ST. PETERSBURG (CBSMiami) – 560 WQAM’s resident GM, “The Big O” Orlando Alzugaray, spent three days scouting draft prospects at the East-West Shrine Game.
According to Alzugaray, this year’s Shrine rosters feature a number of diamonds in the rough who could provide great value in the later rounds. While he scouted handful of quality players from Power Five schools like Miami, Oklahoma and Wisconsin, Alzugaray also got the chance to see players from seldom-watched programs like Fordham and Slippery Rock.
So, when we reach Day 3 of April’s NFL Draft, who might be dawning the Aqua and Orange of your Miami Dolphins?
Here are some prospects who really stand out:
Jeff Badet – Wide Receiver – Oklahoma. “6 feet, 178 lbs. Has good hands, ran his routes well and really stood out in West team practices.” Keep your eyes on Badet as a depth pick for Miami at receiver, especially if they cannot come to terms with Jarvis Landry in free agency.
Chase Edmonds – Running Back – Fordham. “Kid is a stud,” Big O says. “He was arguably the best player at the entire Shrine game from the practices we saw. A running back Miami could look to in the later rounds to develop here.” Miami needs depth behind Kenyan Drake, and Edmonds could help in a big way.
Justin Jackson – Running Back – Northwestern. “He’s done a nice job catching the football. He’s smooth. He can block. He’s got decent size. I like him a lot.”
Big O says he has “no love for the quarterbacks” on these rosters. In other words, if the Dolphins pull the trigger on a QB in the draft, it should be someone projected in the early rounds, and not someone at the East-West game.
On defense, Alzugaray says the following two prospects are players the Dolphins should really look at.
Justin Lawler – Defensive End – SMU. “Good 4-3 end who’s playing with a lot of energy. He’s got a great frame at 6’4” but needs to build his body a bit more.”
Chris Worley – Linebacker – Ohio State. “He may fall to the late rounds of the draft and could be a great project for the Miami Dolphins. He can help address a hole.” If 2017 taught us anything, it’s that the Dolphins need more, quality, linebackers.
Alzugaray noted to me that while the Dolphins did not send GM Chris Grier to the East-West Shrine Game, they were well represented by team scouts. The team to send the most scouts to St. Pete were the Saskatchewan Rough Riders of the CFL, who flew out their entire staff.
Players who stand out this week can still earn invites to next week’s Senior Bowl. The majority of the players at the East-West Shrine Game will be late round picks or undrafted free agents, but you never know when the next Cinderella story could emerge.
Jimmy Garoppolo played in the 2014 East-West game, was then invited to the Senior Bowl, and ended up becoming a second round pick.
For a full rundown of Alzugaray’s East-West Shrine experience, listen to Wednesday’s Big O Show Podcast at the top of this page.
Tomorrow, we’ll examine the prospects from the State of Florida.