"We don't need a linebacker," says Dolphins fans everywhere. "Karlos Dansby has been great," they continue.
Well in 1983 we didn't need a quarterback, but the Dolphins had the chance to grab someone who was going to be special despite having other holes on the team, and went and chose one anyways.
How did that work out? Very well.
Same thing would happen with Manti Te'o. I would say he's a better pick value-wise in round one, and he will be a hot enough commodity that if the Dolphins are on the clock and he's on the board, sell the pick to the highest bidder.
But wouldn't you want someone this good for yourself?
There will be some good receivers and corners in rounds two and three that will fit in well in Miami, and if Long leaves the Dolphins could always keep Martin at left tackle while moving John Jerry to right tackle (it's just a hunch but I think it could work) while drafting a guard later in the draft.
Within two years, Te'o will be the best linebacker in the NFL. Wouldn't you want the Dolphins to have that?
No disrespect to Karlos Dansby, Kevin Burnett and Koa Misi, but when was the last time Miami had a linebacker with Te'o's football IQ? If you said Zach Thomas, you are absolutely correct.
But imagine if Zach Thomas was 6'2" 255 pounds and had Brian Urlacher's skill set (and Urlacher is not exactly a slouch in the football IQ department himself).
That package is a football player that not only is the best in his class, but has the potential to be mentioned with some pretty big names at his position (not mentioning the names but when you think linebacker, I know what names you will be going to).
Te'o racked up 101 tackles this season while also sacking the quarterback 1.5 times, and picking off seven passes. He also deflected four passes.
Miami does need someone that can successfully cover Rob Gronkowski (every team does), especially since just about any tight end has torched the Dolphins in the last few seasons.
Manti Te'o would be the answer to that, and the player that would be most likely to put fear into Tom Brady, as well as whoever is lining up under center for the Jets and Bills in 2013.