Could a veteran quarterback be the right route for the Dolphins?
After a season of “tank for Tua” chants we are starting to get clarity on the 2020 draft class. There are concerns swarming around Alabama’s Tua Tagovailoa. Not only does teams have to worry about his hip, but now he may not even declare for the 2020 draft.
The Dolphins have shown what Brian Flores, Chad O’Shea and the coaching staff is capable of with a few wins. It meant Miami lost a chance at Heisman winner Joe Burrow, who will likely go to the Bengals first overall.
Our thoughts on the draft class have changed since week one. That is why it is important to let a season play out. Mock drafts have the Dolphins taking Tagovailoa, but he may need more than a year to recover. Brian Flores, as recently as Monday, said that his team is determined to win football games.
Flores has been asked, a couple of times, to talk philosophically about the fact that losing could be in best's longterm interests and how he reconciles that. Another reporter tried yesterday. "I don’t know whose narrative that is,” Flores said. "We’re trying to win every game."
— Barry Jackson (@flasportsbuzz) December 17, 2019
Miami could invest a valuable first round pick on a huge risk like Tagovailoa or reach at someone like Justin Herbert. Another thought that has flown through the thought tank of the fanbase (aka Twitter) is pursuing a veteran quarterback.
The Dolphins have moved the ball well with Ryan Fitzpatrick at quarterback. For the sake of this argument, let’s say Fitzpatrick is an average quarterback. We’ve seen a handful of 20-point games. We’ve seen what an elite receiver DeVante Parker is capable of, in an offensive that isn’t run by Adam Gase.
What if, instead of forcing a quarterback in the 2019 draft, the Dolphins move around to not only replenish picks for 2020 and solidify the roster with roughly five of the first 64 picks of the 2020 draft? Could the Dolphins roster a competitive team that is capable of returning to the hunt?
Fans threw around Cam Newton’s name. Newton made his money with his legs and his struggled with an ankle injury over the last two seasons. He is on the books for $18 million next year, which would be pocket change for a Dolphins team that will have over $100 million in cap space? However, Chad O’Shea needs an accurate quarterback that can make throws over the top and outside of the markers, making a 31-year-old Cam Newton a tough fit.
What about Tom Brady? He has history with just about everyone in Miami. A six-time super bowl champion and arguably the best quarterback of all time. Brady will be 43 years old next season and is currently trucking through one of his worst seasons as a pro.
Fast forward to today and the Detroit Lions have lost seven-straight games. Yes, Stafford was lost for the season in November, but he was balling out before the injury. Fitzpatrick has thrown for more than 280 yards four times this year. Stafford, on the other hand, has thrown for more than 340 yards four times this year. He finished with 19 touchdowns to just five interceptions through eight games.
Not only does Stafford share some of the traits of Fitzpatrick in terms of playing style, but the Lions may look to hit the reset button with a record of 3-10-1 and “sell the team” signs floating around the stadium on Sunday afternoon.
The best way to rebuild is to ship off a veteran quarterback and embrace a movement. They could speed up the process by engaging in trade talks with the Dolphins, who have a war chest of picks and can likely supply the best value. It is important to keep in mind that this doesn’t necessarily mean multiple first round picks or even a single first-round pick. Miami’s draft capital is more than most other teams.
Miami will draft a quarterback at some point in time. However, Brian Flores has proven himself in 2019 without much help on either side of the ball.
This is honestly insane pic.twitter.com/wv7wMZRBzM
— Fins (3-11) • Jazz (15-11) (@utahdolphin) December 15, 2019
A veteran quarterback like Stafford may be a good option to help stabilize the franchise being under contract through 2022. The move gives Miami’s front office enough time to find the right quarterback, and more importantly, remain competitive.
Miami may decide it doesn’t want to make a big more for a quarterback and remain with Ryan Fitzpatrick. He has done more than enough in 2019 without a lot of help. Not only does the locker room love him, but he has made the Dolphins a fun team.
Three QBs lead their team in rushing this season: pic.twitter.com/ZyzsuTVlkJ
— ESPN (@espn) December 15, 2019
Top 10 #FantasyFootball QBs over the last 5 weeks
Ryan Tannehill (4 games)
Who is going to win you a Championship?
— Keith Lott (@WeTlkFntsySprts) December 17, 2019
Running it back with Fitzpatrick and some shinny new toys from the draft. Miami will add some depth in free agency, which could be just what this team means. However, it is interesting to take off the realistic glasses. Especially when jumping into the Madden trade machine and looking at ways the Dolphins could build a team that could bring Miami a playoff contender.