Miami Dolphins 2012 Mock Draft: Best-Case and Worst-Case 7-Round Scenarios

Scott AltmanCorrespondent IMarch 15, 2012

Miami Dolphins 2012 Mock Draft: Best-Case and Worst-Case 7-Round Scenarios

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    The NFL draft hasn't been too kind to the Miami Dolphins in recent years. 

    For example, the Dolphins desperately needed to add a young quarterback last offseason, but all of the top QB prospects were drafted before they were on the clock. 

    And even when there are great quarterbacks on the board, the Dolphins have opted to address a different position (example: Jake Long over Matt Ryan, Ronnie Brown over Aaron Rodgers).

    One of these years, the chips are bound to fall in Miami's favor. But knowing this team's luck, we should always prepare for the worst. 

    Here's a look at the Dolphins' dream draft and their nightmare draft. 

1st Round

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    Best Case: Justin Blackmon, WR, Oklahoma State

    I fully expect the Dolphins to draft a pass-rusher with their first-round pick, but if Justin Blackmon falls, then Miami cannot pass on him. General consensus has Blackmon going to the Rams with the sixth-overall pick, but I'm not so sure that'll happen. Blackmon is an incredible talent, yes, but he's only 6'0", 203 pounds. Physically, he doesn't compare to other highly drafted wideouts like Calvin Johnson and Larry Fitzgerald

    Blackmon definitely boosted his stock by running a 4.4 40 at his pro day, so the odds of him falling to the 'Fins are slim, but this would be a dream come true. 


    Worst Case: Ryan Tannehill, QB, Texas A&M

    Ryan Tannehill has gone from borderline first-round pick to rumored top-five pick over the last few weeks. And quite frankly, I don't understand why. He didn't even work out at the combine. 

    Tannehill is blessed with freak athleticism, but he only played quarterback for two seasons at Texas A&M, and he wasn't overwhelmingly successful. Miami's new offensive coordinator, Mike Sherman, coached Tannehill at Texas A&M, but I think he's just too much of a reach and a gamble to use a top 10-draft pick on. 

2nd Round

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    Best-Case Scenario: Coby Fleener, TE, Stanford

    With Justin Blackmon now in the fold, the most sensible move for the Dolphins here is to draft a pass-rusher. But, the Dolphins also need to make a concerted effort to add some young weapons now that Brandon Marshall is gone.

    Stanford's Coby Fleener might be the most complete tight end in this year's draft, and he would fill a huge need. He boasts a 6'6", 244-pound frame, and Jeff Ireland tends to favor big players. 

    Fleener also reeled in 10 touchdown receptions from Andrew Luck last season. There's a chance Fleener goes in the first round, but if he's available when Miami drafts in the second round, Jeff Ireland would be foolish to pass on him. 


    Worst-Case Scenario: Andre Branch, DE, Clemson 

    In all likelihood, the Dolphins will draft a pass-rusher within the first two rounds. Hopefully, the team passes on Clemson's Andre Branch. 

    He is a one-year wonder with durability concerns, and the last time Miami drafted a Clemson defensive end in the second round (Phillip Merling), things didn't turn out too well. 

3rd Round

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    Best-Case Scenario: Trumaine Johnson, CB/FS, Montana 

    Even though the Dolphins just signed Richard Marshall, they still need to add another defensive back. Marshall will reportedly play cornerback, so unless Miami is confident in Chris Clemons or Reshad Jones, they should consider drafting a safety. 

    Montana's Trumaine Johnson played cornerback at Montana, but he has the size of an NFL safety. Johnson boasts a thick 6'2", 204-pound build and pumped out 19 reps on the bench press at the combine. 


    Worst-Case Scenario: T.Y. Hilton, WR, FIU

    Florida International's T.Y. Hilton is an electric wide receiver with great hands, speed and return skills. Last season, he reeled in 72 receptions for 1,038 yards and seven touchdowns for the Panthers.

    However, Hilton has a disconcertingly slim 183-pound build. Can he absorb hits from NFL linebackers and safeties?

    Miami's offense still needs more explosive assets, but Hilton is not the most ideal fit. Hilton wouldn't dethrone Davone Bess as a returner or as a slot receiver, so the 'Fins should use this pick on a more pressing need. 

3rd Round (from Chicago Bears)

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    Best-Case Scenario: Tommy Streeter, WR, Miami

    Tommy Streeter is 6'5" and tips the scales at 219 pounds—and he ran a 4.40 40-yard dash. Even though the Dolphins desperately need to add a pass-rusher at this point, I don't think they can pass on a specimen like Streeter. 

    His combination of size and speed is amazing, and it could boost him into the second round. But, Streeter only had one productive season at Miami, and that may cause teams to hesitate. 

