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Draft day is here: Ready for a Prius draft party?

Draft day is here! Big doings here at The Miami Herald and on my radio show, Armando and Perkins on 640Sports.

Here's the deal: First off please check out the information below. It tells you what I believe will happen during this Dolphins draft. It tells you what should happen. It gives analysis and opinion. Pretty cool, right?

Then tune in to my radio show at 640-AM in South Florida or the webcast right here at The Miami Herald. We'll be talking Dolphins and NFL draft with tons of guests, including Nat Moore, Keith Sims, Tony Collins, Louis Oliver, Gino Torretta, Troy Drayton and others throughout the morning 6-10 a.m. You are welcome to call in toll free from anywhere in the United States at 1-888-640-9385.

We are having a draft party in a Prius. Let's just say it was the suggestion of a co-worker I respect. 640Sports will have on-air personalities driving around South Florida in a Toyota Prius throughout the day. For my show, the Sports Brothers will be on the highways and byways giving out prizes.

If you listen to the show and attend the Dolphins Draft party starting this evening at Sun Life Stadium, you can win the 640 Sports Challenge. All you have to do is listen, show up to the draft party and win.

The winner gets a Jake Scott autographed football. Scott was the Most Valuable Player of Super Bowl VII, the game that culminated Miami's perfect season.

As to the actual draft, consider my thoughts by way of categories:

Most likely draft pick in Round One: Ryan Tannehill. As I wrote in my column today, Tannehill simply makes the most sense for a team trying to plug a hole that's been leaking far too long. He is not ready to play in 2012. The Dolphins won't admit this because, well, it's probably not wise to set the bar so low. But as Mike Mayock said this evening on the NFL Network, the guy is going to take a year or two to become NFL functional. The Dolphins have that time because they have two vets that I write about in the column.

Do I dig the idea of Tannehill?: Not that much. I believe the Dolphins would be picking a guy at No. 8 that is not the eighth best player in the draft. I understand QBs are overdrafted. This would be a classic case of a player being overdrafted.

Most likely alternative: Trade down. The Cowboys need to jump higher to grab Alabama safety Mark Barron. They need to get up ahead of the Bills who covet Barron and are scheduled to pick 10th. If the Dolphins aren't truly sold on Tannehill to the point they could be talked into picking lower and adding a second-round pick, this is the scenario that could play out. Frankly, I would love this scenario because Miami should still get a good player at 14 and then have two second-round picks plus two third-round picks. The Cowboys have the 45th overall pick or 13th pick in the second round.

Most likely player drafted if not Tannehill: I still think the Dolphins love Fletcher Cox. He fits as an addition to their 4-3 look. He can be an inside presence -- you've seen what that did for Detroit when they got one. He has pass-rush skills that can translate to DE. And he'd be great in sub packages. There's also the fact he would play right away. By the way, if you're thinking the Dolphins have plenty of DT help, remember the team is considering Jared Odrick at DE and Randy Starks is unsigned after this season.

Most likely player drafted if not Tannehill and Cox: South Carolina CB Stephon Gilmore. Dolphins like him a lot. He also plays an impact position where the Dolphins have lacked players that turn the ball over. There are some NFL teams -- New England among them -- considering going with extra corners and dialing back to one safety. It is an adjustment to the offensive explosion that's happening in the league. Teams simply require more cover players.

Player the Dolphins absolutely, positively will not draft in the first round: Iowa OT Riley Reiff. Remember him? Kiper and Bucky Brooks and others had him listed to the Dolphins in their early mock drafts. The Dolphins don't love him much. He has short arms. He lacks explosive punch. And he simply would be a reach to anyone picking him in the top 20. And I don't foresee the Dolphins being that low in the round.

