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#pounditSunday, April 18, 2021

Articles tagged: Miami Dolphins

Dolphins acquire Matt Breida in trade with 49ers

Miami Dolphins logo

The Miami Dolphins have picked up another useful piece in a draft day trade.

As first reported by ESPN’s Adam Schefter, the Dolphins traded a fifth round pick to the San Francisco 49ers in exchange for running back Matt Breida.

Breida is a nice, affordable pickup for Miami. He’s been a productive running back for the 49ers, averaging five yards per attempt in the first three seasons of his pro career. The 49ers deemed him expendable in part because of the emergence of Raheem Mostert, as San Francisco was able to reach the Super Bowl with limited contributions from Breida.

The Dolphins’ leading rusher in 2019 was quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick, and no team had fewer rushing yards overall. They were definitely in the market for a running back, and Breida is a nice solution for them at this point of the offseason.

Mel Kiper explains why he now thinks Dolphins will draft Tua Tagovailoa

Tua Tagovailoa

The Miami Dolphins have been generating the majority of the headlines leading into the NFL Draft on Thursday night, any many believe they are intentionally leaking information to fool teams into thinking they are not going to draft Tua Tagovailoa. ESPN’s Mel Kiper is now on board with that theory.

In his final first-round mock draft before the real event, Kiper predicted that the Dolphins will select Tagovailoa with the fifth overall pick. His previous mock draft had former Oregon star Justin Herbert going to Miami at No. 5 and the Los Angeles Chargers taking Tagovailoa with the next pick, but Kiper has since changed his mind. He explained his rationale during an appearance on “Get Up!” Thursday morning, noting that he thinks the way the Dolphins missed out on Drew Brees years ago could push them toward Tagovailoa.

Tagovailoa has drawn comparisons to Brees. Former Dallas Cowboys executive and Pro Football Hall of Famer Gil Brandt called Tagovailoa a “left-handed Drew Brees” and praised the former Alabama star for his accuracy. When Brees was a free agent in 2006, the Dolphins were on the verge of signing him before a doctor raised concerns about his surgically repaired throwing shoulder. Miami traded for Daunte Culpepper instead, Brees signed with the New Orleans Saints and the rest is history.

Kiper and others believe the Dolphins will keep the Brees situation in mind when making a decision about Tagovailoa. If not for Tua’s injury history, he would have had as good of a shot as Joe Burrow to be the top overall pick. Drafting him will carry a risk, but Miami chose not to take a similar risk with Brees 14 years ago and has regretted it since.

One report this week claimed the Dolphins are looking to trade up for a non-QB, but it would be downright shocking if they actually did that. We’ve thought all along that they are enamored with Tagovailoa, and our opinion hasn’t changed.

Dolphins have reportedly called Bengals numerous times about No. 1 pick

Joe Burrow

The Miami Dolphins are widely expected to take a quarterback with their first pick in Thursday night’s NFL Draft, but it seems like the player they covet the most is one that has essentially already been taken off the board.

The Dolphins have called the Cincinnati Bengals multiple times in recent weeks to see if the No. 1 overall pick is available for trade, ESPN’s Adam Schefter reports. They have been stonewalled every time.

The Dolphins have three picks in the first round — No. 5, No. 18 and No. 26. That should, in theory, put them in a strong position to be able to move up the board, but all indications have been that the Bengals have settled on Joe Burrow with the top pick and have zero intention of entertaining offers for him. Some wondered if Miami would overwhelm the Bengals with an offer prior to the start of the draft, but the chances of that happening are slim to none.

With Burrow off the table, the Dolphins reportedly have a deal in place with another team to move up two spots. The big question is which player they are planning to draft at No. 3.

Report: Dolphins, Lions to trade first-round draft picks

Miami Dolphins logo

The Detroit Lions have been fielding phone calls for the No. 3 overall pick in Thursday’s NFL Draft, and they may have a taker.

The Miami Herald’s Armando Salguero reports that the Lions are planning to pick in the Dolphins’ spot at No. 5, which suggests the teams would be swapping first-round picks.