    The Dolphins shouldn't hesitate if Streeter is available in the third round, though. The offense needs to add more playmakers, and it's time for Jeff Ireland to take some risks. 


    Worst-Case Scenario: Joe Adams, WR, Arkansas

    Another wide receiver for the Dolphins to avoid is Arkansas' Joe Adams. He was an electric playmaker for the Razorbacks, but he might struggle to transition into the pros. 

    Adams is only 179 pounds. Not only could he struggle to absorb hits, but he also might struggle with press coverage. 

4th Round

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    Best-Case Scenario: Bruce Irvin, DE/OLB, West Virginia

    It's tough to envision the Dolphins waiting until the fourth round to draft a pass-rusher, but it's still a plausible scenario. And if the chips fall in Miami's favor, then Bruce Irvin will be around in the fourth round. 

    Irvin is a 6'3", 245-pound defensive end-outside linebacker with sub-4.5 speed and an impressive college resume. He needs to bulk up and get stronger, but he'd be a steal this late in the draft. 


    Worst-Case Scenario: Donte Paige-Moss, DE/OLB, North Carolina

    Realistically, the Dolphins could double up on pass-rushers. I suspect they'll draft one in the first round and then another one later on. 

    One pass-rusher the team should avoid is Donte Paige-Moss. He tore his ACL in North Carolina's bowl game and proceeded to bash the program on Twitter. Paige-Moss was also charged with a misdemeanor assault after punching a teammate

5th Round

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    Best-Case Scenario: Nate Potter, OT/OG, Boise State 

    Just like it's tough to envision the 'Fins waiting until the fourth round to draft a pass-rusher, it's tough to envision them waiting this long to draft an offensive tackle (If Miami signs Eric Winston, then they can wait until the later rounds to draft one, though).

    Boise State's Nate Potter has the kind of size that will attract Jeff Ireland. He's 6'6", 303 pounds and could help provide depth to Miami's thin offensive line. 


    Worst-Case Scenario: Daniel Herron, RB, Ohio State

    The Dolphins just re-signed Steve Slaton, but he'll still have to fight for a job in training camp. So, his contract extension doesn't mean the 'Fins won't look into adding another young running back to the roster. 

    One name we should hope Jeff Ireland avoids is Daniel Herron. He appeared primed for stardom at OSU, but his role in a pair of scandals derailed his career. 

    Despite his success at Ohio State, the Dolphins should stay away. Herron weighs in at a lanky 183 pounds and doesn't look like anything more than a situational third-down back with off-the-field baggage.  

6th Round

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    Best-Case Scenario: Chris Rainey, RB/RS, Florida

    Last year, the Dolphins set out to "increase team speed." The team added Reggie Bush and Clyde Gates, but Jeff Ireland still isn't content. Miami has already added three offensive skill players, but it can't hurt to take another one this late in the draft. 

    Chris Rainey showcased his speed and agility at the combine, recording a 4.45 40-yard dash, 6.50 three-cone drill, 3.93 20-yard shuttle and 11.06 60-yard shuttle. All of those times were amongst the combine's fastest. 

    Rainey only weighs 180 pounds, so he's going to have to bulk up. However, he has extensive experience at wide receiver and running back and could become the dynamic, Randall Cobb-esque playmaker Miami wants. 


    Worst-Case Scenario: Cliff Harris, CB, Oregon

    The Dolphins should add a defensive back at some point in the draft. Nolan Carroll has been inconsistent thus far, and Sean Smith may bolt for free agency next summer, so it can't hurt to start developing a young cornerback. 

    Oregon's Cliff Harris turned heads at the combine, but he's had multiple run-ins with the law (he was briefly kicked off of the team) and weighs in at a lanky 175 pounds. 

7th Round

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    Best-Case Scenario: Rishaw Johnson, OG, California (PA)

    Much like they did last year with Jimmy Wilson, the Dolphins should roll the dice on a risky prospect in the seventh round. 

    Rishaw Johnson was a blue-chip high school recruit who played for Ole Miss, but was dismissed at the start of the 2010 season for violating team rules. He transferred to California (PA) for the 2011 season. 

    Johnson has the size and raw ability to become a serviceable lineman, but questions about his work ethic and attitude must be answered. Taking a sixth-round flier on a player with high potential seems like a worthwhile gamble, though. 


    Worst-Case Scenario: Adewale Ojomo, DE, Miami

    The Dolphins have not drafted a University of Miami Hurricane since 2004, when they selected Vernon Carey in the first round. That trend could end this year, but the Dolphins should avoid defensive end Adewale Ojomo. 

    Ojomo only weighs in at 270 pounds, making him far too light to play defensive end or defensive tackle in the NFL. If he can pack onto his frame, then he might have a chance. However, it won't be easy for Ojomo to reach an acceptable weight and retain his athleticism.