Quarterback I like most not named Luck or Griffin: Kirk Cousins of Michigan State. You will laugh, but he reminds me of Tom Brady. Under the radar guy. Chip on his shoulder. Played in a major conference for a long time and won a lot of games. Did heroic stuff in college. Was a wonderboy in the fourth quarter. Was very good in the red zone. Has a solid arm that could get better. Smart. He is a leader, as made obvious by the fact he was captain three consecutive years. He'll probably go in the late second or third round. I would take him. At the end of the day, I guess I'm big on production. You know, stuff that happens on the field.

Getting ahead of ourselves for Friday: In the second round I'm thinking offensive line and specifically right tackle. Mike Adams of Ohio State is a possibility. I also like Kendal Wright of Baylor as a WR possibility here. My concern is the Patriots, who worked out Wright as late as this week, will grab this kid late in the first round. If the Dolphins pick up multiple second-round picks, keep T.Y. Hilton of FIU on your radar. Kid is a TD waiting to happen. Otherwise he could be third-round material as both a WR and returner.

What must happen before the weekend is out: If the Dolphins leave this draft without having added a right tackle that can compete for a starting job, I believe the draft will have failed in part of its purpose. Yes, I know Lydon Murtha is the favorite of some fans and the team has liked him for some time. But he's injury-prone, folks. And durability is a critical factor. I saw Artis Hicks work at right tackle this week and he looks like someone that other teams discard. Maybe he'd look much better in pads. I hope so. But I believe the club needs to draft a right tackle at some point this draft that can plausibly take over the starting job.

Comments

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Many of you disapprove of Ireland, so be it. At the same time, he is not exactly and evil dictator initiating crimes against humanity.

I know it's easy to think we could all draft better, score on most picks, but we can't. It would be wise to analyze the last several drafts of several GM's before assuming Ireland is the worst, he isn't.

I just posted "The Honesty Poll" on my site. Take a look at it and answer it. It will be interesting to see the results of this one.

Ross is football stupid to let Ireland do another draft. Can you say clueless?

For all the Tannehill haters and for every saying he is NOT ready to be a starter, a quick look at recent FOOTBALL draft history:

Donovan McNabb - 2nd QB picked in that draft was supposed to be a project coming from an option offense and was the shock of the draft that year as he was viewed as possible to Chicago @ 12 but considered a reach even there and look at the career he went on to have. Year 2 in the playoffs and made it to a Super Bowl and had playoff success. What more could you ask for outside of a win which our very own Dan Marino couldn't accomplish.

Ben Roethlisberger - 3rd QB picked and wasn't expected to be an immediate starter because he played against less then stellar competition in the MAC and he ended up starting as a rookie and played well and the rest is history, 3 Super Bowls (2 wins)

Joe Flacco - wasn't expected to be a year 1 starter because he went to Delaware of all places and he started his entire rookie year, went to the playoffs, won 2 road playoff games (Dolphins, Titans) before losing to eventual champion Steelers and was a Lee Evans drop pass from the Super Bowl which by the way was a perfectly thrown ball.

My point none of YOU or myself have a clue what Tannehill will do. So if he is the pick hope for the best and know anything is possible.

Anyone know if someone has been drafted top 10 that didn't start (or was thrust into starting) right away?

It still boggles the mind to draft Tanne at 8 and he doesn't start right away. Going 8 out of 234 dictates you must start.

Makes no sense to sit him then throw him in midway if Moore or Garrard stinks it up.

And if that's the case, Ireland lied to Moore and Garrard about true competition. Seems to be a recurring theme with Jeff and this organization.

And if Jeff is a liar it only proves what people like Crowder have been saying all this time.

You can't trust the guy.

The Dolfans have no reason to party until Ireland is fired. In his 5th year the Dolphins are rebuilding like an expansion team. Sad.

JackSparrow,

Lol! Vick is capable of it. He just isn't capable of caring enough once he get's paid to be a professional QB who puts the time in.

A trade down with Dallas or whoever would be a no brainer for me. I just doubt it happens.

I think Tannehill will still be there at 14 but Barron who Dallas covets,could still be there as well.

