Instant analysis of Dolphins’ No. 21 overall pick EDGE Chop Robinson

The Miami Dolphins surprised some when they opted against picking an offensive lineman Thursday night and instead selected Penn State pass rusher Chop Robinson at No. 21 overall. It shouldn’t have come as a shock, though.

While the Dolphins have a stellar pair of pass rushers in Bradley Chubb and Jaelan Phillips, that’s only an effective duo if they’re healthy.

Chubb went down with an ACL tear on New Year’s Eve and Phillips suffered an Achilles tear on Black Friday. While Dolphins head coach Mike McDaniel said he’s been impressed with the rehab efforts of both pass rushers, expecting either one to be the same player in 2024 may be overly optimistic.

An Achilles tear is especially devastating. Look no further than recently signed pass rusher Shaquil Barrett, who suffered that injury during the 2022 season. The two-time Pro Bowler returned to play 16 games for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in 2023, but tallied only 4.5 sacks — a massive dropoff from the 37.5 sacks he recorded through his first three seasons.

The Dolphins can’t count on Phillips to be a double-digit sack artist in 2024 and it may a stretch to think Chubb will be his usual self too. And even if that duo defies the odds, Miami also parted with Emmanuel Ogbah to save cap space and lost a ton of its pass rushing production when Christian Wilkins and Andrew Van Ginkel exited in free agency.

It takes more than a couple pass rushers to impact a quarterback consistently and Robinson rounds out a pass rushing stable that was missing a piece.

While Robinson wasn’t a particularly productive player in college with 9.5 sacks over the last two seasons, he’s freakishly athletic and those stats may be a little deceiving. According to PFF, he racked up 74 quarterback pressures in only 415 pass rushing snaps over the last two seasons.

The Dolphins defense needed a fastball off the edge and they found one in Robinson.

Story originally appeared on Dolphins Wire