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The Dolphins, looking for cornerback help, have invited Tulane cornerback Donnie Lewis to team headquarters for a pre-draft visit, according to a Dolphins source.
Meanwhile, Deandre Baker - one of the draft’s best cornerbacks - will be at the Dolphins’ facility on Friday.
Lewis, 6-0, had three interceptions (including one returned for a touchdown) and 15 passes defended last season. The 15 passes defended ranked third nationally last season.
He has seven interceptions, 37 passes defended and two fumble recoveries in his four-year career.
He played slot cornerback, boundary cornerback and some safety last season, and the Dolphins love players with that type of versatility.
Lewis will be one of a maximum 30 players invited to Dolphins offices before the draft. The Dolphins never announce their visits.
The Cleveland Browns recently invited him for a “30” visit as well.
Draftblaster.com projects Lewis to be selected in the final three rounds and calls him an “extremely versatile defensive back that has played all over the secondary against receivers of all shapes and sizes. Has 4 years of starting experience, and has been productive throughout his college career. Sticks to receivers whether they are small and twitchy, or bigger and more physical. Potential sleeper in the upcoming draft.”
Lewis impressed NFL people during practices before the East West Shrine game, displaying a fluidity in and out of breaks. But during practices for that game, he sustained a Jones fracture in his left foot, which is a break between the base and middle part of the fifth metatarsal. So this visit will allow the Dolphins medical staff to examine him.
The Dolphins are searching for a handful of cornerbacks in this draft process who can compete with Eric Rowe, Cordrea Tankersley, Jalen Davis, Tory McTyer and Cornell Armstrong for roster spots alongside Xavien Howard and Bobby McCain.
▪ The Dolphins will audition a bunch of UM, FIU and FAU players during their annual pre-draft local day on Friday.
Also attending: many prospects who attended high school in Dade, Broward or Palm Beach counties.
Among the highest-regarded of those visitors: Georgia’s Baker, a potential first- or second-round pick who attended Miami Northwestern.
Baker was first-team All SEC last season and had two interceptions and 10 pass breakups.
NFL.com’s Lance Zierlein said Baker is a “pesky press corner who has proven he can thrive against man-to-man challenges in a competitive conference. Baker isn’t a burner, but has good play speed and the foot quickness and pattern recognition to stay tight in his coverage.
“The biggest issue teams might have with Baker is determining whether or not he can give up 30-plus pounds against bigger, outside receivers and still hold up. While there might be some matchup concerns at times, his ball skills, talent and competitive nature should overcome his smaller frame.”