As we head into the homestretch to the 2021 NFL Draft, it's a good time to revisit the Miami Dolphins draft history at every position.
In this draft series, we'll break down each position with number of picks since the start of the "common draft" in 1967, first-round selections, hits and misses, and any trends that might apply.
We continue with the defensive backs (as always, hits and misses are determined by gauging production versus draft position):
DOLPHINS DEFENSIVE BACK DRAFT HISTORY
Number of picks: 98
Number of first-round picks: 8 (CB Don McNeal, 1980; S Louis Oliver, 1989; CB Troy Vincent, 1992; CB Jamar Fletcher, 2001; S/CB Jason Allen, 2006; CB Vontae Davis, 2009; S Minkah Fitzpatrick, 2018; CB Noah Igbinoghene, 2020)
Hits: S Dick Anderson (Round 3, 1968), S/CB Tim Foley (Round 3, 1970), CB Curtis Johnson (Round 4, 1970), S Jake Scott (Round 7, 1970), S Glenn Blackwood (Round 8, 1979), CB William Judson (Round 8, 1981), CB Troy Vincent (Round 1, 1992), S Shawn Wooden (Round 6, 1996), CB Sam Madison (Round 2, 1997), CB Patrick Surtain (Round 2, 1998), S Yeremiah Bell (Round 6, 2003), S Reshad Jones (Round 5, 2010), S Bobby McCain (Round 5, 2015), CB Xavien Howard (Round 2, 2016)
Misses: CB Jeris White (Round 2, 1974), CB Dorian Brew (Round 3, 1996), CB Ben Kelly (Round 3, 2000), CB Jamar Fletcher (Round 3, 2001), S/CB Jason Allen (Round 1, 2006), CB Jamar Taylor (Round 2, 2013), CB Cordrea Tankersley (Round 3, 2017)
Trends: While the results haven't always been there, we certainly can't complain about the Dolphins neglecting the secondary in the draft in recent years. They have selected seven defensive backs in the first three rounds over the past eight drafts, including Noah Igbinoghene and Brandon Jones last year.
HOW THE DOLPHINS HAVE DONE
While it's always easier to just look at the misses, it's pretty clear the Dolphins have done very well when it comes to drafting defensive backs.
Getting the starting secondary for the Super Bowl teams of the 1970s all through the draft in a span of three years (1968-70) is borderline genius work.
Then there was the back-to-back years taking Sam Madison and Patrick Surtain, giving the Dolphins their best cornerback tandem ever.
More recently, the Dolphins got steals in the fifth round with Reshad Jones and Bobby McCain and then landed Howard in Round 2 after moving up four spots to get him.
Of course, we have to mention the first-round flops, none bigger than Jamar Fletcher, whose selection was only made more painful by the incredible NFL career of Drew Brees who was taken six picks later and really should have been the Dolphins' selection.
We also should point out we did not include Minkah Fitzpatrick in either the "hit" or "miss" category because he clearly is a very good player but just didn't play long enough for the Dolphins, and the same goes for Vontae Davis, who actually became a good starter for the Dolphins before they traded him to Indianapolis and he became a Pro Bowl player.
ALSO IN THIS SERIES