Presumptions that Miami Dolphins general manager Dennis Hickey will look to rebuild his offensive line with the club's first-round draft pick are on target, but the mock drafts linking the Dolphins to Notre Dame's Zack Martin are off-target, according to a published report. Instead, Alabama offensive tackle Cyrus Kouandjio is the club's preference, perhaps even if Michigan tackle Taylor Lewan is still available.
"Dennis has got a love for Kouandjio and he should be sitting there for them," a source "with knowledge of the situation" told the Palm Beach Post.
The report suggests Hickey prefers Kouandjio over Martin because the club views the guard-tackle-versatile Martin as more of a guard in the NFL, whereas Kouandjio would fill the Dolphins' immediate need at right tackle. Miami holds the No. 19 overall pick in the first round and are frequently linked with Martin. NFL Media analysts Daniel Jeremiah, Bucky Brooks and Charles Davis all project Martin to the Dolphins in their most recent mock drafts, although Jeremiah suggested last week that Martin might not be available at No. 19.
The No. 19 pick would no doubt be just fine with Kouandjio, who is projected no higher than the Carolina Panthers' pick at No. 28 (Brooks) among the aforementioned analysts. NFL Media senior analyst Gil Brandt recently left Kouandjio out of his top 50 list, but suggested on Twitter that the Crimson Tide's two-year starter at left tackle could end up much better off.