More Andy Cohen Columns
What impressed me most about the Dolphins decision to draft Oregon pass rusher Dion Jordan?
That they went out and got him.
Bold? Brash? Assertive? Relentless? The Dolphins, and General Manager Jeff Ireland, were all of that and more.
I have seen far too many Dolphins drafts over the years where the team talked about a player they would have loved to have, but a player that simply was not within their reach. I always wondered why settle for that? Why not do what successful franchises often do? Find a player they want and do everything within their power to land him. Don’t settle for second place. Don’t settle for the next best player.
So you think after all that research, after the interviews, after all the testing, you’re able to pinpoint the most explosive pass rusher in the 2013 draft? Than seize the moment. Pay the price. Do what you need to do.
That’s what is so impressive about the trade that brought Jordan to the Dolphins. They simply refused to allow another team to take him. They had the artillery with an extra second round pick and they had the trade partner in the Oakland Raiders with the No. 3 overall pick.
And they moved swiftly and decisively, acting like a team tired of losing, a team with a clear well thought out blueprint and a team that is quickly putting together so many important pieces.
The Dolphins set a tone in free agency. Go for the big catch. Be decisive. Act quickly. And they have now carried that same tone over the draft. How can you not like that? How can you not respect Ireland and his staff for taking this type of approach?
For them to have made this move, for them to have moved up nine picks in the first round, you just know what they think of Dion Jordan. You know they see a player who can provide the perfect bookend pass rusher for
Another Jason Taylor? Jordan said that while he admires the way Jason played, he wants to make a name for himself. And while it’s certainly too early to make comparisons of any kind, Jordan sure seems to have the credentials, the measurables and the intangibles to be an impact player in the league.
A dominating pass rusher is one of the toughest finds in the NFL. You can make the argument that it is the most important position on defense. Jordan had 29 tackles for losses in his career at Oregon. That says plenty. But more than production, I believe it is potential that pointed Ireland and his staff in Jordan’s direction. He was the fastest outside linebacker in the draft. Just under 6-7 and just under 250 pounds, he so much looked the part. He is young. He is hungry. He seems to have a real passion for the game.
And when you look at the tape, when you see the highlights, one question quickly comes to mind:
Are you paying attention, Tom Brady?
If the Dolphins are going to replace the Patriots as the top team in the AFC East, they have to figure out a way to do a better job on Brady. Dion Jordan may have a lot to do with that.
When you consider what they potentially got in Jordan, giving up a second round pick – when you already have another one – doesn’t seem like a hefty price. That’s what you do with extra picks. You make moves.
It is refreshing to hear so many people talking about the Dolphins being in a “win now” mode. While this is no great revelation, and you can make the argument that every team is in a win now mode, it is nonetheless a description we haven’t heard in these parts for a while.
The many moves in free agency. The tenacity in re-signing many of their own players. The drafting of Jordan. It all adds up to a team that will be vastly improved next season, a team that will have many new looks, and I’m not just talking about the logo and uniform.
Yes, the Dolphins became one of the big storylines of the first night of the draft. But, as far as I’m concerned, the most telling storyline was the bold way in which they went after the player they wanted.