General manager Chris Grier said early Saturday morning that the Dolphins tried to trade up from their No. 102 overall pick in the draft, but with few bargaining chips, his calls only managed to break up the monotony of waiting around for two nights.
The Dolphins ended up taking Georgia linebacker Channing Tindall with their pick late in the third round, but only after casting eyes at another Bulldogs linebacker, Nakobe Dean, who fell all the way to the Philadelphia Eagles at No. 83.
“We had discussions about multiple players that we were trying to move up, but the teams wanted to make their picks,” Grier said. “We were not going to give up any picks in the 2023 draft. For us, those were non-negotiable. “
Grier said outside of “a couple of calls we made, it was very quiet.”
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Having already traded for Chiefs receiver Tyreek Hill, the Dolphins were left with the longest wait in team history, not making their first pick until shortly before midnight on Day 2 of the draft.
How did Grier and coach Mike McDaniel pass all that time?
“Eating a lot of food,” Grier said. “Mike and I were just sitting there talking and watching our weight go up.”
Chris Grier knew waiting for Dolphins could happen after acquiring veterans
Grier knew going in that this weekend might turn out like it did. In addition to landing Hill, he added linemen Terron Armstead and Connor Williams, running backs Chase Edmonds and Raheem Mostert and receiver Cedrick Wilson via free agency. Much of the heavy lifting was already done.
Grier, then, became an interested spectator to a draft unlike any other.
“It was a unique draft,” he said. “I think the last couple of years we’ve seen more teams willing to trade and move around, where in the past – I think probably the last three or four years – you’d see two or three trades in the first round. Now there were nine this year. “
Quarterbacks were not in demand. Receivers were, whether they are 2023 rookies or established veterans such as Hollywood Brown and AJ Brown, who were traded Thursday night.
Grier attributed that to teams “that are valuing draft picks and having players under control for four or five years at a cost that’s much cheaper than paying a player 20-plus million and so I think each team has their own philosophy on how they want to build. It is an interesting time around the league. “
Grier didn’t think that the Jets taking cornerback Sauce Gardner with the fourth overall pick was as much in response to the Dolphins adding Hill as it was filling a need with a player who fits their defense.
“It’s a tough division, a very tough division, and I think we made the moves to compete and other teams have as well,” Grier said. “I’m looking forward to it. It’ll be an exciting time and an exciting year for all of us. “
This article originally appeared on Palm Beach Post: Dolphins GM Chris Grier: I tried to trade up in NFL Draft, got nowhere