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    Worst Miami Dolphins Draft Picks of All Time: Featuring Dion Jordan, Sammie Smith, and More

    There have been some ugly Miami Dolphins draft picks over the last six decades. Who were the 10 worst? We ranked them.

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    Published on June 27, 2024 | 1:00 PM EDT

    From essentially the day Joe Robbie was awarded the franchise, there have been some truly dubious Miami Dolphins draft picks.

    Miami’s list of the 10 worst selections of all time is so wild that Randal Hill, Lorenzo Hampton, Don Reese, and Frank Emanuel didn’t even make the cut.

    Unfamiliar with those names? There’s a reason. But you’ll likely know these, not because of fame, but because of infamy.

    Ranking the Worst Draft Picks in Miami Dolphins History

    10) Jackie Shipp | 1984

    • Position: Linebacker
    • School: Oklahoma
    • Round: 1
    • Pick: 14
    • Dolphins stats: Five seasons, 71 games (41 starts), three fumble recoveries, one interception, one sack

    It wasn’t as though Jackie Shipp was a total disaster for the Dolphins. It’s just that he somehow managed to start the equivalent of two and a half seasons for Miami without making a single impactful (or at least memorable) play.

    9) Billy Milner | 1995

    • Position: Offensive Tackle
    • School: Houston
    • Round: 1
    • Pick: 25
    • Dolphins stats: Two seasons, 20 games (nine starts)

    After a solid rookie campaign, Billy Milner lost his starting job to James Brown before the 1996 season began. He was gone after the first month of Year 2, traded by Jimmy Johnson for Troy Drayton.

    8) John Avery | 1998

    • Position: Running Back
    • School: Mississippi
    • Round: 1
    • Pick: 29
    • Dolphins stats: Two seasons, 17 games (zero starts), 143 carries for 503 yards and two touchdowns

    Give Johnson this: He knew when to cut bait. John Avery is another Clinton-era first-round pick traded after one season. The Dolphins’ doubts were justified. Avery would only play 12 more NFL games after leaving Miami.

    7) Jamar Fletcher | 2001

    • Position: Defensive Back
    • School: Wisconsin
    • Round: 1
    • Pick: 26
    • Dolphins stats: Three seasons, 41 games (six starts), 55 tackles (48 solo), two interceptions, 12 passes defensed

    Jamar Fletcher was the dreaded “player to be named later” in the 2004 David Boston trade, and the Dolphins were likely grateful to get his contract off their books after he couldn’t even win the nickel job in Miami.

    6) Yatil Green | 1997

    • Position: Wide Receiver
    • School: Miami (FL)
    • Round: 1
    • Pick: 15
    • Dolphins stats: One season, eight games (one start), 18 receptions for 234 yards and zero touchdowns on 40 targets

    It’s hard not to feel sorry for Yatil Green, who suffered a gruesome knee injury in his first training camp practice as a pro — and then tore the ACL in the same knee the following summer. He was never the same.

    5) Sammie Smith | 1989

    • Position: Running Back
    • School: Florida State
    • Round: 1
    • Pick: 9
    • Dolphins stats: Three seasons, 44 games (35 starts), 509 carries for 1,787 yards and 15 touchdowns

    Sammie Smith was an unfortunate combination of bad and troubled. He spent seven years in prison after his career on a cocaine conviction. The Dolphins surely regret taking Smith instead of do-it-all Eric Metcalf, who went four picks later in 1989.

    MORE: Best Trades in Miami Dolphins History

    4) David Overstreet | 1981

    • Position: Running Back
    • School: Oklahoma
    • Round: 1
    • Pick: 13
    • Dolphins stats: One season, 14 games (zero starts), 85 carries for 392 yards and one touchdown

    David Overstreet’s Dolphins tenure was marred from the start, as it took two years to work out a contract dispute to even get him on the field. On the field, his first season amassed only 392 yards, 85 carries, and one TD over 14 games, none of which were starts. Unfortunately, he died in a car crash before his second season with Miami.

    3) Rick Norton | 1966

    • Position: Quarterback
    • School: Kentucky
    • Round: 1
    • Pick: 2
    • Dolphins stats: Four seasons, 31 games (11 starts), 156 of 377 pass attempts for 1,751 yards, six touchdowns, and 30 interceptions

    Rick Norton went 1-10 as the Dolphins’ part-time starter from 1966-69.

    He was so bad — and so clearly a lost cause — as a rookie that the Dolphins drafted Bob Griese fourth overall just 12 months after taking Norton with the AFL Draft’s No. 2 pick.

    2) Dion Jordan | 2013

    • Position: Defensive End
    • School: Oregon
    • Round: 1
    • Pick: 3
    • Dolphins stats: Two seasons, 26 games (one start), 46 tackles (39 solo), three sacks, three passes defensed

    This is probably the decision that finally got Jeff Ireland fired.

    The Dolphins’ former GM traded up in a terrible draft to take Dion Jordan, a positionless player with big-time demons who was kicked out of the league for a season after multiple failed drug tests.

    1) Jim Grabowski | 1966

    • Position: Halfback
    • School: Illinois
    • Round: 1
    • Pick: 1
    • Dolphins stats: N/A

    The Dolphins’ first-ever draft pick was their worst. As an AFL expansion team, they owned the No. 1 overall pick in 1966 and used it on Jim Grabowski.

    KEEP READING: Ranking the Best Miami Dolphins Teams of All Time

    Bad decision. Grabowski was also eligible to be selected in the NFL Draft (this was just before the merger), and when the Green Bay Packers took him ninth overall, he decided to play for Vince Lombardi instead of George Wilson.

    Grabowski would never play a down for the Dolphins in his six-year pro career.

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