There has been noise about the Dolphins wanting to move up to No. 3, but it was supposedly for an offensive lineman. That makes little sense.

If Miami wants to move up that high, it’s probably to take a quarterback. We have long believed they want Tua Tagovailoa, and a trade would fit in with that desire. Detroit still might be able to draft Jeff Okudah at No. 5, so a move down by two spots would make sense for them.

Report: Dolphins interested in moving up to No. 3 in draft for offensive lineman

Miami Dolphins tank

The Miami Dolphins currently hold the fifth overall pick in Thursday’s NFL Draft, and the wide-ranging assumption is that they will take a quarterback at that spot. However, they are reportedly interested in moving up the board to put themselves in position to draft an … offensive lineman?

Ian Rapoport of NFL Media reports that the Dolphins have been calling teams ahead of them to determine if they can trade up. The most interesting part of the report is that they are supposedly not looking to move up for Tua Tagovailoa or Justin Herbert.

There are several offensive linemen that could go in the top 10, and the Dolphins would likely take either Alabama’s Jedrick Wills Jr. or Georgia’s Andrew Thomas if they draft a player at that position with their first pick. Miami has three picks in the first round, but it seems highly unlikely that they would be able to get Tagovailoa or Hebert at No. 18 overall.

The Dolphins could either be simply doing their due diligence or trying to deceive other teams. But if they’re serious about trading up for an offensive lineman, that would not be a popular move among fans. It could also open the window for a certain division rival to rocket up the board in pursuit of Tagovailoa.

Should the Dolphins pass on both Tagovailoa and Herbert, fans will immediately start the “tanking” talk again. Some believe they may actually want to put themselves in position to draft Trevor Lawrence next season, and not taking a quarterback in the top five would breathe life into that theory.

Report: Dolphins unlikely to draft Justin Herbert at No. 5

Justin Herbert

There has been some buzz recently about the possibility of Justin Herbert being drafted by the Miami Dolphins, but that may not happen.

Pro Football Network draft expert Tony Pauline published a good notes column about the draft on Monday that you should read. Among his notes, Pauline said the Dolphins are not planning to take Herbert with the No. 5 overall pick.

This report runs contrary to a prediction from ESPN’s Mel Kiper Jr., who recently said the Dolphins would take Herbert over Tua Tagovailoa. Pauline says if Miami does not go with a quarterback, they have interest in offensive lineman Andrew Thomas.

We have said all along that we believe Miami has long coveted Tagovailoa and will take him, even though all the talk has been about the former Oregon quarterback rising up draft boards. We will find out on Thursday what Miami is really planning in the draft. They haven’t had a true franchise quarterback since Dan Marino though, so it would be surprising if they did not try to resolve that matter.

Could Dolphins overwhelm Bengals with offer for Joe Burrow?

Joe Burrow

The Cincinnati Bengals have been on the clock for the NFL Draft since the conclusion of the 2019 season, and it seems all but certain that they are going to select former LSU star Joe Burrow with the No. 1 overall pick. However, nothing is official until the draft card has been submitted, and the Miami Dolphins could make an aggressive push to move up to first overall at some point in the next several days.

The Dolphins have three first-round picks — No.’s 5, 18 and 26 — in the upcoming draft, and Ben Volin of The Boston Globe believes there is at least a “small chance” they could overwhelm the Bengals with an offer for the top overall pick before Thursday. Miami has been desperate to find stability at quarterback since the Dan Marino era, and Cincinnati could still end up with one of the top QBs in the draft even if they make a trade with the Dolphins. If the Bengals believe in Tagovailoa’s upside and aren’t overly concerned about his health, a deal with the Dolphins might make sense.

Still, it is very unlikely. The Bengals have given no indication that they are open to trading the top overall pick, and it has been assumed for months that they are going to take Burrow. There was some chatter in February that Burrow could pull an “Eli Manning” and refuse to play for Cincy, but Burrow has said he will gladly play for whichever team drafts him and seems to have had a positive meeting with the Bengals’ brass a few weeks ago.

