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Jason LaCanfora: Kaepernick is Miami's pick

This morning on my radio show, Armando and the Amigo, NFL Network insider Jason LaCanfora was on for his usual Thursday morning segment and I asked him what his best information says the Dolphins are going to do with their 15th overall selection in the first round this evening.

He said the Dolphins are going to pick Nevada QB Colin Kaepernick.

And now that my chin is off the floor, I am writing this post. Look, I like Kaepernick. I know the Dolphins really like Kaepernick.

But in the first round?

At No. 15?

I have one word for that: Reeeeeeeeeeaaaaaaaaaaaaaccccccccchhhhhhhh!

If the Dolphins love Kaepernick, they should try to trade down and get him in the second round -- where he is rightly rated, in my opinion. If the Dolphins love Kaepernick, they should understand they'll be waiting a year or so before he is viable as a winning QB in the NFL. If the Dolphins love Kaepernick to the point of having to pick him at No. 15, I would say they missed the opportunity to address equally pressing needs with players that will be NFL-ready sooner.

Personally, I would go with Andy Dalton before I pick Colin Kaepernick. I think Dalton will be the better NFL quarterback. And if nothing moves with trades, I take Mike Pouncey and that's that. That's my prediction, by the way -- made that call Monday.

But why is Kaepernick nonetheless viable?

Because Kaepernick is a QB. And although teams know the rules about drafting a quarterback, they often violate those rules because, well, they're reaching for a quarterback.

I hope the Dolphins can resist the urge to go crazy and do something really unorthodox. I hope they resist the urge to bow to fan or any other kind of pressure.

And there is pressure.

The angry throng of fans that jump on radio call-in shows and blog sites to advocate, indeed, even demand the Dolphins select a quarterback in the coming draft’s first round. But they are actually insisting Miami do something more far-reaching than get a player to be the face of the franchise.

Anyone wanting the Dolphins to draft a first-round quarterback for the first time since Dan Marino is also:

A -- Putting faith in a rookie quarterback helping the team when history suggests most will not.

B -- Practically assuring Chad Henne will be the 2011 starter because no rookie will be handed the job immediately and none of this draft’s signal-callers are complete enough to dislodge a veteran who already enjoys a head start with the offense – particularly because players are locked out and unable to contact coaches.

C -- Asking Dolphins coach Tony Sparano and general manager Jeff Ireland to ignore their personal concerns about job security.

That’s why there are clues floating around the Dolphins suggesting the team will not pick a quarterback in the first round when the draft begins tonight.

Yes, this flies in the face of logic.

The NFL is a quarterback-driven league. Many believe the Dolphins need a quarterback. I share that belief. And despite their public embrace of Henne, the Dolphins know they need someone they can trust at the position.

But the circumstances prevent it. Sorry.

Historical analysis and current events could conspire to push the Dolphins in another direction. And that’s before desperation kicks in. (Desperation in this case is defined as the urgent need to win immediately, particularly at home, to avoid heads rolling.)

If you’re one of those fans mentioned above, kindly stop yelling at me now. Allow some logic to mingle with what is always an emotional argument.

The Dolphins, you see, need the right quarterback more than they need a quarterback. And there is no expert, no personnel man, no NFL general manager who can guarantee anyone the Dolphins pick in the first round will be right.

Not in this draft. And not that low in this draft.

Consider that 46 quarterbacks were drafted in the draft’s first round the past 20 seasons, from 1991 to 2010. Those folks wanting that immediate talent bump from that new QB should digest the fact only 20 of those 46 QBs started even half of their team’s games as rookies.

Nope, drafting a QB in the first round does not guarantee an immediate starter. It doesn’t even guarantee a good player has joined the roster.

 Among that list of 46 first-round quarterbacks, 25 became bitter, unmitigated failures over their careers. In my country, we call them busts.

Only 18 of those first-round quarterbacks became successful and worthy of the picks invested on them. But even from that grand group, Chad Pennington, Daunte Culpepper, Carson Palmer, Phillip Rivers, Michael Vick, Donovan McNabb, Aaron Rodgers, and Steve McNair did not start as rookies and some didn’t even start until after their second season.

“The test case for this is Aaron Rodgers,” said ESPN’s Mel Kiper. “That’s the way you should develop a quarterback. What would have happened if he had gone to the Redskins? I don’t think he’d have been Aaron Rodgers right now. He probably would have been kicked to the curb.

“But he developed. He changed his whole delivery, his whole mechanics of throwing the football. Now he’s a potential Hall of Famer and has a Super Bowl ring. There you go.” 

