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Jeff Ireland on impact of offensive linemen

Remember when pundits were saying Reilly Reiff was Miami's likely pick at No. 8? Yeah, ain't happening.

But that doesn't mean the offensive line will be dismissed when the Dolphins dive into the draft next week. The Dolphins need help at right guard and right tackle. And they expect to get it.

But in the first round? God, I hope not.

As I've stated, the first round -- particularly the top part of the round -- should be set aside for impact players. I define impact players as those who make game-defining plays. They score touchdowns. They sack quarterbacks and end drives. They throw touchdowns. They come up with interceptions.

Offensive linemen do none of these.

And yet Dolphins general manager Jeff Ireland considers offensive linemen impact players. I know because today I asked Ireland if he believes offensive linemen can be in that group of impact players with the receivers and quarterbacks and alike.

“It depends on if it’s the right guy, yeah, I consider him an impact player," Ireland said. "If a guy can start 16 games every single year and be a Pro Bowler, I think that’s a pretty impactful player.”

I respectfully disagree. An offensive lineman may be a foundational player. He might be a franchise cornerstone. But impactful?

Nope.

Quick, name the left tackle for the New York Giants. Or the New Orleans Saints.

No offensive lineman can lead his team to a playoff win. No offensive lineman makes a difference in a game unless he’s completely inept and is giving up sack after sack after sack.

Richmond Webb was as good as there was at left tackle and he shut down Bruce Smith year after year. And yet it was the Bills always advancing to the Super Bowl and typically doing it at Miami's expense.

With Miami's new-look offense, it has been speculated the Dolphins will be searching for a different kind of offensive lineman this year -- a smaller, quicker lineman. Ireland said that is not true.

"I think [offensive line coach] Jim [Turner] and [offensive coordinator] Mike [Sherman] and [coach] Joe [Philbin] are still looking for big, strong, athletic types for offensive linemen," Ireland said.

Comments

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Rick, how is that good for Tampa? It isn't. No way they take that offer. You need to suggest something that another team will want too, a 3rd rounder won't cut it.

Folks, I like the "acorns" Ireland is digging up recently. Really.
Why not? There's some very real possibilities of upside to these obscure dudes like Naanee, and Brown. And as long as they cost us very little (which is the case) then why the heck not?

Might score on one.

Fine. That's settled.

Some new projects this year in FA, and a few from last couple of years. Fine. We've got some projects. Good.

Moving on.
Big-boy draft coming.

Now lets actually look for some real honest to goodness Pros. Starters. Pro-Bowlers. Dudes Kiper and McShay may have actually heard of, so we can find the write-ups on them when we get the pick.
You know, the stuff everyone else does.

I know --- following the herd is for losers. Packers, Patriots, Saints, Steelers, all trying to lead us wrong. But we can humor them and play along. Draft those famous players, and all that silly stuff.

Lets try it this year. If it doesn't work, then we can always revert to stealing Dallas' recycled players, and signing Hawaii's entire practice squad sight unseen.

Beezer,

I don't think either team would do it. I would do it though, if I were either team and the Bucs are my 2nd favorite team (i'm talkin wayy 2nd). I live near Tampa.

I don't know why they refuse to fill their middle lber position. A stud middler backer has always been a staple in their defense.

And in my scenario they could use their 2nd and 2 3rds to rebuild their secondary.

It's really a worse deal for us because we supposedly don't need a #1 WR in the WCO. I personally think Blackmon would be a great fit in the WCO.

Armando, thank god or someone, or something, YOU are not the GM, or head coach of the Miami Dolphins. How impactual do you believe any QB would be if the OL was not giving him the time to appear impactual? Or giving the receiver time to get open for the QB to throw him the ball so he can appear impactual, or opening up running lanes for the RB to appear impactual....
Sorry dude, but if Ireland drafts an impactual OL man, I'm good with that:) And I don't care if I can't think of his name ASAP...because you guys don't hype the name up.

Armando,

Did you really expect Jeff Ireland to actually give you his plans for the draft? To tell you the truth and not blow smoke up your butt? To give you a "scoop"?

If you did, then you're more stupid than he is. And, THAT says a lot...

I hope they don't trade up or back just take the best player available at the time, Jeff really hasn't done a very good job overall to date in regards to drafting maybe this will be his year , I HOPE SO

I would love to finally have a big playmaker, even if it is a QB.

No matter what people think of TanneHenne I think we can all agree on this.

If we draft him at #8 he needs to pan out this year, next year or the years after that.

Dude needs to pan out. This draft will define who Ireland is as a GM. If this dude doesn't pan out (eventually) it was all fools gold.

There is a huge number of locks and to be elite Players in this Draft probably thru the 2nd round. Impossible not to find a worthy pick at #8.

fool's gold definition

1 a kind of yellow metal that exists in some rocks and looks like gold

2 something that you think will be very exciting, very attractive etc but in fact is not

Focus on the second definition of fool's gold.

TanneHenne needs to PAN OUT this year, next year or subsequent years. If not, it was all fool's gold.

I read an interesting theory today. We draft TanneHenne at #8 and convert him back to WR.

