Dolphins’ Pre-Draft Position Breakdown: Tight Ends
With the NFL Draft less than three weeks away, it won’t be long before the Miami Dolphins are “on the clock”. After a 10-6 season that saw the team reach the playoffs for the first time since 2008, the Dolphins are looking to add pieces to help them get back there.
As the 2017 NFL Draft in Philadelphia nears, we continue a series that takes a look at each position for the Dolphins and how that might affect what Miami does in the draft. The draft will be held from April 27-29.
On Wednesday, we looked at one group of pass-catchers. Now, we move to another: tight ends.
Dolphins’ Picks by Round
Round 1: No. 22
Round 2: No. 54
Round 3: No. 97 (Compensatory)
Round 5: No. 166, No. 178 (Compensatory) and No. 184 (Compensatory)
Round 7: No. 223 (from Los Angeles)
Projected Starter(s): Julius Thomas
With Jordan Cameron and Dion Sims gone, the Dolphins addressed the need at the position by acquiring Julius Thomas in a trade with the Jacksonville Jaguars. A big addition, Thomas will be reunited with Dolphins’ head coach Adam Gase, who was his offensive coordinator in Denver in 2013 and 2014. In each of those two seasons, Thomas made the Pro Bowl. In two seasons with Jacksonville, Thomas caught 76 passes for 736 yards and nine touchdowns.
Notable Depth: Anthony Fasano
Another offseason acquisition, the Dolphins brought Anthony Fasano back for a second stint with the team. Fasano was in Miami from 2008-12 and caught 23 touchdowns in that span. More advanced in age, Fasano hasn’t been as productive as a receiver, but is still a competent blocker at the position.
Last Three Picks at Position
Thomas Duarte: Round 7, No. 231 overall in 2016
Arthur Lynch: Round 5, No. 155 overall in 2014
Dion Sims: Round 4, No. 106 overall in 2013
Draft Probability: Moderate to High
Despite acquiring two big names in free agency this year, tight end is a position that the Dolphins could pursue in the draft. Fasano is 32 years old and some have speculated that Thomas’ time as an elite tight end has passed. The other two tight ends on the roster — Chris Pantale and Thomas Duarte — have yet to record an NFL catch.
Mike Ferguson is a sports writer and reporter for several publications and the Pro Football Spot lead writer for the Miami Dolphins. Follow Mike on Twitter @MikeWFerguson