It’s too early to tell which direction the three remaining first-rounders on the list of 46 will go just as it’s impossible to know who among this year’s quarterback class will succeed.

“I like the players that are in this draft,” Dolphins general manager Jeff Ireland said of the incoming quarterback class. “I think there’s good depth there. I think you can find a good player. I don’t have a crystal ball about what kind of players they’re going to be in this league. There are lot of things that go into that, but I think it’s a good depth group. I think there’s starters to be had.”

Notice he didn’t say “immediate starters.” That’s important to the Dolphins and should be important to fans.

That contingent of fans wanting a new quarterback right away should probably be looking toward free agency or a trade because, barring a quick resolution to the league’s labor troubles, rookies will handcuffed.

Henne already knows the Dolphins new offense. He spent weeks with new offensive coordinator Brian Daboll learning the system before the lockout happened.

A rookie won’t be allowed to work on the field with a Miami coach or even talk to a coach on the phone until the lockout ends. That means the incoming rookie quarterback will be competing for the starting job with one arm – his passing arm – tied behind his back.

Perhaps that doesn’t bother the fan with a long view of Miami’s problems. That person will be a fan a decade from now, assuming the Dolphins actually win a home game between now and then.

But what about the Miami braintrust?

The men actually making the decision whether to pick a quarterback in the first round have no guarantee they’ll be here next year, much less a decade from now. The only security they have is success – now.

So do they gamble that success on a player who might not play for a season? Or do they pick a player that is more likely to immediately start and help the team and their cause right away?

Ireland is on record saying he’ll take a long view of things rather than concern himself with something so trivial as his job status.

It’ll be interesting to see if that’s true when the Dolphins are on the clock in the first round and Miami’s GM is weighing that long-range project QB we’ll see in 2012 or that running back, lineman or outside lineabaker (Purdue's Ryan Kerrigan) who will start right away.

The angry throng is waiting for the decision.

[NOTE: I promised I'll be updating this blog several times today. I mean it! So continue to come back and remember there is a live blog of the draft tonight.  Also, follow me on twitter.]


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Armando...Do you ever read your blog? We went over this last night? I know you can't be everywhere all of the time...But c'mon.

This is a joke. Kaepernick @ 15???? Why would we do this? Talk about a reach. Why not draft all Montana Grizzly players as Dying Breed suggested I would do. At least we would find some special teams players...This is that ridiculous. Land your spaceship Jason. And quit spewing jibber jabber over the national air waves because you think you have some inside information....

IMO Kaep would be a great selection. I vision him running the wildcat and doing what Pat White was drafted to do. Kaep has a strong arm and can make the throws.Keep Ronnie Brown and let him and Kaep do thier thing.

We can't possibly be that stupid. I refuse to believe it.

NOT!! Here's our best bet. Grab Ingram RB with 15 (solid NFL style, E. Smith clone), and hope Locker is available in the 3rd. Locker looks like a cross between Philip RIvers and McNabb. Yes he needs training, but the highest upside minus risk in the draft. Kaeprnick isn't impressive at all - some nice qualities, but not a game changer. If he's the only thing available round 4. then maybe.


I'm still under the impression that our win now QB will come from FA or trade. Then if our rookie QB doesn't show signs of awesomeness (or we don't have one) then we draft our franchise guy within the next 2 years. I'm afriad this year is just just franchise QB year.

Damn hate typos... "just NOT franchise QB year".

Here is my mock draft. The Dolphins will have a chance to move up to #6 to Cleveland's spot to get Blaine Gabbert.

1. Dareus, Marcell
2. Fairley, Nick
3. Newton, Cam
4. Green, A.J.
5. Peterson, Patrick
6. Miller, Von
7. Gabbert, Blaine
8. Quinn, Robert
9. Smith, Tyron
10. Amukamara, Prince
11. Jones, Julio
12. Bowers, Da'Quan
13. Solder, Nate
14. Smith, Aldon
15. Mallett, Ryan
16. Watt, J.J.
17. Ingram, Mark
18. Jordan, Cameron
19. Pouncey, Mike
20. Liuget, Corey
21. Clayborn, Adrian
22. Castonzo, Anthony
23. Heyward, Cameron
24. Ayers, Akeem
25. Sherrod, Derek
26. Liuget, Corey
27. Carimi, Gabe
28. Locker, Jake
29. Smith, Jimmy
30. Smith, Torrey
31. Williams, Aaron
32. Houston, Justin

Well, with the lockout lifted, are players available for trades? Does anyone know how this is going to work?

If so, I'd try to dump guys like Merling, Bell & Crowder. Youth replacements are already in place anyway(Jones, Odrick & Edds). So if it's allowed, I'd do it if they can help the team maneuver a bit.

