In an enviable situation, Miami’s draft board for the 2021 NFL draft is loaded. After an overachieving 2020 season, the Miami Dolphins had an interesting offseason. After the surprising release of Kyle Van Noy after his first year in Miami, the Dolphins made a few key signings. They signed Will Fuller to a one-year 10.6 million dollar contract on a prove-it type deal. Fuller adds a developing receiving core that includes Devante Parker, Preston Williams, Lynn Bowden, Jr., and Jakeem Grant. The Dolphins also signed Jacoby Brissett to a one-year deal to back up the young Tua Tagovailoa, an insurance blanket in case any injury occurs.
Miami’s Draft Board at Sixth Overall in the 2021 NFL Draft
Earlier this offseason, the Dolphins had traded the third pick to the 49ers for the 12th pick for a 2022 third-round pick and two firsts in 2022 and 2023. Then, the Dolphins traded the 12th pick and a future 2022 first-rounder to the Eagles for the sixth pick and a fifth-round pick. The Dolphins traded back because they believe they already have their franchise quarterback in Tagovailoa and the 49ers are looking for a long-term solution at the quarterback position. The Dolphins were going to be able to draft a player on their draft board at three or six so they essentially gained a first-round pick while they can draft the player they wanted at three at six
Kyle Pitts needs no introduction to this list. He’s been on the top on teams’ draft boards all off-season (including Miami’s draft board) due to his pure athleticism and physicality. Pitts is gonna be a guy that can just flat-out high-point the football. This alone would be great for the Dolphins as this would give a target in the center of the field. This may allow for Miami to open up the playbook for Tagovailoa, allowing the offense to be less one-dimensional than last year. Pitts can be a matchup nightmare for defenses as he stands at 6’6” and runs a 4.44 40-time, closer to a wide receiver 40 than a tight end time.
Although Pitts is a great player, the Dolphins already have a good tight end in Mike Gesicki. Gesicki is not known as a run blocker and neither is Pitts. Pitts lined up outside last year for the Florida Gators, but if the Dolphins plan on playing him on the outside they should focus on drafting another guy outside.
Ja’marr Chase chose to bet on himself this offseason and he sat out the 2020 season. After winning the college football championship, Chase decided that he would let his tape speak for itself and sit out the season. Although he was a beast in 2019, he played with tons of NFL talent. Justin Jefferson became a star in the NFL and Joe Burrow had a great season up until his injury.
There is no question about Chase’s athletism. He’s a 21-year-old who is 6′ feet tall and he, also, can flat-out high-point the football. Chase’s catch radius is top of the class; add his ability to high-point the football and he is one of the top jump-ball receivers in the class. It’s no wonder he should be atop Miami’s draft board.
Chase would join a developing wide receiving corps, allowing him to grow with the young core of Preston Williams, Tua Tagovailoa, and a young backfield of Salvon Ahmed and Myles Gaskin. If the Dolphins are just looking for a dominant jump-ball receiver, Chase can be a day one starter that will give defensives nightmares.
Micah Parsons is the most compelling prospect in this year’s draft. He is a jack of all trades, master of none type of player. At Penn State, he played all over the field, which does not always translate great to the NFL. As recently as last year, Isaiah Simmons, last year, came into the draft as a positionless player. He struggled early on to find where he fit in the Arizona system.
I expect wherever Michah Parson gets drafted will have a similar situation. Parson is a pure athlete, yet he has trouble running zone coverage at Penn State. He also had an incident at Penn State that included a police report being filed for apparent bullying harassment. This character issue may cause him to fall down draft boards, making it hard to predict where he gets draft.