The NFL Draft has come and gone.
The players have picked their numbers.
Contracts haven’t been signed yet, but every team has a new crop of players that represent the future of their respective franchises – for the good or for the bad.
Just as everyone had an opinion about what the Dolphins should have done before and during the draft, you know everyone and their mom will have a judgment on how Miami did in the draft.
The most accepted and grossly overdone method of critiquing a team’s draft class is to “grade” the team. Giving the team a report card as if they will display it on the family refrigerator.
It borders on foolish to think that anyone can truly say a team had a “good draft” or a “bad draft” or a grade them as having a “B-plus” draft before a single player selected has even taken a rep in mini-camp.
Talk about how good this year’s draft class five years from now – after they play out their first contracts. Can’t wait that long, give them three seasons. At the very least, let them play in a preseason game first.
Nonetheless, here’s a look at what the pundits around the country are saying about Miami’s haul from the 2017 draft.
Miami Dolphins 2017 Draft Class
Round One – Pick 22: Charles Harris, DE, Missouri
Round Two – Pick 54: Raekwon McMillan, LB, Ohio State
Round Five – Pick 97: Cordrea Tankersley, CB, Clemson
Round Five – Pick 164: Isaac Asiata, G, Utah
Round Five – Pick 178: Davon Godchaux, DT, LSU
Round Six – Pick 194: Vincent Taylor, DT, Oklahoma State
Round Seven – Pick 237: Isaiah Ford, WR, Virginia Tech
Mel Kiper, Jr., ESPN
“Charles Harris’ dropping a few spots and falling into the Dolphins’ lap helps them a bit, but I thought he was better suited to go to a 3-4 team. He might be a situational pass-rusher early in his career as he bulks up from his 6-foot-3, 253-pound frame. He needs to improve playing against the run, and that should come in time. Miami filled a big need with tackling machine Raekwon McMillan. I was surprised he went off the board before Zach Cunningham, however.
Cordrea Tankersley is a big corner (6-1, 199) who had nine career interceptions. The Dolphins traded up for Isaac Asiata, and I gave him an undrafted grade. If they wanted a guard who could play immediately, they could have taken Forrest Lamp in Round 1. Asiata isn’t that guy. Davon Godchaux, who has some off-field concerns, and Vincent Taylor will provide depth along the interior of the defensive line.”
Todd McShay, ESPN
“Harris came off the board right around where we had him ranked (No. 18). There was a lot of pre-draft chatter about him going higher (between 10-20), and the Dolphins did well to stand pat and let Harris drop to them instead of trading up. This was a position Miami needed to address with Cameron Wake now 35 years old. I don’t know if Harris is going to be an immediate starter, but he has a lot of tools to be molded. It will be good for his development to be around a guy like Wake, who keeps himself in great shape. Isaac Asiata was also a good value for the Dolphins in the fifth round.”
Dan Kadar, SB Nation
“The Dolphins are a team that came into the draft understanding their needs. Miami didn’t get fancy and trade around. The team just went down its needs list and checked each one off. That started in the first round with pass rusher Charles Harris. He might begin his career as a rush specialist, but he fits on a team that added run-stopping specialist William Hayes.
On the second day of the draft, the Dolphins continued on defense, getting linebacker Raekwon McMillan of Ohio State and cornerback Cordrea Tankersley of Clemson. Both could develop into starters. My grade would be higher if they picked up an interior offensive lineman earlier in the draft, but they still found one in Utah’s Isaac Asiata in the fifth round. Defensive linemen Davon Godchaux and Vincent Taylor provide solid depth.”
Chad Reuter, NFL.com
“Miami definitely needed to get younger in its pass rush, so seeing Harris on the board was a godsend. He’ll need to improve against the rush to be an all-around player on the edge, but the pick will still be very good if he can make an impact attacking the quarterback sooner than later. Finding a linebacker of Raekwon McMillan’s stature in the second round was a steal. Clemson’s Cordrea Tankersley has a chance to start in Year Two for the Dolphins, as well — he was an excellent pick. With Laremy Tunsil moving outside in 2017, the Dolphins found an immediate starting guard in Isaac Asiata in the fifth round. Godchaux bolstered the defensive line depth on Day 3.”
Dieter Kurtenbach, Fox Sports
“The Dolphins hit their needs. Charles Harris will contribute on the first day, and while Raekwon McMillan is a strange fit, he could be the linebacker the Dolphins need. Cordrea Tankersley might be the steal of this draft — him falling to the third round was crazy.”
Pete Prisco, CBS Sports
“The Dolphins did a nice job with their draft, landing pass rusher Charles Harris in the first round. He fills a need, and he’s a productive player. Linebacker Raekwon McMillan brings some speed to a group that needs it. Adding corner Cordrea Tankersley in the third round and guard Isaac Asiata are also good picks and fill needs. It was a good draft.”
Rob Rang, CBS Sports
“Defense was clearly the top priority for the Dolphins in this draft, and first year general manager Chris Grier did a nice job of stacking his board, getting terrific value with his seven selections. Top pick Charles Harris’ best football lies ahead of him after only joining the sport five years ago. The Dolphins added a classic glass-eating run-stuffing inside linebacker in Raekwon McMillan and a lanky press corner with excellent ball skills in Clemson’s Cordrea Tankersley on Day 2, both of whom project as starters early in their respective careers. Isaac Asiata, the reigning Morris Trophy Award winner as the top blocker in the Pac-12, will outplay his fifth-round grade. Fellow Day 3 strongmen Davon Godchaux and Vincent Taylor are similarly built run-stuffers but may be too alike to both make the final roster.”
Chris Burke, Sports Illustrated
“The Dolphins’ draft was as noteworthy for whom they passed up as the prospects they actually took. Charles Harris (No. 22 pick) gives them needed depth off the edge, but G/T Forrest Lamp was available there, as were LB Reuben Foster and multiple corners. Raekwon McMillan (No. 53) could be a very good, three-down linebacker, but Zach Cunningham went shortly thereafter to Houston. And Miami chose hit-or-miss CB Cordrea Tankersley (No. 97) over others at his position (i.e. Rasul Douglas) and multiple interior linemen. Frankly, their best pick relative to value might be fifth-round guard Isaac Asiata. He’s a road grader who can start as a rookie.”
Nate Davis, USA Today
“Seems like a decent, if not particularly noteworthy, group. Pass rusher Charles Harris (Round 1), LB Raekwon McMillan (2) and CB Cordrea Tankersley (3) all have upside along with attributes to their games that seem like worrisome flaws. Don’t be shocked if fifth-round G Isaac Asiata winds up playing the most as a rookie.”