If we make this pick and he's anything less than a spectacular starter we had better see heads roll.

Kaepernick is a 2nd rounder. Period.

thats a joke no way they pick that kid who ran a pistol offense. if anything trade back ge that 2nd round and get mallet and mikel laushure

Gabbert isn't worth #6, or a sell-all-picks draft. Sell players for a second round pick, or trade #15 for later 1st, and a second. MUCH better value 2-3 this year. For ONCE I agree with the trade down philosophy. JUST this once though.

Whatever! We also have been projected to trade up with the Redskins to draft Mallett. Lets not forget what history has been showing. Second round QB's don't pan out well in the NFL. The object of picking a good QB in the first round (if he has first round talent) is to help the team in the future. We all have seen the reports about how a team needs a great QB to be successful and we all believe Henne MAY not be the guy. Time to move toward the future with getting the QB in the first round this year. NO MORE WAITING. How ridiculous was it to hear we picked Henne because he was cheaper! Dan Marino didn't play until halfway through his rookie season. No one says a QB picked in the first round has to play the in first game of the year, but this guy can push Henne. Maybe the Dolphins can get lucky enough and have the Brees/Rivers Chargers dilemma. What a good problem that would be. The whole point is to not wait any longer to get the franchise QB. Now is the time. Cant wait to put this topic to bed tonight!
Go Dolphins!
Get Mallett!

Not a chance....Neither Kaepernick or Dalton are going in the first round... Do some of these guys step back and think about things logically or do they just talk? I am not buying it Jason...

Armando are you aware that picking a qb in the 2nd round has worse results , then in qb's pick in the first rd. Since 1991 there have been 2 qb,s pick in the 2nd rd that have been
successful-- that would be brett favre and drew brees. Look it up

Mike Mayock has Miami taking Pouncey at 15. I can see that. He'll play & is less risk than Ingram or any QB. I still think Miami can slide down to take Pouncey, 15 is a little high.

I would still love to see this regime go out on a limb and take Mallet in the 1st. Take a chance! If it bombs, I won't hold it against you. You took a chance to give this team what it really needs. A dynamic passer!

Hell, in the end, it really doesn't matter. I'll be ok with an OLB at 15! If that's where value is, take a D player. We need players & playmakers. I don't care what position they play.

I think all this is a smoke screen Even Mallett. Miami is trying to boost his stock so someone else takes him, so they have a shot at a different QB. In contrast, the teams giving Mallett a once over only, and dissing him, are more likely to draft him. If I had a guess, I'd say the fins want Gabbert, and are trying tricks to drop him. Mallett would be 2nd round tops, Kaepernick 3rd-4th. All this QB chatter is a lot of hot air. Teams just plain aren't that impressed.

I still dont believe there is any body in this years draft that is going to be a differance make for our dolphins. With out free agency before the draft I strongly feel that none of these rookies will make an immediate impact. So if they go KAEPERNICK what will it really matter.....NONE we still finish the season (lets be reasonable would like to go 12-4, 10-6) But really 8-8. Another down year for us fans.

If they want Kapernick , it dosent mean they pick him at 15 Mando.
In the draft you can wait to turn in your pick whenever.
They simply an wait till around pick 25 and then pull the trigger.
I dont endorse this route

After much thought I don't think the phins will draft a QB high in the draft. They'll probably pick one up later in the draft and sign a vet to compete with henne.
This regime doesn't have time to waste developing a QB. They need starters with their top 2 picks.

If this DUMB move is true, the season is already over. Deangelo williams said that quarterback has a lot to do with what team he will sign with. Brandon marshall and most of the dolphin nation wants RYAN MALLET, he is the next marino!

First pick draft HAS to be a playmaker on offense. Scorer, touchdown producer. QB, RB, some hybrid receiver/back, whatever... Another OL player would just be blocking for nothing. He could clear the entire D Line and still our offense would produce zippo. SCORER!

My guess is a trade with the Seahawks for their first and second rounders, and possibly another trade with the Steelers after that if Pouncey is still on the board.

I think we take Mallett late in the first round.

I don't believe they'll take Kaepernick. To me, this is about forcing another team to trade picks if Kaepernick is still available when the Dolphins pick.

Mallett isn't the guy, folks. I watch a LOT of SEC football, and haven't seen an Arkansas game once where I said "Holy Cow, that guy is special!" Big arm, nothing else. Not the next Marino. The next Jeff George.

