The Dolphins took the NFL by storm yesterday by partaking in two blockbuster draft trades with the San Francisco 49ers and Philadelphia Eagles, and remarkably pulled the entire act off within a span of minutes. The Dolphins started off by moving down in the draft, as they sent their 3rd overall selection to the 49ers in return for the 12th overall pick, first round picks in 2022 and 2023, and a third round pick in 2022 as well. Within an hour, Miami then moved back up in the draft, as they sent a package of picks, headlined by the 12th overall pick they just got from the 49ers, to the Eagles in return for the 6th overall pick. It was a breathtaking display from Miami to execute two large scale deals in such short order, and it should have massive repurcussions around the league.
While the Dolphins have garnered the most attention for pulling off these two big deals, it was equally surprising that both the 49ers and Eagles were willing to make these moves. San Francisco seemed to be set with Jimmy Garappolo as their quarterback and had a good selection of players available at the 12th pick, as they were rumored to be looking into drafting some help for their defensive line. It was believed to be more likely that the 49ers would move down the draft than up, and they certainly made a statement by moving up. The Eagles weren’t really expected to move around in the draft, as they could have immediately filled one of their many areas of need with the 6th pick. Moving down does make sense though, as they accrue a couple more picks while only moving down to the 12 spot of the draft, where they are still likely to find a high impact player.
Miami is now set to have five first-round picks over the next three drafts, which should be extremely helpful in adding more young talent to an already young roster. The Dolphins are committed to building around second year quarterback Tua Tagovailoa, and these deals seem geared to getting him more talent on the offensive side of the ball. They’ve already had a busy free agency that included signing wide receiver Will Fuller and center Matt Skura. Miami is still in prime position to take an elite offensive playmaker with the 6th pick, with former Alabama teammates Devonta Smith and Jaylen Waddle seeming like the two most likely targets at this point. The Dolphins could easily take a defensive player with their second first round pick (18th overall) too, which goes to show how their numerous picks will help them get better on both sides of the ball.
San Francisco was rumored to be trying to trade up with the New York Jets into the number two spot, but they were forced to settle for one spot lower. This move would seem to signal that the 49ers are looking to move on from QB Jimmy Garappolo, but according to Adam Schefter, a 49er source told him that “Jimmy is here to stay. He’s our guy this year.” If that’s the case, then why would you trade all of that draft capital to move up to the 3rd overall pick? It seems likely at this point that the 49ers will draft a QB to sit behind Garoppolo for this season, before potentially turning the job over to them the season after. Garappolo has struggled with injuries for most of his time in San Francisco, so it makes sense that the 49ers would be exploring new QB options. And this may be the last great quarterback class for a few years, making this the last chance for the 49ers to get their QB of the future. The 49ers shocked the NFL by making a huge move up in the draft, but it still feels like there are moves for them to make between now and the Draft.
As for the Eagles. their fans are understandably confused that their team traded down six spots in the draft to the 12th pick. Trading back to draft behind the New York Giants and Dallas Cowboys seems to imply that GM Howie Roseman isn’t necessarily looking to be competitive in the weak NFC East this season. Now that a first-round receiver is more than likely off the board, which is what the Eagles most likely would have drafted at the 6th pick, what position can they target at the 12th pick now? With Jalen Hurts, Miles Sanders, Dallas Goedert, and a substantial number of receivers at their disposal, Philly might be looking at an offensive lineman, possibly Alijah Vera-Tucker, who can play both guard and tackle. A cornerback also isn’t out of the question with the lack of talent and height on the roster. This could also just be a simple move where they like the options available at twelve, and pick up more picks along the way. This deal may be confusing now for the Eagles, but could pay dividends down the line if things go the Eagles way.
Click on the images below to shop for new NFL gear!