Dolphins’ second round of coaching interviews on hold while GM Chris Grier evaluates draft prospects at Senior Bowl

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Three potential Dolphins draft targets, including South Florida local, withdraw from Senior Bowl
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The Miami Dolphins’ search for their new head coach is on hold until later in the week.

Dolphins general manager Chris Grier, assistant general manager Marvin Allen and team scouts are among the personnel staff that’s evaluating NFL draft prospects at Senior Bowl practices that run from Tuesday through Thursday in Mobile, Alabama ahead of the Senior Bowl game on Saturday.

The Dolphins have not begun their second round of interviews, as of Tuesday, according to an NFL Network report. That process will not be picked back up until at least Thursday.

Miami’s top remaining candidate appears to be San Francisco 49ers offensive coordinator Mike McDaniel. The Dolphins were reportedly slated to interview McDaniel, former Buffalo Bills offensive coordinator Brian Daboll and Dallas Cowboys offensive coordinator Kellen Moore, but Daboll was hired to be the New York Giants’ head coach on Friday. Cowboys owner Jerry Jones has also said he expects Moore to end up back with Dallas next season.

The Dolphins have remained mum on announcing interview requests or completed interviews, as other NFL teams have done. Michigan coach Jim Harbaugh has been linked to the Dolphins in rumors, but the team has apparently not yet pursued an interview with the Wolverines coach. Harbaugh will reportedly have a second interview with Minnesota for the Vikings’ vacant coaching job on Wednesday.

Potential draft targets withdraw from Senior Bowl

Every year at the Senior Bowl, there are top NFL draft prospects that initially were slated to compete that pull out. It’s a way to avoid losing an already-high draft stock if performance is not up to par and also avoid injury when there isn’t much to gain.

Some potential prospects of interest for the Miami Dolphins withdrew ahead of the first day of Senior Bowl practices on Tuesday in Mobile, Alabama: Utah linebacker Devin Lloyd, Penn State wide receiver Jahan Dotson and Georgia running back James Cook.

With the Dolphins having the No. 29 pick in the first round, which comes from the San Francisco 49ers while Miami’s own 15th pick now belongs to the Philadelphia Eagles, Lloyd is widely projected to get taken before the Dolphins’ selection while Dotson may have more of a chance to drop to the end of the draft’s opening round.

Cook, who is the younger brother of NFL star and former Florida State running back Dalvin Cook, is a local product out of Miami Central High after a college career at Georgia that ended with a national championship victory over Alabama. This year’s draft isn’t believed to have a certain first-round running back, so Cook could be a prospect of interest on Friday night of the draft for the second and third rounds.

The Dolphins are likely to be in play for running backs, wide receivers and linebackers either in the draft or in free agency, but their greatest position(s) of need, all along the offensive line, still has plenty of prospects to evaluate at the Senior Bowl. Central Michigan’s Bernhard Raimann, Minnesota’s Daniel Faalele, Northern Iowa’s Trevor Penning and Kentucky’s Darian Kinnard are among the top linemen in Mobile.

Lloyd, who some labeled as the Senior Bowl’s best prospect, recorded 256 tackles, 15 1/2 sacks and five interceptions during his four seasons at Utah.

Dotson presents a deep threat that has largely been missing from the Dolphins offense, especially since the last free agent class’ big signing, receiver Will Fuller, was only available for one game and another quarter during the 2021 season. Dotson had 25 receiving touchdowns and 2,757 receiving yards in his career at Penn State.

Cook has always been part of a committee in the backfield at Georgia. He has versatility with his skill set where he has even been rumored to work out as a slot receiver. If so, an opportunity to potentially see him flash route running and hands from that position were missed at Senior Bowl practices.

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