The draft is merely several hours away. So I thought I would tell my fellow Fins fans what I think we should do. Let's start with what I think are the biggest needs. Offensively, we have issues at RG, RT, WR, and QB. The most pressing need of those for me is RT. We gave up a ton of sacks last season. And Matt Moore likes to take deep drops and push the ball downfield, which he is very good at. So assuming Moore is the starter even if we take Tannehill, I think addressing RT will go the furthest in improving the entire offense next season. But, I don't think there is a RT worthy of the 8th pick. And you can probably find a decent RT later in the draft. The same goes for RG.
So, staying with the offense, that leaves us with QB and WR. Even though trading Marshall hurts I don't think it's as bad as continuing to have a poor oline. Bess and Hartline are capable, as is Fasano at TE. But it certainly is a need. No one seems to think Justin Blackmon will fall to 8. So we are left with Michael Floyd, who I saw a lot of at Notre Dame. Floyd is a lot like Brandon Marshall; tall, thick build, not extremely fast or quick, but can get open and uses his body well to make tough catches and break tackles. I think he will be a solid player. But I'm not sure he will be quite as good as Marshall, which makes me uneasy about taking him as high as 8.
Most of the discussion about our first round pick has been about Ryan Tannehill. I'm on the record as liking Matt Moore and wanting to give him a chance. But long term, we need a QB. The biggest issue with Tannehill is his lack of experience. We really don't have much of a sample size to judge him on. He is athletic and has good physical attributes. But his mechanics aren't perfect and he will probably need time to learn the game, which is fine for at least the first year since Moore will/should start. I'm very uneasy about taking Tannehill because there is just so much uncertainty. Brandon Weedon, on the other hand, has a lot of experience. Based on what I've read from the draft analysts at ThePhins.com, Weedon would be a top 10 pick if it weren't for his age. So I'd be all in favor of drafting him if we trade down in the first round.
Defensively we are pretty solid. The biggest need here is a pass rusher opposite of Cameron Wake. Jason Taylor is retired and Koa Misi isn't good enough. There doesn't seem to be a very sure thing at the DE/OLB pass rushing position in the draft. But given the value of the position I'd be ok if we address this need at 8. We could also use a safety and cornerback. But I'm not sure those positions represent the best value at 8. So based on the value of the positions we need, I think our focus should be on QB and pass rusher. But I don't see many players at those positions that represent good value at that spot.
So ideally I would like for us to try and trade down in the first round in order to try and get a 2nd round pick and move to a spot where we can draft Brandon Weedon. Though if we did this I'd have to consider letting Weedon start right away because of his age and his experience. I'd be ok with drafting Tannehill. We simply have to take a chance at the QB position. And even though he has issues, Tannehill has good potential. My last option would be a pass rusher. If we can find a good pass rusher it could make our defense elite. Aside from those two positions I probably won't be too happy with taking another player at 8, unless someone like Blackmon or Claireborn fall.