With the 155th selection in the NFL draft, the Dolphins went back to adding to the offense by selecting Georgia tight end Arthur Lynch.
New #Dolphins rookie TE Arthur Lynch says he models his game after Heath Miller and Zack Miller.— James Walker (@JamesWalkerNFL) May 10, 2014
Lynch is the second receiving option added to the roster from the SEC in the 2014 draft, following Miami's earlier selection of LSU receiver Jarvis Landry.
I went to high school with Arthur Lynch. Very high character person. Clearly something Hickey is looking for this year. #Dolphins # NFLDraft— Andrew Tornetta (@AndrewTornetta) May 10, 2014
To start, Lynch is known as a terrific leader in the locker room and a tremendous worker. He clearly cares about his craft and loves the game of football. For a locker room that had internal destruction in 2013, Lynch will be part of the solution to building a positive environment in 2014.
Lynch has great size and strength for an in-line tight end, standing over 6’4” and weighing in at 258 pounds. He’s strong at the point of contact, using leverage well to shove defenders to the second level of the defense. He’ll often line up as the strong-side tight end, allowing budding star Charles Clay to be moved around and challenge the defense.
According to Pro Football Focus (subscription required), the Dolphins had two of the worst blocking tight ends in the NFL in 2013, with Clay and rookie Dion Sims. The other tight end, Michael Egnew, was used as a fullback and receiver because of his inability to do anything at even an average level as a tight end.
Quite frankly, Lynch brings competence to the position, and he will be able to get on the field early and often as a rookie because of it.
As a receiver, Lynch is a reliable underneath route-runner due to his quickness and great hands. With 10” hands, he rarely drops accurate passes, which is another skill Miami continues to address in this class.
His movement is so efficient; it minimizes his lack of great athleticism. Body control is a valuable skill to have when running sideline routes, and he has consistently shown great spatial awareness and the ability to catch difficult passes.
Lynch will never be mistaken as an elite tight end or athletic mismatch. He’s more of an irritant for defenses, as he will make a few receptions a game, moving the chains on third downs and sealing blocks on running plays.
He doesn’t produce yards after catch because he doesn’t get much separation when running routes. He also has to show better effort at times, instead of just letting the defender bring him down.
His quarterback will have to throw accurate passes to him because he isn’t a quick-twitch athlete. That gives Ryan Tannehill a smaller window to throw to, which is something he’s still developing.
Overall potential is considered low because of his athleticism. He’s no more than a solid No. 2 tight end on a good team. He might have a 10-year career in the NFL, but he’ll never be considered as more than a nice complementary piece.
Lynch compensates well enough for his athletic traits to become a long-time NFL player. He brings toughness to the tight end position, which Miami desperately needs. As a blocker, the Dolphins are getting a big asset. He will greatly assist the run game for Miami, and that can open things up in the passing game.
Considering Lynch received a fourth- to fifth-round grade from Bleacher Report featured columnist Ryan McCrystal, Miami received a good value for their first fifth-round pick.
All combine results and height/weight information courtesy of NFL.com's results tracker.
Ian Wharton covers the NFL draft for Bleacher Report, specifically focusing on defensive backs. He also covers the Miami Dolphins for DraftMecca.com and FinDepth.com. You can follow and interact with Ian on Twitter: @NFLFilmStudy.