I'm not sure they will be compelled to spend a 2nd rder to move all the way up to 8 to secure him. Hopefully Barron's name gets hot between now and 8pm.

I just went over our roster and we only have 6 defensive linemen. Soliai, Starks and Odrick are the only potential "starters". We have to get a quality pressure D-lineman or our d/b's will be cannon fodder for any decent team.
The Giants have beaten N.E. with 4 down lineman pressure in 2 Superbowls. When will we learn?
This is not a "need". IT IS A MUST!
Eli Manning is not a lot better quarterback than Matt Moore. He just has a better supporting cast, mainly a defense that doesn't give up a lot of 4th quarter points.

Texas,

Yes that would be ideal! If Miami were able to get Tannehill at #14 and then have 2-2nds and 2-3rds they would be able to get quite a bit of help and with a fairly deep draft at WR and pass rushers then round 2 would be finally what makes or breaks Ireland for me.

It's all speculation but it's fun.

F**k Brandon Marshall man. Try rooting for your own team instaed of crappy players who couldn't catch balls in the end zone and were locker room cancers. I say again, f**k Brandon Marshall.

Ireland is also getting the racist reputation for his mistreatment of Afro Americans. He should've been fired at the Dez Bryant debacle.

Who, Channing Crowder? Who does he play for? Isn't he that annoying radio show host? Warren Sapp said the same thing about Ireland, then a week later he filed for bankruptcy. Not saying Jeff is a genius but I'm certainly not going to let these two halfwits dictate to me who is or isn't smart and or trustworthy. I'll make up my own mind. You start letting idiots like that do your thinking for you and you're in for a rough life.

What's an afro american? HAHAHAHAHAHA too funny. And you're calling Jeff a racist? I know that post was a joke :)

Phins78, Seems like you've done a lot of balls and nut catching in your life time. :)

Armando, I'm in agreement with you two days in a row! Trade down, load up.

the highlight video on Cousins is pretty good. He reminds me of Drew Brees when he was at Purdue. If he's a late 2nd or 3rd round could be a gem. Nice strong down field passes, looks accurate.

Cousins is going to be a stud. He has the "it" factor. Tannehill has the "loser" factor. Didn't play well in big games and lost big leads.

I would rather take a sure thing at #8 and Cousins in late 2nd, early 3rd then gamble with Tannehill.

No trade downs, face it, this is not a year we will be playoff bound. We will be an average team that will play hard not be elite. We have to give Philipin and group some time "sigh". Take Tanny if Sherman believes he will be the man. Let him sit the year or two and make him the man.

Whatever, I hope you all have your laptops ready and charged up to Google the names of all of our draft picks.

Look if the PHINS going to draft #8 make sure he is going to start! There are not a lot of good players on this team, thanks to JI and Parsells!! And this team is rebuilding again!!! So trade down pickup a second rounder and sign the best available!! I like Cousins....I just feel very uncomfortable. About Tennehill!!

bobbyd,

Woah! Im shocked to hear you say that. I thought you were Matt Moore is a "top 10 QB in 2012" guy? Maybe not but you're right on with that! Take Tannehill and give Philbin his time to develop his guy.

My options. Option 1. Trade down if you can and get additional picks. Preberably another #2.
Option 2. If you can't trade down Draft Michael Floyd #1 and Kirk Cousins #2.

If people are so adamant we will be so bad this year why not trade down? Hell pull a Bellicheck and trade down and start collecting draft picks for the the next year also. I am not personally saying we should do this but if you are so certain we are going to be so bad why not load up on future picks as well??

One thing for sure, this draft will show whether we're building towards just putting more fannies in the seats during home games, or towards a dominant championship dynasty.

Even if we were to appear in a sb game 3-4yrs from now, imo, this draft tonight may determine if we win or lose that game. Yes folks, thats how powerful the good pick vs the right pick can be. The right pick is David DeCastro, all of the rest are just good picks.

