There is so much about the Miami Dolphins’ quarterback situation that we still don’t know.
Is Ryan Tannehill the guy? Some fans believe he can be but has been let down by bad coaching, a weak offensive line, a weaker running game, and the lack of weapons.
Others believe Tannehill is the problem.
The truth is somewhere in between: Tannehill doesn’t have the protection, his weapons could be better, and the offensive line and running game could be dramatically better.
With that in mind, the question of what to do at quarterback has come up this offseason, a question that only gets muddled when you consider the possibility that of the four top quarterbacks in the 2014 NFL Draft (Teddy Bridgewater, Blake Bortles, Johnny Manziel and Derek Carr), one (or more) could be available when Miami is on the clock.
If such a thing were to happen, it would be a blessing for Miami, but not because they need help at the quarterback position.
Miami’s real need is to bring in more young talent. They need linebackers, guards and tackles the most, while a tight end, wide receiver, running back and safety would be nice to have too.
With the amount of draft picks Miami currently has in 2014, it won’t be enough to find a fit for each of their needs.
The best thing the Dolphins could do would be to trade down, and with one of the four top quarterbacks available when the Dolphins pick at 19, this task becomes that much easier.
To coincide with that, Ryan Tannehill has shown enough potential to warrant a third year as starter. Whoever would dispute such a thing is clearly putting the majority of the blame in Miami’s last two games on Tannehill and not the rest of the team.
When you look at the 2013 season, Tannehill is responsible for a lot more wins than losses. Does Miami beat Cleveland in Week 1 without Tannehill? Maybe, but I wouldn’t count on that. In Week 2 the Dolphins defeated the Colts in Indianapolis thanks to a quick start by the Tannehill-led Dolphins offense.
Week 3 against Atlanta was a win due to Tannehill’s fourth quarter heroics, much like Week 14 against Pittsburgh and Week 15 against New England.
Let’s also look at the games where Tannehill gave the Dolphins a fighting chance: Week 5 against Baltimore comes to mind, as does their Week 12 loss to Carolina.
If you could blame Tannehill for a loss, the final two games would be losses I’d pin on Tannehill, but overall the Dolphins offense couldn’t get anything going. The line was atrocious in those two games, just like they were in the aforementioned contest against the Ravens in Week 6 and their first meeting with Buffalo.
Coaching had a lot to do with it their losses too, as predictable play-calling would wind up doing Miami in.
Tannehill has the potential and deserves another year, but he should get some competition. That competition can come later in the draft in the form of San Jose State’s David Fales, Eastern Illinois’ Jimmy Garoppolo, or Wyoming’s Brett Smith.
I’d even consider one of the top four quarterbacks, provided the draft pick comes in the second round, after a trade down in Round 1.
To use a first round pick on a quarterback would ultimately prove wasteful to a team with so many holes. A lot of teams need quarterbacks, and if they pass on one early in the first round, they might be willing to trade into that 19th pick to grab one.
Taking advantage of said team would be the wisest move the Dolphins could make when it comes to any of the top quarterbacks in the draft.
Follow Thomas Galicia on Twitter, @thomasgalicia.