Miami Dolphins Mock Draft 2023: Chris Grier Doubles Up at Running Back, Offensive Line

Three positions are addressed in this seven-round Miami Dolphins mock draft, giving the Dolphins a pair of new faces to bolster the running game.

For the second straight year, putting together a Miami Dolphins mock draft doesn’t take a ton of time.

A year after making just four picks — and none in the top 100 — the Dolphins have five in the 2023 NFL Draft: one in the second round, two in the third, one in the sixth, and one in seventh.

That meager draft warchest is a result of two factors: (1) The Dolphins have shifted from a build-through-the-draft approach to a win-now philosophy, and (2) the NFL confiscated Miami’s first-round pick this year as punishment for egregious tampering rules violations.

As a result, the Dolphins have the least draft capital of any of the NFL’s 32 teams.

But that doesn’t mean they’re going to punt on the draft this year. Just the opposite. Their limited chances mean they have to nail the ones they have.

Will they? Find out in our latest Dolphins mock draft.

Latest 2023 Miami Dolphins Mock Draft

Deonte Banks, CB, Maryland | Round 2, Pick 51

Injuries crushed the Dolphins secondary in 2022. Nine different defensive backs played 250 or more snaps on defense.

Chris Grier and Mike McDaniel made a bad bet that Byron Jones would be available in 2022 after offseason Achilles surgery. Jones didn’t play a down last year.

They’ll presumably have a better plan than hope at corner in 2023.

MORE: Why Vic Fangio Picked Miami Dolphins and His Vision for Maximizing Bradley Chubb

Deonte Banks — the 6’2″, 205-pound redshirt junior — will give new defensive coordinator Vic Fangio a long, rangy corner as another candidate to work the boundary.

“Banks has a lean, compact frame with good mass and above-average length,” wrote PFN draft analyst Ian Cummings. “He might not be quantifiably elite in any athletic area, but he is exceptional across the board, with his short-area mobility and burst at the center of his profile.”

Zach Evans, RB, Ole Miss | Round 3, Pick 77

The Dolphins, as of late February, had exactly zero running backs under contract for 2023.

That, of course, will change in free agency, but that scary lack of depth suggests they might select a running back in the first two days of the draft for the first time since 2016.

Zach Evans certainly has natural ability. He was a five-star recruit coming out of high school, but never really put it together in college, rushing for 1,999 yards and 18 touchdowns combined at TCU and Ole Miss.

Still, his career 6.9 yards per attempt average and his excellent quickness cannot be overlooked.

Blake Freeland, BYU, OT | Round 3, Pick 84

The Dolphins had nearly as many injuries at tackle as they did at cornerback in 2022 and need to get younger on the OL. Blake Freeland, if nothing else, should intimidate the opposition simply by getting off the bus. At 6’8″, he’d be among the biggest players in the league.

MORE: 2023 NFL Mock Draft Simulator

Plus, he checks a lot of boxes that Grier likes: four-year starter, team leader, great length, and fluidity. And with an NFL nutrition and strength staff, Freeland could very easy add a good 30 pounds of good weight in the next 12 months.

Camerun Peoples, RB, Appalachian State | Round 6, Pick 178

Have we mentioned the Dolphins don’t have any running backs? So twice is nice at the RB position for Miami for the first time in more than a decade.

Camerun Peoples, a Senior Bowl participant, had 26 touchdowns combined in 2020 and 2021 before a dropoff in his senior season. Peoples has the size and lateral movement to be a dangerous short-yardage back.

Mark Evans II, OT, Arkansas-Pine Bluff | Round 7, Pick 240

It’s unclear if Mark Evans II projects as a guard or a tackle in the NFL, but he has more than enough natural ability to get drafted in Day 3.

MORE: Updated 2023 NFL Draft Order

A strong Combine would prove to GMs and coaches that he can handle a big-time step up in class.

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