This new mailbag features your questions and my answers on Dolphins draft possibilities, some DeVonta Smith takes, and the current wide receiver corps.
So here we go.
From Ken Dasher (@kdash65):
It seems like Pitts is a more rare prospect at his position than anyone else who may be there at 6. Good tackles and receivers come out every year, but a TE like him is harder to find. That's why I lean towards him. Agree?
Agree 100 percent. I like the idea of filling needs in every draft, but the bigger focus in my mind always should be on finding the best players possible, accumulate as much talent as you can, and then figure out how to make it work — because things always happen. And there's no question that Pitts is the kind of tight end talent who comes along very rarely, while star receivers like Chase, Waddle, Smith, whoever else pretty much come around every year. So, absolutely, I'm with you.
From Cliffy Mac (@mclifford36):
You’re Chris Grier. Pitts and Chase get selected and are off the board before 6. Who are you taking?
First thing I do is work the phones to see if I can pick a third-round pick, even pushing my luck to see if I can get a second, from either Carolina or Denver so they can get a quarterback at 6 and then revisit what's available at 8 or 9. If the Dolphins stay at 6 and Chase and Pitts are gone, I think maybe the wise move would be Penei Sewell, the tackle from Oregon. I'm not so sure he shouldn't be the choice even if Chase is available at 6.
From Mark Schoninger (@SchoningerMark):
Do the dolphins have an advantage in obtaining minority free agents because they have a minority head coach and general manager?
I can't speak for minority free agents because I'm not a minority and I'm not a free agent, but what I would say if I think financial considerations and playing time opportunity always would be the first two priorities for minority free agents looking for a new team.
From Scoop There it is (@LukeMichael22):
What is wrong with Patrick Surtain II and Kwitty Paye with first 2 picks. And why are we sleeping on Trey Sermon in, say, RD 4?
Second part first, if the Dolphins haven't taken a running back before Round 4 and Sermon is on the board, they absolutely should jump all over him. But I suspect neither scenario will play out. As for Surtain and Paye for the first two picks, both would be good additions for the defense, but I don't think either would represent good value at the No. 6 pick.
From Ryan (@LurieRyan):
I’m not sure any of the rookie WR’s start in front of a healthy Parker, Preston and Wilson? Not a lot of history of great rookie performances from the WR position. If we want to win now, do we really draft a WR early?
It's a valid point you bring up about rookie wide receivers, though Justin Jefferson sure proved that theory wrong last year. The bigger issue here is that the Dolphins do want to win now but also keep building a roster to compete year in and year out. And it's also fair to question how much you can depend on Parker and Williams based on their injury issues of recent years. The idea of taking a wide receiver in the first round at 6 is more about landing an impact player for years to come than filling an immediate need.
From Ralph R. Lucarella (@lucarella_r):
Pitts and Chase not there at 6, your choice among Smith, Sewell and Waddle?
Man, that's a tough call for me, but I think I might be inclined to go with Sewell because landing a blue-chip offensive tackle would serve the Dolphins better in the long term. And, yes, I understand the Dolphins drafted Austin Jackson and Robert Hunt just last year, but many draft analysts projected that Hunt had a brighter future in the NFL at guard than tackle.
From Hockey Rob (@HockeyRobThough):
What is yours take on the following mind-set: “DeVonta Smith is a great WR, just not with the 6th pick”?
If I'm going to be honest, that is exactly how I'm feeling. I know how great Smith was at Alabama and I know his stature was not an issue in college, but the idea of drafting a 6-foot-1, 170-pound wide receiver with the sixth overall pick just doesn't sit right with me because of the durability concerns. And, yes, I've heard the comparisons to Marvin Harrison, but Harrison's measurements at the combine were a hair under 6 feet and 181 pounds. There really isn't much of a precedent for a wide receiver as lean and light as Smith, and can't help but think that there's a reason for that. I'm also not convinced from a pure ability standpoint he'll be a better NFL wide receiver than Ja'Marr Chase or Jaylen Waddle. Now, if Smith is there at 18, that's a different story. But Smith at 6 is a little risky for my taste.