NFL Network is reporting Cincinnati is trying to trade out of the fourth spot and will take less value for the pick. Not sure if players can be traded even with the lockout lifted but;

Dolphins could get Cincinnati's first and Carson Palmer and give up their first and next years third. Yeah its crazy but just throwing it out there.

dbmfins,... I'd take that in a heartbeat.

What if we take Mark Ingram at #15 and trade next year's 1st round to take Ryan Mallet in the this year's second round? Just a thought.

Mando, why would the Dolphins not pick a QB in the first rd but pick Pouncey? A QB handles the ball 100% of game time. Pouncey never handles the ball. And the Dolphins can get a servicable guard/center in later rds. Taking a guard over a QB in the 1st rd makes NO sence.

I do think we should trade something for a 2nd rounder. Just not for Mallett. Telling you, he's a likley bust. Everyone gets all gushy over a big arm, but look at the QBs that ARE successful in the NFL, and they weren't the biggest guns in the draft - smart, decision makers, winners, and good (not great) arms.

If La Canfora is correct, it's deja vu all over again. How many ways can this team continue to screw up in the draft?

I agree with JS...our first pick (whether its 15 or something else) MUST be a scorer.
Ross almost fired his HC & GM because we could not score points.
I've been a huge Ingram fan since day one and hate the bloggers here who have been perpetuating all those injury lies about his knee.
Ingram or Mallett is the best use of the #15 pick IMO.

not my actual mock just a sleeper mock without tradeback. Trade Crowder for 4th and 6th (w/ projected position and school)

1st Gabe Carimi LG/RT Wisconsin

3rd Shane Vereen RB California

4th Alex Green RB Hawaii

4th Ross Homan OLB Ohio St

5th Greg Little WR UNC

6th Zane Taylor C Utah

6th Joe Lefeged SS Rutgers

7th T.J. Yates QB UNC

7th Lee Smith TE Marshall

7th Adam Froman QB Louisville

Im as big a Mallet bandwagoner as anyone here. But if you think we'll take Mallet #15 or any other 1st rd spot then youre dreaming. Best case scenario period for taking a qb 1st rd would be a tradeback scenario with the Bears at #29. Because that's only 4 spots before the 2nd rd.

If forced to pick at #15, it looks possible Aldon Smith fall to us. Do I like drafting a defensive player that high when offense looks clear priority? NO!

But its more of a bpa thing because if Aldon Smith is available and we cant trade out of #15. Smith looks like the highest impact positional value for at #15. He would be the biggest bang for the buck.

Jason Canfora should stop polishing his own knob! LOL..........

The bleacher report has a very long bio on Mallett that speaks in depth about his childhood and upbringing. The kid has a ton of determination and is a pure athlete.
The KEY factor in choosing a QB is this: WILL HE BE A RESPECTED LEADER IN THE HUDDLE?
Sounds like many on the Dolphins current roster don't believe Henne is a true leader and IMO, leadership must be high on the list when we pick our next QB

I for one don't wan't Henne under center? Take Mallett or Locker...both big and tough. Maybe taking a QB in the first round will work out because it sure can't be worse than the last 25 years.

All of the og's in this draft are a reach at #15. The draft principles of Ireland's draft system will not allow him to take a OG at #15 IMO.

For the Dolphins to draft Mallet #1, they would have had to see an intangible within him so great during thier time with him. That it overides all of the other truths, rumors, and outright dirtballing of Mallet by the press.

Watch the Gruden clips with Mallett and Cam Newton. Both those guys sound like they'd fail to qualify for "Are You Smarter Than a 3rd Grader". QBs need to be smart, guys.
massfish, I agree with Locker not Mallett. Locker would be a nice pickup in the 3rd, but I think he'll go 2nd. If he flunks out at QB, we'll use him at fullback ;)

Remember all the dirt on Marino pre-draft...he dropped like a rock the day before and lucky for us Shula saw through the smoke and grabbed a legend!

They will not be picking at 15, someone will drop and someone will move up to take them. 15 is the perfect spot to trade out of. Then they can take their QB late in the round 1 of they still want one and can fill a RB or lineman need in rd. 2.

Yes, it makes SO much more sense to take Pouncey who won't help the Dolphins win a single game next year. He'll do an adequate job, but there won't be a single game that you can point to him and say "If we don't draft him we don't win this game". There are guys in the draft that CAN be that guy. Maybe they won't be, but I'd rather take a chance on a guy that could be then one I KNOW won't be.

Did you guys not watch the Parcells draft special where Parcells stated "Accuracy" is a key requirenment in drafting a qb? Guess what, that's locker's weakness.

Guess who trained Ireland to run a football operation? Parcells. If he drafts Locker BP will even call him up and ask, wtf?