Good picks can get you to the promised land. But, you dont want to get there and find that the milk and honey has already soured.

If we don't take Tannehill at 8 I feel pretty good that noone will take him before Cleveland at 22.

I'm not even sure that Cleveland takes him at 22, but I know they couldn't pass him up with their #5 selection in the 2nd rd.

Of all the prospects mentioned, Tannehill makes the LEAST sense. You really think coaches and fans have the patience for 3-4 yeas of waiting for a real QB? Philbin getting a hall pass for that long to even START geting us post-season capable?

Armando, you're beter than this. You should've Stopped going along with the sheep, and got a movement going to undermine this mass myth. Too late now.

You don't like it you say. You haven't said it enough.
You should've had cousins as a topic and picture every other day.

too late.

Guys,

I just hate seeing so close to building a championship dynasty-like oline(Long/Pouncey/DeCastro), then fall short by adding a brother of a lesser mother(passing on DeCastro). Even if we got a sb in the near future, then lost, I would always wonder what would have been if we had only selected DeCastro.

Especially if that brother of a lesser mother olineman, gave up the key strip sack, that loses that game for us. I would feel devastated.

Dolphan Rick,

IMO, the perfect landing spot for Tannehill is New Orleans. They pick far enough back for him to be a bargain, and Brees has 3-4 strong enough years left in him to give Tannehill time enough to develop.

When its time for Brees to walk away, Tannehill would be ready to plug in. Similar to Favre/Rogers situation. If I were Saints gm, then I would extremely be interested in bringing in Tannehill.

Even if Tan nehill's a good pick for us at #8, he still isnt the right pick for us at #8. DeCastro isnt the pretty pick, but he's the right pick for us.

JS LA,

Like I said earlier no one knows if it will take 1 year or 1 game before Tannehill starts. Recent proof of guys not expect to play early and have great success McNabb, Flacco, Big Ben. None of them were viewed as day 1 starters and McNabb had the Eagles in the playoffs by year 2 and both Flacco and Big Ben led their teams to the AFC Championship their rookie seasons.

All the Tannehill isn't ready stuff but you or anyone is short sighted and biased in my opinion. How can you say unequivaclly he wont start as a rookie or be ready by year 2?

AndyNj, never been a Moore fan, he is a fine, average QB, nothing more, nothing less. Time to invest in the future

Tannehill needs to be in a situation where he's almost guaranteed to sit for 2-3yrs. I just dont see that here. Tannehill probably has to start year2 here.

I dont see Moore resigning after this year if we spend the #8 at qb. David Garrard is truer mystery meat. The Jags didnt even keep him around to start until Gabbert was more ready to be a starter.

If Tannehill's drafted #8 tonight, its nearly guaranteed he'll have to our 2013 starter. Just hope the kid's ready because he's being thrown to the wolves in 2013.

I just want hope

AndyNJ,

You just may get your wish. No way do I see Matt Moore resigning after this year if Tannehill's selected at #8. Moore's a fa after this season, if he doesnt resign, Tannehill's likely the starter in 2013, ready or not.

YG,

I just seconds ago happen to see the NFL Network gang commenting on Decastro.

Casserly said that Decastro will be a value pick for someone who takes him in the 20's.

He said he ranks him in top 15 but doesn't think he will go until the 20's.

Of course those guys get paid to find something to talk about.

Bill Belichek was quoted as saying "Charlie Casserly has been wrong more than anyone."

Everyone says this and that about Matt Moore, average starter, yadda-yadda. But tell me, how many average nfl starting qb's put up a 87.0 qbr last season?

Call me crazy, but I didnt see an average qb last season. I saw a still young qb trying to come into his own that just needs to settle down a bit more.

I saw a possible up and coming young qb that put up 4 games with qbr's over 100. That wasnt done with smoke and mirrors folks. One times luck, 2 times is let see you do it again, 3 times is Im impressed, 4 times is hey we may be on to something here.