Tagovailoa’s rising stock adds another element of intrigue to the draft. Had it not been for the hip injury he suffered that required surgery, the former Alabama star would have had just as much of a chance as Burrow to go No. 1 overall. We have heard some rumblings that another team could make a big move up the board for him, so all options appear to still be on the table.

Report: Dolphins ‘intrigued’ by Jordan Love

The Miami Dolphins are well-positioned to get a quarterback with the No. 5 pick in the NFL Draft, but the lingering question is which one they’ll go for.

According to Jason La Canfora of CBS Sports, teams around the league believe the Dolphins are “intrigued” by Utah State quarterback Jordan Love. However, they’re unlikely to take him fifth overall, and would have to risk finding a way to trade back into the first round to get him if they go for an offensive lineman instead.

The Dolphins could keep it simple and simply select Tua Tagovailoa at No. 5 and sort out the quarterback position, but it’s not clear if that’s what they’re going to do.

Love is attracting a lot of interest from teams later in the first round. The reality is that if Miami is in a situation where they have to trade back up to get Love, they’d be competing with a lot of teams that might be better-positioned to take him. As a result, Love to Miami seems unlikely, even if the Dolphins are very interested.

Report: Dolphins tried to rush Tua Tagovailoa visit before restrictions

Tua Tagovailoa

The Miami Dolphins are widely expected to take a quarterback with the fifth overall pick in next week’s NFL Draft, but there has been plenty of debate over whether they prefer Tua Tagovailoa or Justin Herbert. One thing we now know, however, is that they tried to get a close look at Tagovailoa right around the time life as we know it came to a screeching halt.

The Dolphins scrambled to try to get Tagovailoa to Miami just before the NFL put a stop to visits between teams and prospects due to the coronavirus pandemic, ESPN’s Adam Schefter reports. While team doctors were able to examine the former Alabama star at the NFL Scouting Combine in February, they were hoping to get a closer look last month.

It’s obvious the Dolphins have some level of interest in Tagovailoa. If not for injury concerns, Tagovailoa would have had a shot to be the top overall pick in the draft ahead of Joe Burrow. That’s the primary reason some experts expect Miami to take Herbert over the former Alabama star.

Tagovailoa’s lengthy injury history was already a concern for teams, and the coronavirus restrictions could prevent him from being able to ease some of that. While the footage we saw from his pro day looked promising, the inability of teams to have their doctors examine Tua closer to the draft may complicate things further for him.

Mel Kiper predicts Dolphins will draft Justin Herbert over Tua Tagovailoa

Justin Herbert

The Miami Dolphins are expected to target a quarterback in the upcoming NFL Draft, and it seems likely that they will use the No. 5 overall pick on one. Tua Tagovailoa looks healthy and his stock is rising at the perfect time, but at least one top draft analyst believes the Dolphins prefer Justin Herbert over the former Alabama star.

ESPN’s Mel Kiper released his latest mock draft on Tuesday, and he has the Dolphins selecting Herbert at No. 5 and Tagovailoa going No. 6 to the Los Angeles Chargers. Kiper explained his rationale in an appearance on “Get Up!” and said he has heard from sources that Tagovailoa’s injury history is a still a big concern.

“Durability concern is why I dropped him. Some think he could drop a little farther than that,” Kiper said. “It’s not only just about the injuries he’s had, but protecting his body and not taking hits. Will he learn to do that once he’s in the NFL?”

As for Herbert, Kiper said he doesn’t understand why people are saying the former Oregon star has a low ceiling.

“He’s got a ton of talent. His upside is through the roof,” Kiper said. “He’s got as much physical athletic ability (as anyone). He’s super intelligent, rocket arm, he can run … he’s got awesome talent. Will it come together in terms of anticipation and all that in the NFL? We’ll see.”

Where Tagovailoa will be selected is probably the storyline people are watching the most heading into the draft, and Kiper’s biggest rival seems to think the talk of Herbert going over Tua is absurd. Tagovailoa likely impressed teams with the video footage from his private workout recently, and that could be enough to cement his place over Herbert. We’ll know in less than two weeks.