Miami Dolphins Target Record Prospect at NFL Draft with 21st Pick

Dolphins strategize amid key offensive line challenges.

by Nouman Rasool
Miami Dolphins Target Record Prospect at NFL Draft with 21st Pick
© Megan Briggs/Getty Images

As the Miami Dolphins gear up for the 2024 NFL Draft, anticipation is building over how they'll utilize their first-round pick. With critical gaps on both offense and defense, the team is poised to make a significant selection that could reshape its roster for the foreseeable future.

The Dolphins, looking to bolster their lineup, are confronted with needs at offensive tackle, guard, safety, and edge rusher. In the past, Miami has addressed its edge-rushing needs through NFL free agency, particularly with notable players like Bradley Chubb and Jaelan Phillips.

However, injuries to these key players have left the team's defensive capabilities in a state of uncertainty as the season approaches.

Offensive Line Uncertainties

The offensive line presents a more urgent challenge. Veteran tackle Terron Armstead is expected back for another season, yet concerns linger over his long-term availability and health.

The interior line also requires attention, suggesting that Miami could opt for a strategic enhancement through the draft. Despite limited selections this year, the buzz around their first-round strategy indicates a potential surprise.

Rumors are swirling that Miami has set its sights on Xavier Worthy, a standout wide receiver from Texas, as per insights from Albert Breer of Sports Illustrated. Worthy, known for his exceptional speed, clocked a record-breaking 40-yard dash time of 4.21 seconds at the NFL Combine, the fastest in this year’s draft class.

His performance at Texas' Pro Day, coupled with personal meetings with Dolphins head coach Mike McDaniel, underscores a strong mutual interest. Worthy’s 2023 season stats impress with 75 receptions, 1,014 yards, and five touchdowns, showcasing his potential as a dynamic playmaker.

However, selecting Worthy carries risks. Weighing just 165 pounds, there are concerns about his durability against the physical demands of the NFL and aggressive defensive play. His relatively slight frame may require careful management and creative play-calling to ensure he can effectively contribute without undue risk of injury.

McDaniel, known for his innovative offensive strategies, appears well-suited to leverage Worthy's strengths while mitigating his physical limitations. Yet, with the depth of talent in this year’s wide receiver pool and pressing needs on the offensive line, choosing Worthy with the 21st overall pick might be considered a gamble.

As draft day approaches, the Dolphins’ decision could either be a masterstroke, adding a record-breaking talent to their arsenal, or a contentious move, given their other unaddressed team needs. Fans and analysts alike will be watching closely, eager to see how this bold strategy unfolds in shaping the future of the franchise.

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