Dolphins' Team Needs in 2022 NFL Draft

Joe Tansey@JTansey90Featured ColumnistApril 6, 2022

Dolphins' Team Needs in 2022 NFL Draft

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    Rebecca Blackwell/Associated Press

    The Miami Dolphins will not feature in the 2022 NFL draft until the third round.

    In fact, the AFC East will not have its name called much over the three-day event since it is down to four selections in late April.

    Miami used the first-round pick it acquired from the San Francisco 49ers to trade for Tyreek Hill from the Kansas City Chiefs. The Dolphins also traded their second-round pick to Kansas City.

    The Dolphins will not be on the clock until the 102nd overall pick, but they can still find some value with their four selections. First-year head coach Mike McDaniel came to the franchise from San Francisco, who landed George Kittle, Elijah Mitchell and Jauan Jennings in the fifth round or later.

    McDaniel and his staff need to bank on some of the draft tips gained from his time in San Francisco to maximize the value of its one third-round pick, one fourth-round selection and two seventh-round choices.

Offensive Line

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    Miami made improving the offensive line one of its clear objectives in the offseason. That resulted in the signings of Terron Armstead and Connor Williams in free agency.

    Miami has one side of its offensive line locked up. It could use some help through the draft to fill depth on the right side.

    Liam Eichenberg and Robert Hunt are the returning starters on the offensive line, but there is not a ton of depth beneath them.

    Austin Jackson and Solomon Kindley were both chosen in the 2020 NFL draft, but they project as backups going into training camp. The Dolphins could look to that duo for offensive line depth or they could find a player that fits McDaniel's style more.

    McDaniel comes from a system in which offensive linemen played a vital role because of how often San Francisco ran the ball. Miami could have a similar approach with Chase Edmonds, Raheem Mostert and Myles Gaskin in the backfield.

    With that in mind, the Dolphins could go after an offensive lineman with a strong run-blocking grade with either their third- or fourth-round selection.

Wide Receiver

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    Doug Murray/Associated Press

    The Tyreek Hill trade gave Miami a top-tier receiver to partner with Jaylen Waddle.

    Waddle and Hill will earn a majority of the targets from Tua Tagovailoa, but the Dolphins should not be content with their overall wide receiver room. Cedrick Wilson and Preston Williams are the two depth pieces left at the position after DeVante Parker was shipped to the New England Patriots.

    Miami could use a physical possession-based receiver to complement the speed of Waddle and Hill. That type of player may be around at No. 102 or No. 125.

    The Dolphins do not have many opportunities to bolster the depth behind Waddle and Hill, but they should use one of their first two selections on the position.

    The successful squads in the AFC proved that the deeper wide receiver group, the better when it comes to attacking the postseason.

    The Kansas City Chiefs, Cincinnati Bengals and Buffalo Bills all thrived with that approach, and it is something Miami should try to mimic as it builds its roster under McDaniel.

Defensive Line

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    Tyler Kaufman/Associated Press

    Most of Miami's offseason focus centered around Tagovailoa.

    The Dolphins traded for Hill, added protection in free agency and kept Mike Gesicki at tight end.

    The improvements are impressive, but the Dolphins still need to play defense against some of the toughest offensive units in the NFL.

    Miami could use some extra pass-rushing help behind Emmanuel Ogbah to combat the Buffalo Bills and New England Patriots in divisional play.

    Getting to the quarterback will be a priority in the non-divisional games as well. The AFC and NFC North divisions are on Miami's schedule this season.

    The containment of Lamar Jackson, Joe Burrow, Aaron Rodgers and others will be vital to keeping them off the field and allowing Tagovailoa as many opportunities as possible to connect with Waddle and Hill.