NFL teams are permitted to bring as many as 30 non-local players to their headquarters for visits, and Miami doesn’t use these as smoke screens. If they bring a player here, there’s genuine interest in the player or learning more about him.
The Dolphins, determined to conceal this type of information, neither announce nor confirm draft visits.
A large chunk — more than a half dozen of the team’s draft picks the past two years — took pre-draft visits to the Dolphins, but a handful — including Charles Harris — did not.
With those caveats, we’re told these were among players who came to Dolphins headquarters on those prized “30” visits, which can include meetings, film work and medical checks but no on-field work:
▪ Oklahoma quarterback Baker Mayfield. Dolphins would love if he fell to No. 11 but don’t expect it to happen. And trading up would be awfully difficult.
▪ Wyoming quarterback Josh Allen. The arm strength and ideal NFL measurables appeal to Miami. A Dolphins source reiterated any of the top four quarterbacks would be appealing if they fall to 11.
▪ Washington State quarterback Luke Falk. The Pac-12’s career leader in several major categories would be a legitimate option on day two of the draft, when Miami picks 42nd and 73rd. Adam Gase likes the skill set.
▪ South Carolina tight end Hayden Hurst. A former minor-league baseball player with the Pirates, Hurst has transformed himself into a complete tight end, with 100 receptions over the past three seasons and just one dropped pass. But he’s already 24.
▪ South Dakota State tight end Dallas Goedert. Miami not only flew him to South Florida but did a private workout with him in South Dakota. Posted monster numbers the past two years — 164 catches for 2404 yard and 18 touchdowns. The Dolphins would love to emerge from the draft with either Hurst or Goedert as their starting tight end.
▪ San Diego State running back Rashaan Penny. Penny led all Division 1 running backs with 2248 yards rushing last season on 7.8 per carry, finished fifth in Heisman Trophy balloting and was a first-team All-American last season. The Dolphins really like him and flew him into Davie. But can they afford to use a second-day pick on a running back? Seems unlikely.
▪ Georgia linebacker Roquan Smith (visit reported but unconfirmed). The Dolphins know they must emerge from this draft with a third starting linebacker, and they very much like both Smith and Virginia Tech’s Tremaine Edmunds as options at 11. “Roquan Smith should be a Pro Bowler very quickly,” ESPN’s Louis Riddick said.
▪ Alabama linebacker Rashaan Evans. Dolphins like the skill set and playmaking and he’s a strong possibility if they trade down several spots. “He’s a stud,” ESPN’s Todd McShay said.
▪ BYU linebacker Fred Warner. A second-day or early-third day playmaker with 32.5 tackles for loss, 6.5 sacks and seven interceptions over four seasons. ESPN's Mel Kiper has been raving about him.
▪ Iowa cornerback Josh Jackson. Led the nation with eight interceptions (including two for touchdowns) and an option if available when Miami picks 42nd in the second round.
▪ Ohio State cornerback Denzel Ward. Ward and Alabama corner/safety Minkah Fitzpatrick are considered the draft’s top cornerbacks and Miami — believing it still needs quality corners — would strongly consider Ward if he slips to 11th. “Ward is the best true corner in this class,” Kiper said.
▪ Louisville cornerback Jaire Alexander. Missed half of last season with leg and hand injuries but had five interceptions the year before. Kiper has him rising to the high teens. “He can stay on you all over the field and he was one of the smoothest ones I saw at the Combine," an AFC defensive backs coach told NFL.com.
▪ Stanford safety Justin Reid: Likely goes somewhere between Miami’s first- and second-round picks. The Dolphins are very much open to upgrading at safety. “I expect Reid to make my all rookie team, wherever he ends up,” Kiper said.
▪ At least five offensive linemen: UCLA tackle Kolton Miller, TCU guard Matt Pryor, Auburn tackle Braden Smith, Purdue tackle Dave Steinmetz (not confirmed) and Temple tackle Cole Boozer. Miller is the best prospect of the group. Miami’s top seven linemen are seemingly set, but the Dolphins would like a developmental prospect to challenge Isaac Asiata and others for a roster spot.
The Dolphins can invite players who went to high school or college in South Florida for workouts at their facility, and it doesn’t count against those 30 visits.
Louisville quarterback Lamar Jackson, Georgia running back Sony Michel and all the top UM prospects were among that group. Agent Drew Rosenhaus predicts the Dolphins will draft Jackson, who doesn’t have an agent.