The last of the on-field drills for NFL draft prospects at the scouting combine were completed Sunday at Lucas Oil Stadium, and pro football teams got their final looks in Indianapolis at members of the draft class they’re interested in.

The Miami Dolphins, before the draft in late April, prepare for free agency to begin a week from Monday. Depending on which positions they address in free agency, they will use information gathered from the combine through a process that continues through college teams’ pro days and prospect facility visits, which can begin Tuesday.

Miami doesn’t have a first-round pick this year, but it has a selection in the middle of the second round, No. 51 overall, as well as two in the third round, plus a sixth- and seventh-rounder.

With an eye on possible needs — if not addressed in free agency — at linebacker, cornerback, running back, tight end and on the offensive line, here are 10 prospects who improved their draft stock at the combine, many of which could interest the Dolphins:

Iowa linebacker Jack Campbell

He’s a throwback of an inside linebacker with a 6-foot-5, 249-pound frame that can play physical in the box against the run and downhill-blocking offensive linemen. He’s not perceived as an athletic linebacker but, although his straight-line speed didn’t flash with a 4.65-second 40-yard dash, he impressed with the best three-cone drill (6.74 seconds) and 20-yard shuttle (4.24) among linebackers, as well as the second-best broad jump (10-8) and No. 3 vertical (37.5 inches).

The Dolphins could use a secure tackler like Campbell, who displayed more athleticism than scouts anticipated, assuming they are looking to upgrade in the middle this offseason for new defensive coordinator Vic Fangio. The Butkus Award winner for the nation’s top linebacker and recipient of the William V. Campbell Award, also known as the Academic Heisman, will also surely impress in interviews with teams. Campbell could be the leader of a defense for the next decade for whichever team drafts him.

Maryland cornerback Deonte Banks

Banks turned heads with his 4.35-second 40-yard dash, 11-4 broad jump and vertical of 42 inches. For perspective with other cornerbacks that could go around the same Day 2 range, Banks, at 197 pounds, ran the same 40 time as Mississippi State cornerback Emmanuel Forbes at a far-leaner 166 pounds. Banks can play more physical while still possessing the elite closing speed. Banks also had the top vertical, No. 2 …read more

Source:: The Mercury News


Ten prospects who improved their draft stock at the combine — and might interest Dolphins

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