I like Kaepernick, he was a good college QB, but I have serious doubts he will be successful in the NFL. I seriously doubt they Phins would pick him at #15. They might take him in second or third round, but no way at #15 with all the other draft needs and good players available. There are at five QB's I would pick ahead of Kaepernick that would be worthy of a #15 pick: Newton, Gabbert, Ponder, Dalton, and Mallet. Just say no to Kaepernick.

I will give my right nut and wear a dress for the next year if we choose Pouncy @ 15...NO WAY WE PICK HIM!

William Hozie,

Thats exactly what Ive been trying to preach to natives concerning "positional value". Still they choose to remain barbaric! LOL..........

IMO...Kaepernick is not a prototypical QB for this era...way too small and does not appear durable.
The days of putting in a Doug Flutie sized QB are over.

La Cafora is the same guy who reported the Steelers would stop at nothing to trade up for Pouncey. I believe he is also the guy that reported the Jim Harbaugh agreed to a deal to coach the Dolphins.....

If I were going to reach it would be for Mallet, Locker or maybe Dalton. Kaep is a project for sure.

Wouldn't drafting Alton Smith be admitting that Koa Misi yet another 2nd rd pick is a bust???

Dyingbreed: Beck was accurate. Wuerffel was accurate. I agree on principle, but I like Locker's upside. Rivers and McNabb did well with the tools they had, and I see a lot of them in Locker. and BTw, Parcells jumped ship on his principles the minute he saw a an athlete QB in White. Bad decision then, but Locker is different than White. Tebow like, with a quciker motion. I'd love a shot at him later rounds. Not 1st round though. Too risky. I say we draft Locker, or Dalton with our 3rd if we stay with our picks.

At 15 the dolphins are taking:

and a few others.

It's beyond me why anyone even reacts to these mockers.

Miami is clearly trying to convince the other teams they have high interest in as many players as possible in order to stimulate a trade down. There is no one single player every team has interest in, so Ireland is doing what he can by showing interest in several popular players in order to get someone to bite.

The downside to us drafting a qb is that we badly need one. Just as Parcells stated on the draft special first thing goes wrong the fans will clamor to throw him into the fire ready or not.

This could severely ruin a 1st rd qb because most need a few years to sit the bench and develop. Ala Mr. Rodgers Green Bay.

Henne may have even had to start sooner than he was fully ready.

Mike Shanahan @ the Skins has a HUGE man-crush on Locker and will guarantee he picks Locker @ 10.

LMAO. Kaepernick is a 3rd round pick at best, but with the demand for QBs I could see him going in the second round. I saw how Parcells rated some players and I hope that Ireland doesn't have his players evaluated in the same way otherwise it will be another horrendous draft for Miami. Obviously the Dolphins will do everything they can to trade back, then pick their guy. IMO there are two position choices for Miami, QB or OG/C. If Pouncey is still available after they trade back then I'm ok with that pick, it fills a need, and would be a good value pick at that point. Or they could take a QB, I would take Mallett or Locker, and I think Mallett is likely going to still be around. Mallett has size, arm strength and smarts for the NFL, the only thing he doesn't have is mobility, but alot of hall of fame QBs were that mobile, its a minor problem. Draft OL help with other picks and use a pick for a RB, with a good OL and RB Mallett can succeed. Maybe not this year, but sit him for the year and next year he will be ready.


Many projected as a system qb too. They said he was a product of June Jones system. Just like the Spurrier qb's in his Gator era.

They were all great in that system but total flops in the nfl.

Hey DB...Mark Sanchez of the NY Jets make it all the way to the AFC Championship game in his rookie year...not everyone needs to be developed, but I do agree its the preferred path.

Don't take a QB at 15 because they are worried about job security? C'mon Armando! Henne is in the last year of his rookie contract. If we don't have a future starter on the team after this draft we risk having to Franchise Henne at the end of the season. Do you want to pay "Franchise QB Money" for "Henne Production?" That is suicide for this regime! Pick the QB at 15 and make sure he is ready to be under center in September 2012!

Thing about Locker is he'll have to be broken out of the bad habit of leaving pocket. He developed that bad habit having to run for his life so many times behind his horrible oline. LOL........


Kaep is like 6'5"

phinphanbill....nicely worded!

Micheal Lombardi is reporting the Dolphins will draft Ryan Mallett at 15.

I stand corrected....Kaepernick is NOT a midget, he's 6'4" and has some nice stats:

Colin Kaepernick #10 QB 2010 STATS
150.46 3,022 21
10,098 82
Birth Date November 3, 1987
Hometown TURLOCK, CA
Height 6-4
Weight 220 lbs.

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