The NFL Draft will take place over three days this weekend, but teams have been preparing for it for months now. In that time they have evaluated hundreds of prospects, and now that the Draft is just about here, it's time to lie about their feelings towards just about everybody. It's called a smokescreen, and it's meant to keep the other teams drafting ahead or behind the team off balance. Consider Joe Philbin, the head coach of a Miami Dolphins team that has been linked to Ryan Tannehill with the eighth overall pick by just about everybody on the Planet. Well, according to Mike Berardino of the Sun Sentinel, the Dolphins aren't even really talking about Tannehill.
"We’ve talked obviously a lot," Philbin said. "We’ve had draft meetings. We’ve discussed him as an individual. We’ve watched his film. Obviously Mike [Sherman] has been around Ryan for a long, long time, but it wasn’t like we sat around and said, ‘OK, what about him at eight?’ "
With all due respect to Philbin, I'm sure many of the people in his staff have said that exact sentence dozens of times over the past few weeks. They may not be waiting for Tannehill to drop into their laps, but it seems naive to think that they haven't even discussed the possibility. The truth is they've probably had that level of conversation about every player that could conceivably fall to them, and a lot of players ranked lower than their pick too. But this is just the way the game is played this time of year.