Dolphins select Clemson defensive tackle Christian Wilkins with No. 13 pick

2-time national champion brings experience to defensive line

By Peter Burke - Local10.com Managing Editor
Andy Lyons/Getty Images

Clemson defensive tackle Christian Wilkins holds a Miami Dolphins jersey after being chosen No. 13 overall in the 2019 NFL Draft on April 25, 2019 in Nashville, Tennessee.

NASHVILLE, Tenn. - The Miami Dolphins picked Clemson defensive tackle Christian Wilkins with the 13th overall pick in Thursday night's first round of the NFL draft.

Wilkins anchored Clemson's defensive line and helped the Tigers win a pair of national championships.

The 6-foot-4, 315-pound defensive lineman started 45 games in four years at Clemson, recording 191 tackles, 16 sacks, 16 passes defended, two forced fumbles and four fumble recoveries.

Wilkins also ran for two touchdowns and caught another in his Clemson career.

He'll be counted on to help usher in a new era of Miami football under first-year head coach Brian Flores.

"I just feel like I'm the right guy for the job," Wilkins told Local 10 sports director Will Manso after being drafted.

Wilkins said he "knew they were interested" in him and is happy to be headed to Miami. He also joked that he's happy he'll be playing football in Florida, where there is no state income tax.

"Pretty excited about them taxes," he said. "A lot of guys who went before me, I might be making just a little bit more, but hey, it is what it is."

Although he's coming from a program accustomed to winning, Wilkins said he's the kind of guy who will "buy in" to the new coaching staff and the rebuild that awaits him in Miami.

"Hopefully, you know, I can be part of a team that, you know, gets to a Super Bowl and brings that winning culture back to Miami," he said.

Oh, and there's also an opportunity to work on his beach body.

"It's always beach season in Miami, so, you know, I'm gonna be looking good, too," Wilkins said. "They're gonna be seeing a 300-pounder with a six pack."

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