The Miami Dolphins have had 19 different starting quarterbacks since Dan Marino retired following the 1999 season, starting with Jay Fiedler to finishing with Ryan Tannehill. The new Miami regime will be searching for their 20th starting quarterback this offseason while possibly planning for the 21st starting quarterback and hopefully their long -term franchise quarterback for the years to come in the 2020 or 2021 NFL draft unless that number 20 ends being the guy of course.
So, the question is who? Who will be the 20th starting quarterback come that start of the 2019-2020 season? Head Coach Brian Flores and company will look for a quarterback to hold the fort down until they can get their mainstay quarterback in the coming years. Now, why can’t the Dolphins get their guy this year, you may ask? They may but it won’t Kyler Murray nor Dwayne Haskins because those guys will more than likely be gone by Miami’s pick at 13 and I don’t see Miami trading up with the new regime at this time, I think it’s more likely they stay put and draft ‘best player available’ or trade down gain assets and pick up ‘best player available’ at a later pick.
Now let’s look at the quarterback options for Miami going into next season through free agency, the NFL draft and via trade:
There aren’t many options in free agency at the quarterback position this offseason but two players stick out, one player as a one year stop gap as a rookie grows into his role and the other a two year stop gap as Miami preps to draft their franchise guy in 2020 or 21 unless of course, that stop-gap guy becomes “the guy”.
Teddy Bridgewater – New Orleans Saints: Most Dolphin fans prayed to have Bridgewater come in as the second quarterback last season to compete with Tannehill, only to watch him sign with New Orleans and Miami bring Brock Osweiler. This year Miami may look to bring Bridgewater in to be their quarterback for next couple of years until they get their guy in one of the next two drafts unless of course, the only 26 years young quarterback proves that he is “the guy” and they stick with him.
Ryan Fitzpatrick – Tampa Bay Buccaneers: The ultimate stop-gap quarterback. Fitzpatrick has proven time and time again that he deserves to be on a roster and a starting quarterback in spurts in this league, tossing 4 touchdowns in a few games just last year replacing Buccaneers starter Jameis Winston. If Miami is looking to just get by next year, not “tank” or make a real run next season – maybe Fitzpatrick can be their guy.
Though some in the Dolphins community are hashtagging #tankfortua and dreaming of Trevor Lawrence, Miami may look to draft a quarterback this year and though I believe this class may be weaker than in recent years – I still believe there is a few good ones in this class that are available to the Dolphins.
Drew Lock – Missouri Tigers: Many have compared Lock to Jay Cutler and that may give some Dolfans nightmares or cause to pause but Lock is not Cutler. Yes, he has similar talent and risk-taking instincts but to me, he has better upside and with the current coaching staff in place with Jim Caldwell coaching the quarterbacks – his ceiling is very high.
Daniel Jones – Duke Blue Devils: A lot of fans are down on the idea of drafting Jones, I am not on that boat. No, he doesn’t have elite arm strength but good enough, his touch and accuracy are on par, with a quick release and top end athleticism compares to division rival Bills quarterback Josh Allen. If Miami were to take Jones, I think this coaching staff can turn a lot of fans around on this kid.
Easton Stick – North Dakota State: Not a household name when it comes to this quarterback class but someone to watch in the mid-rounds. He may turn out to be a steal for the right situation and could be a long-term answer at the position if developed correctly. A respected leader on his team throughout his college career and talented passer with very good long ball touch with great athleticism as well, no one should be disappointed if Miami passes on a quarterback in the first and end up with Stick by the end of draft weekend.
Do I believe will make a trade that may deplete them of future assets? No, but if they were let’s look at who I think would be worth a look and maybe a second rounder.
Jacoby Brissett – Indianapolis Colts: This one is easy and not only because of the New England connection but because of his contract and talent. Brissett should be a starter in this league and could hold the fort as the starting quarterback for the Dolphins for a couple of seasons while they build the team and get their quarterback in a couple of seasons… Lawrence? – or maybe he ends taking that role of being the long term answer at the position, only being at the young age of 26 years old.
Josh Rosen – Arizona Cardinals: Many argued that Rosen was the number one quarterback last season and everyone seems to be in agreement that he would be the number one pick if he was coming out this year. New Cardinals head coach Kliff Kingsbury is connected (for obvious reasons) to Oklahoma quarterback Kyler Murray and now reports are Arizona is looking to ship Rosen in favor of taking Murray at the number one overall pick. You can’t judge a rookie quarterback on one year when the team was a mess to begin with a doomed coach at the helm. If Miami can get Rosen for anything other than a first, with a staff committed to developing him right with time on their side – it may turn out to be the steal of the offseason.