Think about it...he's probably the 3rd best WR in the draft. IMO, he would make an excellent TE.

@oscar

EXACTLY!!!! Lot's of IMMEDIATE talent with the first 10 picks of the draft.

@JS_in_LA

No disrespect but you are pissing me off.

How can we even judge Ireland's drafting abilities since this is "SUPPOSEDLY" his second draft.

Just last week you guys were claiming it was all Tuna's fault. And that Ireland only had the reigns since last draft.

But now Ireland is a draft guru going all the way back to when he first came aboard the Dolphin Titanic?

Can't have it both ways! Was he or was he NOT responsible for the LAST 4 YEARS OF DRAFTING?

@JS_in_LA

If Jeff wasn't responsible for the last four years of drafting then how can anyone claim he is a draft guru?

If he was responsible then please list all the elite players he drafted in the last four years?

CAN'T HAVE IT BOTH WAYS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

which one of our qb's is left handed?

which one of our qb's is left handed?

OH BOY! You guys hear about this krap?

Accountant To Play Football For Miami Dolphins

http://www.thepostgame.com/blog/dish/201204/accountant-play-football-miami-dolphins

They low ball Flynn and Wake then sign a walk on?

Larry Little...Jim Langer...Dwight Stevenson..Webb/Simms just to mention a few. I think these players had a direct impact on the offensive side of the ball. Games are won or lost in the trenches. It always has been and always will be. Throw in a good QB and you've got a shot each year.

...And with the 8th pick of the 2012 nfl draft:

The Miami Dolphins select:

David DeCastro guard, from Stanford University!

Dumb dolfans go: booooooooooooooooo............ LOL

Oh yeah, hey Ohio dumass, Armando is no authority on anything. Who the hell did he ever gm for idiot? LOL

Smart statement by Ireland:

“It depends on if it’s the right guy, yeah, I consider him an impact player," Ireland said. "If a guy can start 16 games every single year and be a Pro Bowler, I think that’s a pretty impactful player.”

Dumass Armando:

"I respectfully disagree. An offensive lineman may be a foundational player. He might be a franchise cornerstone. But impactful?

Nope."

The difference between a knowledgeble gm and a dumass wannabe football expert troll. LOL

Armando,

When David DeCastro, with his superior 2nd level blocking, springs Reggie Bush for multiple 20-75yd gains or td runs.

Then tell us how unimpactful olinemen are. If Matt Moore throws for 30 or more td passes, tell us how unimpactful olinemen are. That would mean he wasnt running for his life as often as he was in 2011 wouldnt it Einstien! LOL

Its going to be sort of hilarious watching Andrew Luck in Indy this year.

At Stanford, he 2 nfl pro bowl calibre olinemen(Jonathan Martin/David DeCastro) and looked like a pro qb playing college football. At Indy he will have college calibre olinemen that will make him look like a college qb trying to play nfl football.

Great thing Andrew Luck has above average speed for a qb. He'll need it this year in Indy. Sure he has all of the qb tools, but at Stanford he may have also had the best offensive line not playing in the nfl.

At Stanford, Luck's oline was better than a few pro nfl teams. Heck, Luck may have had a better oline at Stanfor than Matt Moore had in Miami. LOL

Colts will probably go 2-13 in 2012. Until Luck gets a real pro oline he'll suck and Indy will suck.

Luck will be glad he stayed for his senior at Stanford when he finds out whats awaiting his 1st season in the nfl. The Colts oline will nearly get him killed. LOL

Yesterdays Gone....I agree with you. DeCastro is probably top 5 player in this draft. Him and Pouncey on the same line ? Talk about impact....

Ron,

Many of our dumbfans dont get it. Build a great oline and youre skill position players will be even greater. It also makes your defense greater.

Just like clockwork, the past 2-3 season, our defense began to fall apart the last 3-4 games of the year. That's wear and tear of having a offense that forces them to spend so much time on the field. Plus not being able to score many points limit what you can do defensively.

A great oline is the base base foundation of a truly great offense. Great skill pieces are of very limited use when they cant be properly put into action. A ghreat oline allows this.

Plus Pouncey and DeCastro are great at pulling. Most teams are lucky to have 1 great pulling olineman. Is just purely insane what the impact of having 2 great pulling olinemen would be. LOL

If the DeCastro comparisons with Hutchinson are even remotely close, it's not a bad pick. I will take any player (aside from KR, P, K) that will be a perennial Pro-Bowler. That's a hit in my book.

Were the Jets wrong a few years back when they picked perennial pro-bowlers Ferguson and Mangold in the first round? No.

If not DeCastro, the other impactful player I'd like to see is Kuechly. Can push Dansby outside, since he is the self-proclaimed "best LB in the NFL".

Armando

I completely disagree. What you have done is equate impact to highlight. A receiver scores a 70 yard touchdown. If the left tackle fails to block the highlight does not happen. An online dictionary defines impact as the following with a synonym of "affect':

2. To affect or influence, especially in a significant or undesirable manner; as, budget cuts impacted the entire research program; the fish populations were adversely impacted by pollution.

Clearly offensive lineman impact at the very beginning of the play. They are as you say foundational but I believe the word impact is misused in most cases.

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