The Miami Dolphins’ rookie draft this year will be quite interesting. In prior seasons, Dolphins fans could look forward to a slew of fresh and exciting rookies entering Hard Rock Stadium. That’s not the case this year. In reality, there isn’t much to be excited about in the 2023 NFL Draft if you’re a Miami fan. Here we’ll look at the three best players for the Miami Dolphins to target with their 2023 NFL Draft second-round pick.
Keep in mind that Dolphins general manager Chris Grier has been extremely aggressive in acquiring proven talent for the team. He has the belief that there is a “win-now” window while quarterback Tua Tagovailoa is on his rookie deal. Grier’s aggressive moves include trading for Jalen Ramsey, Tyreek Hill, and Bradley Chubb, as well as tampering with Tom Brady and Sean Payton. Of course, that last one resulted in the Dolphins having the least amount of draft capital in the league. Remember that the Dolphins possess only four picks in the upcoming draft, with none on Day 1 and two each on Days 2 and 3. It’s clear that Miami has prioritized acquiring proven talent rather than gambling on draft picks.
Miami had originally held two first-round picks in the 2023 draft but lost their own pick due to tampering with Brady and Payton. They also traded the remaining pick to the Denver Broncos in exchange for Bradley Chubb. The Dolphins have their original pick in Round 2 and acquired an additional third-round pick from the New England Patriots in exchange for DeVante Parker. However, they also traded that pick to the Los Angeles Rams in exchange for Ramsey.
Now let’s look at the three best players for the Dolphins to target in the 2023 NFL Draft second round.
3. Kenny McIntosh
The Dolphins heavily rely on Tua Tagovailoa’s pre-snap reads to throw to spots where receivers Tyreek Hill or Jaylen Waddle will catch the ball in stride. A true dual-threat running back like Kenny McIntosh can give Tua a dangerous safety net if defenses disrupt the timing of their routes. This is because of McIntosh’s experience in catching the ball out of the backfield and pre-snap motions. Although his speed isn’t impressive, his receiving ability makes him a third-down weapon. Right now McIntosh could be a Day 2 or a Day 3 pick. Take note that his 4.62 40-yard time wasn’t impressive. However, his quickness and middle-of-the-pack 10-yard split at 1.54 seconds show potential.
2. Zach Charbonnet
The Dolphins currently have no running backs signed for next season, so they may choose to use a draft pick to secure a long-term option. While they could opt to re-sign Raheem Mostert or Jeff Wilson, their performance last season indicated the need for a running back who can command the defense’s attention. Zach Charbonnet is a potential candidate who could bring balance to Miami’s pass-heavy offense. This is due to his raw power, excellent contact balance, superb vision, and evasive maneuvers. His only weakness is a lack of breakaway speed. However, this could be remedied by a solid 40-yard dash time.
Zach Charbonnet punches it in to give UCLA the lead pic.twitter.com/11rKqC4mnS
— ESPN (@espn) October 1, 2022
At the combine, Charbonnet’s performance reinforced his status as a top-5 running back in the 2023 class. His 4.53 40-yard dash time was as expected. However, his long strides allowed him to accelerate as he runs. Despite his strength, he only managed 18 bench press reps. That was slightly surprising. Nevertheless, he remains a probable Day 2 pick with the potential to start at the next level.
1. John Micheal Schmitz
Illinois native John Micheal Schmitz seized the starting center position for the Golden Gophers in 2019 and held onto it for four years. He also accumulated 35 starts. He was recognized as a 2022 AP First Team All-American and was included in the All-Big Ten First Team by the conference’s coaches and media. Schmitz’s exceptional performance in the 2023 Senior Bowl demonstrated that he is one of the top senior offensive line prospects. Although he was not highly touted during the recruiting process, his wrestling background from high school has proven valuable for an interior offensive lineman.
Keep in mind that Schmitz’s entire collegiate career has been at center. If he were to be drafted by the Dolphins, he would be best utilized in that position. Schmitz’s versatility in successfully blocking both man and zone run concepts makes him an excellent fit for Miami’s scheme. Moreover, his extensive starting experience makes him an attractive prospect for the Dolphins. This is a team that has struggled to develop offensive linemen in recent years. While incumbent starter Connor Williams had a stellar season as a center last year, he does have experience at left guard. This means that Schmitz’s potential as a well-developed center prospect actually makes him a desirable addition to Miami’s offensive line.
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