News: 17 hours agoWaddle's surgically repaired right ankle is "still somewhat of an issue" nine months after the initial injury, according to PFN's Adam Beasley.
Spin: The sixth overall pick dislocated his ankle last October and had surgery the same night, later making it back for a brief appearance in the College Football Playoff National Championship, where he caught three passes for 34 yards just two and a half months after suffering the injury. Despite the unusually quick return to action and subsequent early draft slot, Waddle reportedly still walks with a slight limp at times and has been tightly wrapping his right ankle before every practice. Then again, he's at least been practicing, while fellow Miami wideouts DeVante Parker (PUP - undisclosed), Preston Williams (PUP - foot) and Will Fuller (undisclosed) all were absent from Thursday's session. Waddle's ankle may continue to require some maintenance, but he did say he's feeling good and has been handling full workloads in practice, thus beginning to build his case for a top-three role right out of the gate. The Dolphins do have a deep group at wide receiver, however, so they can afford to rest Waddle at some point -- or ease him in with a limited role -- if the ankle becomes more of a problem.
ESPN Fantasy Projection: Waddle was selected by Miami with the sixth-overall pick of April's draft. The Alabama star is arguably the most explosive WR this year's class, as he sports elite speed, athleticism and playmaking ability. He's on the small side (5-foot-10, 182 pounds) and totaled only 131 targets in three seasons with the Crimson Tide, but his 15.3 YPT, 3.7 YPRR, 10.0 RAC and 81% catch rate during that span are all best in this year's rookie class. Waddle has the ability to play inside or out (he aligned in the slot 71% of the time at Alabama) and figures to begin his career inside with Will Fuller V and DeVante Parker on the perimeter. Waddle might be limited for targets a bit early on, but his talent and pedigree makes him worth a mid-round pick.