NFL Draft 2013: 6 Prospects the Miami Dolphins Should Not Target
This article lists six high-profile prospects, who, for whatever reason, will most likely not be on the Dolphins roster come next season.
Each player will most likely have been coveted by the fanbase at one time or another, and this article is by no means meant as a slight on the players, who all have a lot of potential and may well go on to have excellent careers in the NFL.
However, in my opinion, it is unlikely that their NFL careers will begin in Miami.
Chance Warmack, Guard, Alabama
There’s no debate over how good a player Chance Warmack is, because he has the tools to be a Pro Bowl guard in the NFL, but even if he is the best player on the board when Miami picks in the first round, he shouldn’t necessarily be the selection.
Warmack has the qualities to become an excellent player, but neither he nor D.J. Fluker fit what the Dolphins are doing on the offensive line.
Warmack would likely be available when Miami picks in the first round, and on paper he would offer good value at the pick, as he has been in the conversation as the top player on the board. However, with the Dolphins offense employing a zone-blocking scheme, Warmack just doesn’t make sense.
If Miami employed a power-blocking offense, then you could certainly make a case for him, but the way things are, if the Dolphins wanted an interior lineman with their first pick, Jonathan Cooper should be the selected; he has the size and agility to fit their offense perfectly.
Warmack, meanwhile, is much bigger than the average zone-blocking guard, and while he has decent agility, he is not elite in that area. He is much better suited to using his power to bully defensive linemen in the NFL, with a team that isn’t Miami.
Sam Montgomery, Defensive End/Outside Linebacker, LSU
A talented pass-rusher in college, Sam Montgomery would be a candidate to line up opposite Cam Wake in the Miami defense, having recorded 16 sacks and 25.5 tackles for loss in his last two seasons at LSU.
However, questions about his work ethic have become very public—with the help of the Tigers’ own strength and conditioning coach—and the Dolphins might think twice about spending an early draft pick and then giving a large sum of money to a young man who doesn’t always give 100 percent, then watching him settle in South Florida.
His physical tools are there for all to see, and while he requires coaching to max out his pass-rushing ability, he has showed he can get to the quarterback. However, his recent comments on taking plays, or games, off, were a huge red flag.
Montgomery didn’t just admit he took plays off against smaller teams, both he also admitted needing a coach to push him, lacking work ethic and self-discipline, and that betting with Barkevious Mingo helped to motivate him to do put in more effort on the field in college. Hardly a glowing self-assessment, was it?
He worked hard to recover from a blown ACL in 2010, but might have blown any respect gained for that hard work with his comments, in addition to the very public way his own coaches criticised his (and others') work ethic.
He might be worth a third-round pick for Miami, but considering the Dolphins value work ethic and motor so highly, the chances he lands in South Florida aren’t great.
David Amerson, Cornerback, North Carolina State
I know that David Amerson is a popular pick among some corners of the Dolphins’ fanbase. But while the 6'3" corner looks like a great prospect on paper, with 18 interceptions through his college career, his tape tells a different tale.
Amerson plays in a similar manner to how his NFL career may play out: boom or bust.
Amerson’s college interceptions came because of his tremendous size and ability to attack the ball like a wide receiver. However, in doing so, his aggressive style leaves him open to be beaten.
He takes chances on the ball, and opposing quarterbacks will happily take advantage of this in the NFL, using pump fakes to get him to bite, or double moves which he is also susceptible to.
His ability to swivel his hips and run with an opponent is also questionable, leading some to argue he may be a safety in the NFL, but two of Amerson’s most worrying traits are taking bad angles and getting beaten deep. At safety, both of these concerns will be exacerbated. He gave up a lot of big plays in college, and while he will create turnovers, he also has the potential to hurt a team with a bad play.
While Amerson’s size and ball skills will help his draft stock, his tendency to go for a big play, and end up giving up a big play, is a big red flag—one which might put off the conservative Jeff Ireland.
