down field at which point he can dump the ball to Fasan,,,,,,woops that's right, he forgot how to catch,,dump the ball to a RB so we can get 4 yards at a time and go on one of our famous 16 play drives. We will kick a FG because none of our WRs can go up and fight for loose balls in the endzone and then we will watch as the other team throws all the way down the field against our backup caliber defense that is filled with kids. It will take them 5 plays and they will score a TD on a throw straight up the middle. Look, I don't mind that they're rebuilding but at least let us in on the plan! You know, the people purchasing all of the tickets and merchandise that in turn keeps the players,coaches, and management getting payed. Yes, us, the fans, Can we get a glimpse of the master plan here? Is it a 5 year, 6 year, 7 year? How long do we have to wait? Are you building strictly through the draft because you don't seem to want to sign any veteran free agents unless another team no longer wants them and you can sign them for a bag of balls! I'm just not getting it. This is supposed to be the year rebuilding teams make a splash in free agency. This is the year that you sprinkle in veteran free agents to play along side your talented young nucleus. WTF is going on?


Could happen but I don't see Claussen going to Buffalo at 9. They've been burned to many times at QB, I don't think they will take another one that high. I'm just not sure what Buffalo or Denver will do. I could see Bryant going to Denver at 11, especially if they move Marshall.

You may be onto something here! Tuna loves to draft linemen with his first pick (O or D). He believes that they are the only ones worthy of the pick and the best value. Then, he goes LB/Secondary or RB. He's never been big on WR, prefering to pick them up in later rounds or go Undrafted. Next, he fills out with proven veterans with some gas left that are available in June. He's always been about keeping salary cap low until you prove yourself on the field (carrot stick). Even then, you better perform or you're history. He wants "his guys" not other's leftovers and he won't stop till he gets what he wants. 5)

incredible? no have one pro bowler. a guard who started 4 games. overpaid carey. injury prone center.

To me, KC, Cleveland, Buffalo, and even Jacksonville hold the key to Berry dropping...


Good post at 5:14pm. It's pretty maddening....I'm not excited about watching an OL protect a QB all day while our defence is getting beaten but more talented offences.

Anyways, I'm not going to over-react to this news. I just think it's their way of collecting information on this guy. I don't think by any means this is the guy we're drafting.

no way clev or buffalo takes him


I agree. I think Cleveland and KC look long and hard at Berry. In the end KC has other needs and figures that's too high for a S and the Browns could CB. Jacksonville as you said, is a strong possibility too.....

Craig I'm losing it man! If you know my posts you know that I'm normally pretty positive about the team and it's direction but I'm starting to get really nervous here. Didn't need to hear we might be drafting OL 12th overall. I seriously think that will put us back to where we were last year. And I counte Roth as this year because it's been within a year that it happened and they didn't replace him. I seriously hope JT stays at this point.

Yeah, I sense your anxiety NYScott. I just think Armando is having fun with this. Sure the guy visited ith the Dolphins but so will 30-40 other guys. I just think he's playing up the fact that he's an OL and we know these guys like good OL.

I will be very disappointed if this is our pick. When we all agreed their needs this off-season needed to be NT, OLB, WR, ILB and TE and FS, nowhere did we mention OL. Now all of a sudden there's a thought of taking one at 12 and everyone is cool with that. It's obvious a lof of these guys are drinking the Kool-Aid.

NYScott, All teams will bring in lots of different guys from different positions, they would be negligent if they didn't AND they would tip their hand on what they are thinking..Relax and don't concentate on one guy they bought in...


How surprised and or disappointed would you be if they take this guy at 12? YOu'd have to admit it would through our draft off completely. You could say goodbye to picking a TE in the second round.

Craig M, oh I would be very disappointed, by a pick such as this, I don't think it happens though

A report on Yahoo that Ronnie Brown's blood alcohol level was nearly twice the legal limit in Georgia. Not good!!

Better to drink and blog than drink and drive.


Ronnie is a good guy he made a mistake. A light night out or whatever. If he was one of these fake thug, pac man jones types I would be worried. It's not going to be an ongoign problem with him.

I agree NJ. Just wondering if he's going to end up getting suspension for this. We all know how Goodell doesn't like this kind of stuff.

Teams like Detroit have the chronic problem of aquiring too many wide outs every yr. We have the opposite problem were we get lineman every yr! I know we were injured there, but there is supreme talent to miss out on this draft. This guy may be 8th overall but some players will be impact pro bowl players for yrs and drafting this LG could prevent us from getting them.

to be or not to BE ........THE FINS WILL KICK BUTT NEXT SEASON .


Yes Goddell is pretty good with hammering players which I am in total agreement with. Players act like they are above the law and they aren't. They are creating themselves a new persona with their money. Some of these guys are country dumb, humble upbringing kids and get money and think they are a rap star or something.


LMAO @ PO , I don't know bro, I went back and read ur meltdown again... Maybe drinking n driving is a better choice for u!!!


mama maria is going to cook duck and remember papa mario is out on the field planting peans .

Not as much fun though....

I told you so.

I actually would like Iupati with that pick. That pick may be able to sure up the whole offensive line depending upon how Incognito and Thomas do at right guard. Then, Nate Garner, who is very versatile, can back up Iupati, providing some much needed depth on the line. Remember, these guys get injured a lot. They are in the trenches. That being said, the Dolphins have so many holes and there are so many talented players out there, that this would only be one of many logical picks.


You remember Reben Brown LG for Buffalo was taken
I believe at the 8th pick in first round (1995)--8 time pro bowler? But Armando, Lupati is good for smoke screen or to measure against another LG that we want. The only BPA you will see by the
Dolphins is Defensive BPA when they pick in the 1st or 2nd round. I will bet they take D. Williams, Earl Theomas or OLB in the 1st round.
Only way they don't, if they want more draft choices in the draft.

Lupati definitley Italian

Miami needs a big time WR, either we pick Bryant at 12 or trade for Marshall... I wonder if the front office forgot that Miami could not make a play of 15 yards or more last year. Let's not forget, everything is ridding on Mr Henne, if he doesn't work out, Miami is back to where they were the last 12 years... Henne needs a big time WR to help him blossom into a good/great QB..

Dolphins84, almost everyone on this blog or who follows the Fins KNOWS that neither one of those is gonna happen, need to be realistic here

Armando Salguero MAN! you are ON to something here. No chance this guy is around in round 2?

Dont see OG at 12. This guy holds every play Wecan get someone just with the same qualities later in the draft We need play makers chunk yardage bryant, spiller, etc.

Armando, pot stirring at its finest. The spoon is sharper than sword.


He's good but we don't need him at 12. Go defense 1st rd. John Jerry (Ole Miss) 4th rd would be a great pick. Rightside trained. Smarts to learn the leftside. 4 year player and we know BP likes that.

MphsDolfan, agreed, we don't need to be playing with OG with pick 12...much later after round 4 is fine with me

This pick would surprise me more than Dez Bryant, and that says alot

Another person I would like to see picked 6th rd if on the board is Brandon Lang (Troy). 6'4 265 DE/OLB. Small school kid with smarts.

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