As the Miami Dolphins continue to inch closer to another pivotal NFL Draft to help advance their rebuilding effort, the team will continue to hone in on opportunities to not only add talent but keep the team well positioned for the future to continue picking players at a surplus. One such obvious avenue to do so in 2021 would be to trade out of the No. 3 overall pick in this year’s draft, especially if the team is committed to drafting a wide receiver or offensive weapon first to bolster the supporting cast for young quarterback Tua Tagovailoa.
And as the quarterback market shifts across the NFL, Miami’s best bet for a deal may continue to be the Carolina Panthers. Yes, the Philadelphia Eagles opened the door to draft a quarterback themselves at No. 6 overall —but the Panthers are reported to be more aggressive with their mentality and the presence of Philadelphia in front of them in the draft queue will only further create urgency for Carolina to make a splash.
How intent are the Panthers to make a move? Sports Illustrated’s Albert Breer has reported them to be “obsessed”. That’s good news for the Dolphins:
“I asked one well-placed source this week about something I’d heard for about a month now—that owner David Tepper was consumed with the idea of finding a long-term answer at the position. “More like obsessed,” was the response I got…My best guess is they’ll continue to monitor the Watson situation for the next two months and, if the Texans stick to their guns, look hard at trading up from No. 8 for a quarterback.” — Albert Breer, Sports Illustrated
If Carolina wants to find and secure a franchise quarterback, they won’t have very many options that aren’t the Dolphins to get a deal done. The Jaguars and Jets are assumed to be taking quarterbacks back to back with the first two picks. And the team picking fourth is a division rival:
- Jacksonville Jaguars (Assumed QB pick)
- New York Jets (Assumed QB pick)
- Miami Dolphins
- Atlanta Falcons (NFC South rival)
- Cincinnati Bengals
- Philadelphia Eagles (Potential QB pick)
- Detroit Lions
- Carolina Panthers (“Obsessed” with finding QB)
Carolina trading with Detroit will do them no good to leap the Eagles. Cincinnati is the only other feasible option (barring division rivals doing business to bring a new quarterback into the division) and the Bengals would still leave another team the option to leap Carolina if they moved prematurely to find a dance partner.
So as the pressure mounts, Miami will be able to leverage the Panthers’ dreams of a franchise quarterback against them to try to squeeze out a blockbuster deal that would have the team set for cashing in extra picks for years down the road.