Yesterday, the Miami Herald’s Barry Jackson reported that Bill Lazor will have full control of Miami’s offense next season. While this doesn’t come as much surprise, it is a pretty big deal. With little to no Joe Philbin influence the Dolphins offense, it can be successful next year.
The last two years under Mike Sherman the Dolphins finished 27th in total yards in 2013 and 2012. In comparison, under Tony Sparano and his “ground and pound offense” the Dolphins finished 21st in 2010 and 22nd in 2011.
While it can be argued that those teams had an elite receiver in Brandon Marshall, Mike Sherman and Joe Philbin were brought in to create a high powered offense to keep up with the Patriots.
Now that Lazor will have complete control of the offense, here are a few obvious but important changes he should make for a successful 2014.
The Go/ Go-Go should already be out the door. While it did help the passing game it was not worth the cost of a subpar rushing attack by the Dolphins. They averaged 90 yards a game, in comparison Miami’s opponents averaged 124 yards a game and the Eagles LeSean McCoy averaged ten more yards than the Dolphins on his own.
Bill Lazor will also have to get Mike Wallace going in different ways, not only the deep ball. Mike Wallace and the entire receiving core needs to be able to move around the offensive line. Mike Wallace was first in targets and receptions on the right side of the line (he had 20 more targets than anyone else on the right side of the line).
Rishard Matthews, a player who belongs on the outside took 89% of his snaps in the slot. Mike Sherman refused to play to his own team’s strengths. Expect Matthews on the outside (if he makes the team) and Wallace to finally get some playing time in the slot or even the right side.
Ryan Tannehill should be on the move more often his well, not only on rollouts but on designed runs. In a league where the Russell Wilsons and RG3s of the world are highly successful, running quarterbacks cause troubles for defenses. Tannehill never had more than 5 runs in a single game. In comparison, Wilson had only six games where has less than 5 rushing attempts (2 of their 3 losses came when Wilson had less than 5 rushing attempts).
With Miami’s upgraded line, and a little creativity, the Dolphins could have a very strong offense in 2014. If the Dolphins want to be viewed as a playoff team, it will be because of Ryan Tannehill taking the next step in a quarterback friendly offense.