Dolphins Draft Day 3 Preview

The Miami Dolphins have three picks heading into the final four rounds of the 2021 NFL draft
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More than half of the 2021 NFL draft remains heading into Day 3 of the proceedings, but it's considerably less than that for the Miami Dolphins.

The Dolphins had only three picks remaining over the final four rounds after a series of trades dating back to 2019, with one pick in Round 5 and two in Round 7.

But that doesn't mean they can't do things to continue upgrading the roster, beyond trying to land a gem in the fifth or seventh round — or even the fourth or sixth if they decide to make more deals.

But how about making a trade for a veteran player on the third day of the draft.

It's not like it hasn't happened before. In fact, the Dolphins are riding a two-year streak of drafts where they traded for a veteran player.

On Day 3 of the 2020 draft, they acquired running back Matt Breida from the San Francisco 49ers in exchange for a fifth-round pick. And, of course, in 2019 it was the acquisition of quarterback Josh Rosen from the Arizona Cardinals for a second-round pick that year and a fifth-round pick in 2020.

So who's to say the Dolphins don't make another trade for a veteran running back on this day, given that the circumstances are similar to last year after missing out on (or bypassing) the top group of prospects at the position.

We have seen the name of Kareem Hunt on the Twitterverse as somebody that maybe the Dolphins would try to acquire and that would be a great acquisition, except for one minor detail.

As with so many things on Twitter, the idea was thrown out without really looking at the other side. Simply put, why would the Browns want to make that deal? Cleveland has a roster that looks goo enough to compete for the Super Bowl (remember how close the Browns were to defeating K.C. in the playoffs last year) and a clear strength is the 1-2 running back punch of Nick Chubb and Hunt.

Again, why would Cleveland want to do this?

Maybe Melvin Gordon of the Broncos might look like a more realistic trade possibility after Denver jumped over the Dolphins by moving up five spots in the second round and take Javonte Williams at number 35.

But the Broncos lost Phillip Lindsay as a free agent in the offseason and trading Gordon would hurt their depth at running back. Trading him would save Denver more than $6 million in cap space for 2021, but then the question becomes whether that's a cap charge the Dolphins would want to absorb, particularly since Gordon is scheduled to become a free agent next offseason.

So, the short answer on this is that it doesn't really make logical sense from either side.

If the Dolphins really felt an urgent need to address the running back position, they simply could have moved up in the second round — particularly in light of what Denver gave up to move from 40 to 35 — swapping a fourth-round pick for a sixth.

But, as we said, based on recent history, there's a 50-50 chance there will be a trade involving a veteran player on Day 3 because the Dolphins have made five such trades over the past 11 drafts.

2020 — Acquired RB Matt Breida from the 49ers

2019 — Acquired QB Josh Rosen from Arizona

2016 — Traded CB Jamar Taylor to Cleveland

2013 — Traded WR Davone Bess to Cleveland

2010 — Acquired LB Tim Dobbins from San Diego (note, Dobbins was a throw-in in a deal where the Dolphins moved down from 12 to 28 in the first round)

In terms of who the Dolphins could draft on Day 3, trying to predict when their first pick will be well into the day is just not realistic.

What we can provide is a rundown of the top remaining prospects, by position, according to NFL Draft Bible:

QB — Jamie Newman (Georgia), Ian Book (Notre Dame)

RB — Michael Carter (North Carolina), Kenneth Gainwell (Memphis), Jaret Patterson (Buffalo), Khalil Herbert (Virginia Tech), Kylin Hill (Mississippi State), Rhamondre Stevenson (Oklahoma)

WR — Tylan Wallace (Oklahoma State), Josh Imatorbhebhe (Illinois), Austin Watkins (UAB), Amon'Ra St. Brown (USC)

TE — Brevin Jordan (Miami), Zach Davidson (Central Missouri)

OL — T James Hudson (Cincinnati), G Trey Smith (Tennessee), T D'Ante Smith (East Carolina)

DL — Cameron Sample (Tulane), Jay Tufele (USC), Tyler Shelvin (LSU), Daviyon Nixon (Iowa), Marvin Wilson (Florida State)

EDGE — Quincy Roche (Miami), Rashad Weaver (Pittsburgh), Elerson Smith (Northern Iowa), Chris Rumph II (Duke), Hamilcar Rasheed Jr. (Oregon State), Justin Hilliard (Ohio State)

LB — Jabril Cox (LSU), JaCoby Stevens (LSU), Garrett Wallow (TCU), Dylan Moses (Alabama), K.J. Britt (Auburn)

DB — S Jamar Johnson (Indiana), CB Camryn Bynum (California), CB Shaun Wade (Ohio State), CB Bryan Mills (N.C. Central), S Tyree Gillespie (Missouri)