Training camp has officially started for the Miami Dolphins as they prepare for the upcoming 2022 season.

A busy offseason that included the additions of Tyreek Hill and Terron Armstead in the space of 24 hours has Dolphins fans dreaming of what the team can do in 2022.

However, does the team need to reign back expectations just a little bit? Here is why a tough AFC could be the kryptonite for Miami in 2022.

A Tough Conference To Predict

The competition has just gotten tougher this offseason. Miami has had two winning seasons in a row, with 19 combined victories. However, they have not made the playoffs in either season.

Russell Wilson, Davante Adams, J.C. Jackson, Khalil Mack, Juju Smith-Schuster, and Chandler Jones are some of the biggest names to make moves to teams in the conference, and that is just in the AFC West.

The AFC has 10 of the best 15 teams in the entire NFL; just who makes it to the playoffs, and who misses out? There is so much choice, yet only seven AFC teams make the postseason. The Buffalo Bills, Miami Dolphins, Baltimore Ravens, Cincinnati Bengals, Cleveland Browns (if Deshaun Watson plays), Indianapolis Colts, Tennessee Titans, Kansas City Chiefs, Las Vegas Raiders, Denver Broncos, and Los Angeles Chargers.

Miami has the luxury of playing the New York Jets twice a year, but even their division rivals have improved during the offseason.

It is likely that multiple teams will have double-digit wins and not make the playoffs next season. Miami will need things to go their way this season and for everything to click if they make the postseason since the 2016 campaign.

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The Elephants In The Room

Two key factors could play a crucial part in whether the Dolphins advance to the postseason.

The first is the quarterback situation. Tua Tagovailoa is facing a make-or-break campaign. The additions of the aforementioned Hill, as well as Cedrick Wilson, Raheem Mostert, and Chase Edmonds, along with the players already on the offense such as Mike Gesicki and Jaylen Waddle, mean that he no longer has any excuses.

Another factor is new head coach Mike McDaniel. Can he translate his coordinator success into being a head coach? Working alongside Kyle Shanahan since 2011, he has worked alongside one of the brightest young minds in the NFL. He will want to bring this style of offense that worked so well in San Francisco to the Miami offense. But as Bill Belichick will tell you, just because you worked under a brilliant head coach doesn’t mean you will automatically be a success in the same role.

Tua is widely expected to make a massive jump in 2022, and McDaniel has every component to be a very successful head coach in the league. They may both struggle in 2022, but even if they hit it off instantly, they could come unstuck when it comes to advancing from a very tough conference.

With an owner desperate to succeed, both individuals must ensure they hit the ground running.