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Brian Flores: Will Fuller, Jaylen Waddle can help run game a lot

Mike Florio and Chris Simms pick their favorite and least favorite draft classes from the 2021 NFL Draft.

The Dolphins averaged 3.9 yards per rush during the 2020 season and some thought they’d try to improve that area of the team by drafting a running back.

Miami didn’t do that until the seventh round, but head coach Brian Flores thinks an earlier pick will have a positive impact on the run game. The Dolphins drafted wide receiver Jaylen Waddle with the sixth overall pick and Flores said that the speed he and free agent signing Will Fuller bring to the offense will open things up on the ground.

“I think it [helps] a lot,” Flores said, via Barry Jackson of the Miami Herald. “I think if you’ve got guys who can run on the perimeter, if you load the box, there’s more opportunity for 1-on-1 matchups and opportunities downfield. Defenses have to make that decision when you have those types of players on the field and again, if you don’t load the box and you play for those big plays, then there’s less people in the box and less people to block and I think it really becomes kind of a numbers math game. If you get those guys blocked, there’s more space to run.”

The Dolphins did add Malcolm Brown to the backfield in free agency while the offensive line now includes center Matt Skura, D.J. Fluker, and second-round pick Liam Eichenberg, so they have taken other steps to address the running offense. There are other free agent running back options available in the event the Dolphins think they provide an upgrade to what’s on hand.