Due to the negligence and ineptitude of the Houston Texans, the 10-6 Miami Dolphins have the 3rd overall pick in the 2021 NFL draft. All year people have been saying that the Dolphins needed more weapons for their young quarterback Tua Tagovailoa. Now with this early pick, they may be able to do so. Throughout the year, many suspected that former LSU wide receiver Ja’Marr Chase would be the Dolphins’ number one choice. However, he should not be. The Dolphins should instead draft recent Heisman winner DeVonta Smith over Ja’Marr Chase.
Many believe that Ja’Marr Chase should go ahead of DeVonta Smith because he is better. Chase was the number two receiver for LSU in 2019 only behind the phenomenal Justin Jefferson. However, Chase and Smith are actually not that far apart when it comes to skill and ability. In 2019, Chase caught 84 passes for 1780 yards and 20 touchdowns. Compare that to Smith in 2020, who in one fewer game caught 117 passes for 1856 yards and 23 touchdowns.
These starts are eerily close. What makes this even more interesting is that While Chase only had Justin Jefferson to compete with for passes; Smith has to compete with Jaylen Waddle and the phenomenal sophomore John Metchie. Already with fewer games and more competition, Smith has surpassed Chase.
However, skill and ability are not the only things that one should consider when drafting skill position players. You have to think about how they would fit into the offense and how they will connect with their quarterback. Luckily, DeVonta Smith has been catching passes from Tua Tagovailoa for the last few years. They both came from the same offensive system and they both already have chemistry.
Tua suffers from a lack of trust and comfort with his receivers. That is why he had limited himself to the dinky passes. He is also very timid on the long ball, despite having open receivers. However having someone on the roster like DeVonta, who is not only talented but comfortable with Tua, will allow the Dolphins to rejuvenate their passing game. The Dolphins need to draft DeVonta Smith.
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