The Miami Dolphins made six of their seven draft picks available to the media on Friday and this is the quickie reaction from the hour-long event:
It seems team culture is catching around this organization and so veterans have reached out to rookies to welcome them and offer help to them following the draft.
Defensive end Charles Harris said defensive end Cameron Wake reached out to him. defensive tackles Vincent Taylor and Davon Godchaux said Ndamukong Suh texted and called.
“He was very friendly,” Godchaux said of Suh. “I was surprised.”
Never miss a local story.
Interestingly, the Dolphins did not draft a quarterback but quarterback Ryan Tannehill called numerous draft picks to welcome them to the team.
“He’s a leader on this team,” Godchaux said, adding he wasn’t surprised a player outside his position group called him.
Adam Gase, speaking for the first time since the NFL annual meeting in March, mentioned Tannehill prominently during his 19-minute press availability.
The coach talked about Tannehill’s attitude and leadership in the building in glowing terms. And this:
“He’s one of the reasons we’re taking the next step,” Gase said of Tannehill, who is reportedly (my report, actually) healed from his severe knee injury of last December.
Harris said he’s ready to do whatever the Dolphins ask to improve. Indeed, that was a message from multiple rookies, including Cordrea Tankersley, who mentioned he wants to improve his technique.
One thing Harris probably doesn’t worry a ton about improving is his first step off the ball.
“I have the best first step you can see,” Harris said.
Watch the tape. He is pretty impressive off the launch.
Harris will wear No. 90 for Miami as No. 91, his college number, is already assigned to Cameron Wake.
You have to like the confidence of a lot of these rookies. They are all soft-spoken in press availabilities but every once in a while a little edge peeks through their words.
Raekwon McMillan, who has signed his four-year contract making him the second rookie to do so, per Barry Jackson, spoke of his frustration being drafted with the No. 54 overall pick in the draft.
“In my mind, I’m the best linebacker in the nation,” McMillan said.
Indeed, McMillan was so frustrated waiting until the second day of the draft, he said he accidentally hung up on the Dolphins when they called with the news he was their selection.
“My heart dropped because I thought I lost my chance to get drafted,” McMillan said.
The linebacker said as the draft went forward he got “madder and madder” his name wasn’t being called.
Good. I hope he takes that anger and channels it to great play on the field against all the teams that passed on him. The AFC East has been dominated for 17 seasons by a player who felt that way about being drafted in the sixth round of the 2000 draft.
By the way, after McMillan hung up on them the first time, the Dolphins did call back to get their player.
Vincent Taylor spoke emotionally about his experienced being a middle school kid living in New Orleans when Hurricane Katrina hit.
I’ve been through hurricanes in South Florida, including Andrew. It is a nightmare so I can sympathize.
“It was a traumatic experience experience,” Taylor said. “I saw dead bodies floating in the streets. We had no food or water. It was bad.”
The eye test?
Cordrea Tankerley seemed thicker to me than I imagined. He’s a 6-1 and 200 pounder but he didn’t look thin at all. He wasn’t ripped that I could tell, but he wasn’t thin.
McMillan, meanwhile, seemed a little narrow to me. So did Harris.
All three future defensive stalwarts -- if you believe the Dolphins’ hopes -- have a lot of work to do in the weight room. They look like college players at this point.
That will change under strength coach Dave Puloka.
A guy who more than passes the eye test is fifth-round pick Isaac Asiata. He looks the part of an NFL guard.
Asiata is perhaps the most mature of all the rookies. He’s 25. He’s married.
And he’s matured since he was a 19-year-old freshman at Utah.
“I was a punk kid,” Asiata said. “I rubbed a lot of the veterans the wrong way.”
Asiata says he changed with age and following his two-year Mormon mission.
Just a personal observation: Asiata has charisma. He’s got spark.
Follow Armando Salguero on Twitter @ArmandoSalguero