Miami Dolphins could target edge defenders in the draft
- PFF’s 2016 NFL Comeback Player of the Year Cameron Wake had another highly productive season (86.8 overall grade; ranked 10th out of 109 qualified edge defenders) in 2016, but is now 35 years old. On the opposite side, Andre Branch finished 2016 ranked 70th among edge defenders with an overall grade of 56.4; Branch has never graded above 62.8 in his five-year career.
- Newly acquired defensive end William Hayes will be 32 years old when the 2017 season kicks off and although he has graded out at 81.0 or better in each of the last five seasons, he has not played more than 600 snaps in any season since 2009.
- Haason Reddick ranked fourth among draft-eligible FBS 3-4 OLBs with an 8.7 percent run-stop percentage; if Reddick can clean up his tackling a bit (5.1 tackle efficiency rating – the number of attempted tackles made per each missed tackle – ranked 54th among the 61 qualified linebackers) he should be an absolute force against the run. Reddick was compared to Jamie Collins in the PFF Draft Guide due to his ability to have an impact in all three phases of defense.
- Former UCLA OLB Takkarist McKinley plays low in the run game, allowing him to get under blockers and play with good leverage against the ball carrier. McKinley was ninth among draft-eligible FBS 3-4 OLBs with an 8.2 percent run-stop percentage in 2016. McKinley had some tackling issues of his own last season, as his 9.4 tackle efficiency rating in run defense ranked 37th among the group; McKinley had just missed three tackles though over 789 snaps 2014-2015, making his 2016 woes a bit of an anomaly.