Training camps are underway. The preseason has officially kicked off and the 2015 regular season is just weeks away. With that, let’s continue our look at the NFL, team by team, highlighting the good news, the bad news, and the overall impression.
Miami Dolphins (8-8, 3-3 Div.)
Good News – Ryan Tannehill is under center.
When the season opens, the Miami Dolphins will have the longest tenured quarterback in the AFC East starting for them. Weird right? Anyway, that’s not only a fun fact, it’s also good news for the Dolphins. Tannehill has slowly improved each of his three years in the NFL, throwing for more yards and more touchdowns each year. In 2014, he topped 4,000 yards for the first time in his career. Now he has Jarvis Landry, Kenny Stills, DeVante Parker, Greg Jennings, and Jordan Cameron to throw to. Tannehill will certainly be able to keep the Dolphins relevant this year.
Bad News – The front office learned nothing from signing expensive free agents.
In 2013, Miami signed wide receiver Mike Wallace to a five-year $60 million contract with $30 million guaranteed. What did they get in return? Two years and an average of 896 receiving yards and eight touchdowns. The Dolphins traded Wallace to the Vikings this year, and instead of avoiding high priced free agents, they signed defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh to a monster six-year $114 million contract. Not only is this another Mike Wallace type deal, this is very similar to another big time defensive free agent pick up. Albert Haynesworth came off a year in which he recorded 51 tackles and 8.5 sacks. Suh is coming off a year in which he recorded 53 tackles and 8.5 sacks. Haynesworth wanted a huge contract. Suh wanted a huge contract. Haynesworth signed a seven-year $100 million contract. Suh signed the mega deal mentioned earlier. Haynesworth went on to become the biggest free agent bust ever. He lasted two seasons in Washington, playing in just 20 games and putting up 6.5 sacks. So far, these two storylines have been nearly identical. Will Suh follow in Haynesworth’s footsteps?
Let’s hope not.
Miami could have a passing attack to watch out for this year. They’ve got a quietly loaded receiving corps and a quarterback who looks ready to become elite. If Ndamukong Suh pans out, he and Cameron Wake will be a defensive force to be reckoned with. Unfortunately, they still have to deal with New England, a team that Ryan Tannehill is only 2-4 against. They have split their matchups the last two years, but Miami has a lot to prove before they can be seen as a better club than the reigning Super Bowl champs. Miami will likely go 10 and 6 and be in contention for a wild card spot in the playoffs.
Image from RotoProfessor