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Dolphins draft Penn State edge rusher Chop Robinson with first opening-round pick in three years

MIAMI GARDENS — The last two first-round picks for the Miami Dolphins have now been pass rushers.

The Dolphins selected Penn State edge defender Chop Robinson with the No. 21 pick in Thursday’s first round.

It was the first time they picked in the draft’s opening round in three years, the last being Jaelan Phillips, the former Miami Hurricane edge rusher who was the Dolphins’ selection with the No. 18 pick in 2021 after they picked wide receiver Jaylen Waddle at 6 that year.

With Phillips (Achilles) and fellow outside linebacker Bradley Chubb (knee) rehabbing from season-ending injuries this offseason, Robinson gives Miami a security blanket at the position if either does not quite return to form or is delayed in recovery. He can also work into a pass-rushing rotation with Phillips, Chubb and veteran signing Shaquil Barrett when all are healthy.

The Dolphins lost outside linebacker Andrew Van Ginkel in free agency to the Minnesota Vikings this offseason, so there was already a void, and the team likely wanted to stock up on edge rushers after having so many injuries at the position last season.

Robinson, who is 6-foot-3, 254 pounds, was the draft’s fourth edge defender taken behind Laiatu Latu, Dallas Turner and Jared Verse. The Dolphins got the fifth defensive player selected in the draft, benefiting from the first 14 picks going to offense, with six of the first 12 being quarterbacks.

Robinson is an athletic, quick player at his size, running a 4.48-second 40-yard dash at the NFL scouting combine. He had four sacks last season for the Nittany Lions and 5 ½ in 2022.

Thursday night’s selection was the Dolphins’ first pick in the first round since the 2021 draft, when Miami chose wide receiver Jaylen Waddle (No. 6) and outside linebacker Jaelan Phillips (18).

The Dolphins enter Friday with a second-round pick, No. 55 overall, as Rounds 2 and 3 of the draft take place, with the fourth through seventh rounds Saturday. Miami is currently slated to be without a third-round pick Friday, one that was stripped from the team for its tampering violation penalty handed down in August 2022, along with a first-rounder last year.

This story will be updated.

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