Posted on Saturday, 04.11.09
FLORIDA SPORTS BUZZ
Miami Dolphins are scouting gems from lower-division schools
By BARRY JACKSON
Last April, the Dolphins landed one of the draft's lower-division gems in Hampton's Kendall Langford. Now they are looking for another, and NFL people say they have focused on several intriguing prospects.
On defense, there are at least three such players that Miami not only worked out privately out of town but also brought here for visits: 5-11 cornerbacks Don Carey (Norfolk State) and Greg Toler (St. Pauls in Va.) and University of Western Ontario defensive tackle Vaughn Martin.
Carey (five interceptions in 2008) is a physical corner with great recovery speed, and Toler an instinctive ballhawk (six interceptions and three blocked kicks). Both are potential later-round picks.
Martin -- the first Canadian college underclassman to declare for the draft -- lived in Jamaica until age 9 but couldn't accept a Michigan State scholarship because of academics. At 6-3, 331 pounds, he wasn't invited to the NFL combine but graded out better than some tackles who were.
Miami also summoned Western Illinois outside linebacker Jason Williams (NCAA career-record 14 forced fumbles) to team headquarters. An associate said the Dolphins have not shown as much interest in the top lower-division prospect, Richmond outside linebacker Lawrence Sidbury, as the Jets and Ravens. But Miami sent assistant coach Jim Reid to do a few drills and watch film with him at his Pro Day.
On offense, Miami has invested considerable time in Abilene Christian's Johnny Knox, a potential midrounder who is visiting Dolphins camp after earlier working out privately, on campus, for receivers coach Karl Dorrell. Knox (30 touchdowns and 2227 receiving yards in two years) had the third-fastest 40-yard time at the combine.
Others on Miami's radar: Northwestern State receiver Dudley Guice, Richmond's Josh Vaughan (1884 yards rushing) and Monmouth tight end John Nalbone. But aside from Sidbury (whom ESPN's Todd McShay has slotted to Miami at No. 56), Mel Kiper Jr. said, ``I don't think you will see a non 1-A player go until the third or fourth round.''
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