If Philbin/Sherman are true qb gurus, Matt Moore could be future elite qb putty in thier hands. $ qbr's over 100 last season, definitely gives Philbin/Sherman lots to work with.

bobby,

You were a Henne supporter I remember though, correct?

Dolphan Rick,

When I look at David DeCastro, I dont look at the value he brings in himself alone. I look at the entire scope of it. I look at the entirety of having an oline that featuire Long, Cogs, Pouncey, and DeCastro.

That's one helluva beastly look for an oline. Plus solidifies that weak right side for the next 10yrs. Sure DeCastro wouldnt be the fix all for a far lesser oline than ours. But added to the names we already have at oline, DeCastro makes us monstrously beastly!

He helps gives us an oline championship dynasties are made of. That cant be measured in terms of DeCastro's draft value alone.

If I were Dolphins gm and felt I needed to reach for a player. It would be DeCastro, I know I would have a pro bowl calibre player for the next 10yrs.

DeCastro may not be the right pick for everybody. But, because of what we've already started with Long/Pouncey, David "Im not Fidel" DeCastro, is the right pick for us.

Championship dynasties are waiting, we will Ireland answer tonight?

YG,

I'm with you are far as wanting to get a pro-bowl caliber starter for this year in the first rd.

I just think Decastro is unikely to be the pick. Last year after the Pouncey selection, they made it a point to announce he would play center not guard as guards don't normaly go in the top 20.

I see where your going with the o-line though. It was this organization's top goal 4 years ago.

Because of the championship dynasty type oline of the early 70's we made 3 straight sb appearances, winnin 2 straight. Bob Griese wasnt considered a great qb at that time. Behind that championship dynasty calibre oline, Bob Griese was beating hell out of great qb's he had no business beating, based on his current ability alone.

Bob Griese really didnt start coming into his own as a great qb until about about his 7th nfl season as far as greatness goes.

Dolfan Rick,

I will be surprised if Ireland makes the DeCastro our 1st pick too. I really domnt see it happening. But I would love it if it did.

Teams most times make good picks, but rarely do they make the right picks. DeCastro is a right pick for us, because of that, the chances become slimmer it actually happens. I just hope whatever pick is made it doesnt turn bust. That's even more devastating than not making the right pick.

After the Vikings sb loss to Miami, one of thier players was quoted as saying, "Its a privaledge to be 2nd place to those guys".

An opponent couldnt give you a greater compliment. I miss that kind of team in Miami. I think DeCastro(Long/Pouncey) could help get us back to that kind of team.

YG I will say though that I think it would be an ever bigger score to trade down and get Decastro at 14 plus and an extra pick. Than Tannehill and the extra pick.

I have to admit though I'm not a reach for Tannehill fan. I mean if Moore doesn't work out we'll be in prime position for Barkley next season.

I think Moore may just work out though. He definately earned a shot to try.

When the only good reason to draft Tannehill is because Mike Sherman knew him as a fetus and the only other arguments I hear is his "potential", then you have to stay away from this guy like poison. Yeah, great, why don't you draft the QB who got our present OC fired at Texas A&M & put him in the uncomfortable position of having to deal with him again. The media is trying to shove this guy down our throats to the point of nauseuam. Everywhere I read on mock drafts is "the Dolphins must draft him even though he's not a top ten pick" Yeah that's a heck of a ringing endorsement. The top ten picks should scream IMPACT and this guy does not.

I don't think Tannehil is worth the risk @ 8. If Barkely and maybe even Landry were declared we wouldn't even be talking about Tannehil getting picked so high. That really is a prayer pick. They should trade out or get the best defensive player available. I think there is going to be defensive talent @ 8. I would even take one of the WR's (Blackmon/Floyd)beffore taking Tannehil at that spot. The Fins could then take a prayer on a qb later at a much lower risk. I believe Tannehil belongs in that second tier group of qbs.

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