Close your eyes and follow me on this journey through the Dolphins playmakers paradise. Pro Bowl receiver Mike Wallace is going deep, using his 4.3 speed to take a cornerback and safety with him downfield. New Dolphins tight end Dustin Keller is running an option route down the right seam of the field, and uses his 4.4 speed to create separation from a linebacker. Quarterback-friendly receiver Brian Hartline, who became the eighth receiver in franchise history to produce a 1,000-yard season last year, is running a 15-yard out that allows him to serve as the safety value on the play. Envision Davone Bess, Brandon Gibson, Armon Binns, or a draft pick of your choice, running a drag route across the middle of the field. This fantasy should be an offensive utopia for Ryan Tannehill, the Dolphins starting quarterback, and Mike Sherman, the team's offensive coordinator. However, it could turn into a nightmare quickly if the Dolphins don't approach the 2013 draft properly. Open your eyes and pay attention to the defensive lineman about to level the Dolphins with a bone-crushing sack. Envision the pocket consistently collapsing. See what I see, which is now an offense filled with weapons, but one lacking a line that can adequately protect the quarterback. Take a good look at the Dolphins' offensive line that finished last season as the starters, the players who remain the front runners to start again in 2013 if the unit isn't upgraded in the draft. Jonathan Martin was one of the NFL's worst offensive tackles during his rookie season according to ProFootballFocus.com, which rated him 76th out of 80. And now he'll be protecting Tannehill's blindside fulltime. On the right side is Nate Garner, who has been respectable in a fill-in role as a tackle or guard, but in four years hasn't proven he's reliable enough for a starting role. Garner allowed one sack and a season-high six hurries in the season's final loss to New England. And then we've got everyone's favorite fat boy, John Jerry, who reported to training camp at 370-plus pounds last season. Jerry started all of last season at right guard, but describing his performance as "good" would be stretching the truth.
Dolphins must make upgrading offensive line a priority in this draft
Fort Lauderdale Sun-Sentinel | Apr 10