As a lot of uncertainty surrounds the Miami Dolphins these days in regards to what they will do at the quarterback position. The options are limited and none of the options are really great but the organization will have to do something in the coming days and that decision on who they sign will end up being the story of the Dolphins 2017 season.
This Dolphins roster is talented at all the right spots and they did a lot to improve in the areas they needed to improve over last year to have this be a complete football team. Sure Miami isn’t a perfect team and they are depending on some youth in key areas but looking up and down this roster this team is very good at this moment with the exception of the quarterback position. Dare I say currently as we sit today about 10 days into training camp this team is a quarterback away from being in that group of top teams in the AFC in 2017. They have a running game, weapons in the passing game and a much improved defense with more talent and speed on that side of the ball compared to last year. So who will be the QB?
Ryan Tannehill–It sounds like surgery is on the horizon for Tannehill which will end his 2017 season. Honestly I think that is the best option especially if Head Coach Adam Gase believes in him long-term and thinks he will be the quarterback to keep moving forward with in the next 3-5 years. Don’t ruin the kid or ruin his future/2018 season. Bite the bullet and get the surgery now so he is ready for next season and a bright future. If 7 months of knee rehab couldn’t get Tannehill ready and he only lasted one week of training camp, another 6 to 8 more weeks of rehab isn’t going to have him hold up for any amount of time this season. Do I hope this injury is a bit of an overreaction and they say no surgery is needed; of course. But it doesn’t look that way and surgery is needed at some point so might as well get it now.
Matt Moore–We all have to be honest with who Matt Moore is. Moore is a nice NFL back-up quarterback but not a guy who can lead a team for a full season. If Moore has to start every game in the month of September this year, that is fine. But Miami needs a legitimate starting quarterback though to take over shortly after. Some basic facts about Matt Moore; A) his entire NFL career he has been a turnover machine (stats don’t lie.) B) Last year Moore played poorly vs New England and even worse vs Pittsburgh. The only reason Miami beat Buffalo was because Jay Ajayi ran for over 200+ yards as if you watch the tape Moore missed open receivers all day vs Buffalo and left a ton of points on the field. With any other quarterback Miami wins that game easily and doesn’t have to go to overtime to pull out a win. Yes, Moore looked good vs the NY Jets but let’s be honest the Jets were so bad last year, especially on defense, the back-up quarterback from Wake Forest could have suited up and started that game with no knowledge of the Dolphins offense for us that night and Miami would have beaten them with ease. Three out of the Four games Moore started last year he played the quarterback position poorly in. That is just a fact and before last year it really had been many years where Moore was asked to start a meaningful game. Nice back-up at the end of the day but someone who can’t be depended on much.
Jay Cutler–This is clearly Miami’s #1 choice of who they want to sign. The issue is (from reports) Cutler isn’t sure he wants to come back. Now this could be Cutler and his agent playing hardball trying to get every last penny out of the Dolphins or he is being honest and his heart isn’t in it anymore and he just isn’t sure he wants to play. If Cutler doesn’t want to play Miami can’t beg him and force him back. That would be a colossal mistake and it will only end badly. We all know Jay Cutler is a flawed quarterback nobody is going to convince anyone of who Jay Cutler is. But, Jay Cutler also isn’t as bad as some fans make him out to be either. Sure he doesn’t smile and he always looks miserable, as I said a few days ago, who cares?! If he can stand in the pocket and throw the ball and make plays I don’t care if he is smiling. Cutler would be a one year Band-Aid option for Miami and everyone knows that. Everyone knows he would only be on Miami’s roster for one reason and that is because Tannehill went down. Not to mention most of you fans who always say “In Gase We Trust” the first time you disagree with Coach Gase you are out there throwing him under the bus saying Gase is wrong, don’t sign Cutler. Can’t have it both ways people. If you trust Gase then trust him on his opinion about Jay Cutler.
Colin Kaepernick–The issue here is everything to do with off the field stuff and not on the field. On the field Kaepernick doesn’t turn the ball over often and he has been a quarterback who understands the role of being part of an offense where he is never asked to win games alone. In San Francisco the gameplan there was always run the ball and play good defense and Kaepernick just had to make the necessary plays in the passing game and wasn’t asked to win the game with his arm. If he was on this Dolphins team in 2017 he would have the exact same role. It would be a run heavy offense with Jay Ajayi and Kaepernick wouldn’t be expected to throw it 30-40 times a game. So it’s a fit scheme wise/mind-set wise of what he has done in the past. The two main issues are that for one he doesn’t know the offense and it could be a long learning curve for him to pick up the playbook and lingo. Second, the media circus it will create in Miami by him being there and causing a distraction. And being in a city with a heavy Cuban population is a recipe for disaster. How would Kaepernick do in a locker-room that has a Cuban player? Kaepernick’s defense of Castro is the issue not so much the kneeling when it comes to the Dolphins. These are all questions nobody has the answer to.
RGIII/Osweiller/Others–I am going to lump all the other options in right here and do some quick hits on them. Brock Osweiller is in Cleveland and his history with Gase. Cleveland would love to dump him and not have to pay him, problem is Miami probably doesn’t want to pay him because of his crazy contract. It’s an option because Miami could get him for literally next to nothing and a 7th round pick probably but will they want to blow their salary cap in doing so? Robert Griffin III is an interesting option as well. Positive with him is Miami can sign him cheap and not give up anything to get him. Negative is he is another guy who is always injured and can’t hold up to a full season. Plus if you sign RGIII then Matt Moore is your quarterback this year until he gets injured (probably a case of when not if) and then you hand the reigns to RGIII at that point. Not sure Miami wants to have Moore as their full time quarterback or the mindset he is our full time guy as RGIII wouldn’t be a threat to unseat him. If Miami goes the trade route then keep an eye on Eagles back-up QB Nick Foles and Matt McGloin. Philadelphia is the deepest team right now at the quarterback position and I am sure Philadelphia would move either for the right price. Issue is does Miami want to part with a draft pick (this would probably cost a 3rd or 4th rounder with conditions it jumps to a 2nd or 1st depending on how the player plays in 2017) to get a guy that they aren’t building around long-term. Guessing no but Miami may have no choice in the end.
The reason why the Ryan Tannehill injury is so gut-wrenching is because this team is ready to win this year and now they have a huge question mark at the quarterback position. The options I listed above are not great on any level and Miami might be hoping to catch lightening in a bottle with somebody. I don’t know what the right answer is and who is the right guy to go after but what I do know is who Miami does sign will tell the story of the 2017 season because the rest of the roster is very good.