Da’Rick Rogers, Wide Receiver, Tennessee Tech
Da’Rick Rogers is a talented receiver, but one the Miami Dolphins will most likely steer clear of.
Miami might still be considering adding one final piece to its wide receiver corps, but the 6'2", 217-pound receiver from Tennessee Tech won’t be it.
Rogers brings talent (over 1,200 yards receiving and 11 touchdowns last season) with a lot of character issues and red flags after he was kicked off the team at Tennessee, and that is something the Dolphins front office—especially coach Joe Philbin—will not tolerate, particularly at the wide receiver position.
Miami traded Brandon Marshall and released Chad Ochocinco. Why would they now choose to add a receiver with clear character issues? Rogers’ unfortunate list of incidents include being charged with disorderly conduct and resisting arrest, admitting to failing drugs tests, and violating team rules which resulted in his dismissal from Tennessee.
Of course he is talented and has great size, but in addition to his off-field concerns, he has been known to give up on routes when he isn’t targeted, and often looks like he isn’t giving 100 percent.
Joe Philbin doesn’t want “divas” on his team, and that is exactly what Rogers appears to be. Don’t expect to see him in aqua and orange next year.
Dion Sims, Tight End, Michigan State
Miami clearly needs a tight end capable of blocking as well as catching, and Dion Sims’ style of play fits the bill perfectly. He would be an excellent candidate for selection were it not for one thing: an injury report almost as long as Lindsey Lohan’s criminal record.
Sims can catch, block, and has excellent size at 6'5" and 285 pounds, but Jeff Ireland typically shies away from players who have struggled with injuries, and Sims has struggled badly in this regard.
Suffering a knee injury in high school, a broken wrist among various other injuries in 2011, and an ankle injury which ruled him out a further three games in 2012, will certainly lead to major concerns over his durability.
Sims has another red flag following a guilty plea to a charge of receiving and concealing stolen goods, which meant he missed the whole 2010 season, but while he may have turned the corner in terms of his character, his injuries may haunt him.
In total, he missed five games in 2009, the whole 2010 season, six games in 2011, and three games in 2012. So while he would fit the Dolphins’ needs, Ireland’s reluctance to gamble on a prospect with past injuries suggests Sims won’t land in Miami this offseason.
Tyrann Mathieu, Defensive Back, LSU
Arguably the most talked-about prospect in the draft didn’t even play college football in 2012, but Tyrann Mathieu will still get his opportunity in the NFL.
The “Honey Badger” was a playmaker at LSU with four interceptions, six sacks, 11 forced fumbles, as well as two punt returns for touchdowns, but extra-curricular activities derailed his college career and saw him kicked off the team.
Fans may drool over his ability, which saw him make the Heisman Trophy final and win SEC Defensive Player of the Year in 2011, but his rap sheet is long and worrying, with repeatedly failed drugs tests and multiple run-ins with both college and law enforcement due to his indulging in marijuana use.
Mathieu was given every chance by LSU to stay on the program, but eventually, having blown all of them, he was dismissed.
NFL teams will rightly question his maturity, and most will already be questioning whether he can be trusted on their team. Furthermore, trusting him with the rewards of an NFL contract will raise even more concerns.
If the major character red flags weren’t enough for Miami, he is also undersized at 5'9" and 180 pounds, and is likely a nickel corner in the NFL. Everybody knows Jeff Ireland rarely drafts undersized prospects.
So, despite all his talents, ask yourselves this: Would Jeff Ireland really give a six-figure contract to someone who has consistently used drugs in college, and would he trust him enough to not fall to the temptations of South Florida’s dark side? If you believe he would, then consider whether Joe Philbin would want a player with Mathieu’s history on his football team.
He might be a changed man, and it would be great if he turns himself around and succeeds in the NFL, but the match just doesn’t work.
Tyrann Mathieu isn’t right for Miami, and Miami isn’t right for Tyrann Mathieu.