Dolphins GM Chris Grier agrees this needs to be a ‘great draft’
The Dolphins are determined to add a starting right tackle in this draft, and they quietly brought in at least three candidates in the past couple of weeks: Mississippi’s Greg Little, Oklahoma’s Bobby Evans and UF’s Jawaan Taylor.
The Taylor visit was previously reported here and elsewhere; the Dolphins hold him in high regard. But I’ve confirmed the Evans and Little visits, meaning we now know the identity of 25 of the Dolphins’ maximum 30 permitted prospects that were brought to team headquarters before last Wednesday’s deadline to conduct those visits.
Coincidentally, Evans and Little were high school teammates in Allen, Tx, winning a mythical national championship together in 2014.
Little was a first-team All-SEC selection as a left tackle last season but has the ability to play right tackle, too. NFL.com’s Lance Zierlein projects him as a second-rounder.
Zierlein assesses him this way: “Little possesses the important combination of size, length and quickness as a prototypical left tackle prospect. While he wasn’t asked to do it much in 2018, he has the athletic ability to handle zone-blocking duties, which could suit his skill-set more than a physical rush attack. Little is a natural bender with good feet and pepper in his punch as blind-side protector, but his average anchor and inconsistent body control create some concern. He will be an early starter at left tackle, but needs to improve his strength and eliminate his tendency to lean in order to reach the potential his physical and athletic traits offer.”
Evans, meanwhile, played right tackle for Oklahoma in 2016 and 2017 before moving to left tackle last year.
Zierlein projects him as a fourth-rounder and assesses him this way:
“Three-year starter with tackle experience on both sides who plays with excellent core strength, good hand placement and a noticeable nasty streak. Evans is below average as an athlete but makes up for it with upper-body power and solid technique. Despite being under 6-foot-5, his arm length (34 3/4 inches) might convince a team to try him at right tackle before any moves inside. He might be scheme-dependent, but strength and toughness give him a shot at becoming a good backup with eventual starter potential.”
Taylor, meanwhile, is a likely top 15 pick and will be a strong consideration for the Dolphins – along with several defensive linemen – if available at No. 13.
California guard/tackle Patrick Mekari is the other confirmed offensive lineman who came to Dolphins headquarters on a “30” visit.
But the Dolphins also have had some level of contact with a bunch of other tackle prospects, including Alabama’s Jonah Williams, Washington’s Kaleb McGary, West Virginia’s Yodne Cajuste, Wisconsin’s David Edwards, Washington State’s Andre Dillard, Clemson’s Mitch Hyatt, Alabama State’s Tytus Howard, Northern Illinois’ Max Scharping and Ohio State’s Isaiah Prince.
Here was my Wednesday piece with analysts weighing in on what the Dolphins should do in the first round.