This off season the Dolphins have a long list of things to accomplish to improve this roster. The Dolphins still need to figure out if they are going to tag Jarvis Landry, resign him or let him walk. The team also needs to figure out which pending free agents they are going to keep, if any. Most fans do agree for the most part about which positions need an upgrade and which one are good as they are.
The most disagreements come from the quarterback position. We already know that Gase is set with Tannehill as his starting quarterback of the future. I wrote an article about how his improvements will help him take the team to the next level, so I won't touch on that any further. What I will touch on, the backup quarterback position. I won't lie, the injury to Ryan Tannehill's knee is of concern. I have faith he will come back just fine with it, but there is a chance that an unforeseen issue occurs, then what? The Dolphins are set to repeat 2017 all over again? Gag me already.
What should the Dolphins do? I don't know if any of you have noticed, but Gase has made it a point in his career to adapt and overcome. He has made mistakes and corrected those mistakes to not let them happen again. I think he takes that same approach with getting a quarterback to play behind Tannehill. The Dolphins need to get a quality backup quarterback, and don't worry, I have 3 free agents and one trade candidate.
Free Agent Quarterback options:
Tyrod Taylor: Taylor is a quality quarterback, but he had been inconsistent in Buffalo and struggled when playing from behind. Regardless, he can run with the ball and make plays with his arms and legs. Taylor had been productive in Buffalo and doesn't turn the ball over often. He doesn't make contested throws and has an overall record of 8-10 in the division. Taylor's price tag may be a little high for Miami. That could be a lot to invest in the quarterback position.
Teddy Bridgewater: Bridgewater was finally active coming off that career threatening knee injury and we have yet to see if he has regained his form. If Bridgewater can come to Miami and pass a physical proving his knee is ready, then he can be a good option behind Ryan Tannehill. Bridgewater would certainly be a good fit in Miami's offense as he has all the tools. He come to Miami on a one year prove it deal, as most teams would fear his knee. Don't forget, he is from Miami.
Blaine Gabbert: Gabbert doesn't give many the warm feeling that a guy like Bridgewater or Taylor does, but he would come a at an affordable price and has experience as a starter. Sure, it would be more of Jay Cutler kind of signing, however, he could compete with a rookie and become the third string. As you can see, the list of free agent quarter backs isn't very deep.
Jacoby Brissett: I was a huge fan of Brissett when he was drafted in 2016. He has good size and athleticism to make things happen. He got lost on a bad Colts team, but all things considered, he did not do a bad job of quickly learning the playbook and taking control of the offense. He ended the season with 3,098 yards 13 touchdowns and 7 interceptions. The Dolphins would have to trade for him, however, he may be more polished than a quarterback they would get with a 4th round pick. (I'm estimating what it would take to get him).
Speaking of Draft picks, let's look at some quarterbacks I like in this draft to Miami.
Quarterbacks in the Draft:
Josh Allen (Wyoming): Relax, before you bite my head off, hear me out. I would not touch Josh Allen until the bottom of the fist (29-32 range) or into the second round. The more I think, the more I see Allen tumbling in this draft. He needs coaching, but I think he can be a good quarterback in the right system with the right coaching. I think he fits Gase's aggressive style.
Lamar Jackson (Louisville): I know, we are talking quarterbacks and I mention a "wide receiver". I'm joking, Lamar Jackson is a Quarterback and a damn good one at that. I love his ability to run with the football and continually make plays, which is nice, as Gase started using some RPO plays with Tannehill in 2016. I'm certain that a guy like Lamar Jackson gets the wheels turning of the options Gase would have with him. Jackson is a former Heisman Trophy winner and has been extremely productive at Louisville. 9,043 yards passing 69 touchdowns. 4,132 yards and 50 TD’ss. Lamar Jackson totaled 13,175 yards and 119 touchdowns in just three seasons as a starter! Those are insane numbers. Mike Vick like numbers, but a more polished passer.
Mason Rudolph (Oklahoma State): There are going to be mixed reviews for Rudolph, but he has confidence in his throws, much like Carson Palmer. He is less athletic than the first two quarterbacks I've mentioned, but he has been very productive at Oklahoma State. He has thrown for 13,618 yards and 92 touchdowns. That kind of production should not be overlooked. Rudolph needs to develop to play in the NFL, but bringing him into Miami gives him a perfect opportunity to sit for a couple of years and develop.
Kurt Benkert(Virginia): People have really started loving this kid's potential. Benkert showed his versatility as an athletic quarterback with a good feel of the pocket at the Senior Bowl. Many people have begun to put Kurt Benkert towards the top of their list of quarterbacks for this draft. He has good size at 6'4 215 and a similar skill set to that of Ryan Tannehill, which makes him a good fit in Miami.
Mike White (Western Kentucky): Here we go with another WKU quarterback (Brandon Doughty), except this quarterback is much different. The only comparison between those two, they went to the same school. White has good NFL size and really showed out in the Senior Bowl, completing 72.7% of his passes (8/11) for 128 yards and one touchdown. White has noticeably good footwork and climbs the pocket well. He has developmental traits and has enough athleticism to move around in the NFL.
Kyle Louletta(Richmond): Louletta had a good Senior Bowl showing, by completing 8/12 (66.7%) of his passes for 198 yards and 3 touchdowns with 0 interceptions. Louletta is a small school guy with decent size at 6'3 215. He is slight of frame and doesn't exactly have great arm strength. He may be more of a true back up in the NFL, but he may not be a bad option with the proper play calling for him. He has some developmental traits that can't be taught such as poise and leadership. He anticipates his throws well.
The Dolphins have some decisions to make for the quarterback position, however, I believe addressing the quarterback situation in the draft is the best way to go. Free agency is thin at quarterback, while the draft is full of developmental quarterbacks.
If it were up to me, I would draft one or two quarterbacks depending on how the draft falls. I would resign David Fales as he has shown some ability to be a decent back up option. I would also sign a free agent like Teddy Bridgewater on a one year prove it deal. That gives the Dolphins 4 or 5 quarterbacks going into camp. Let the best 3 or 4 wins. Maybe a late round rookie ends up on the practice squad.
Regardless, this is a situation that Dolphins need to address this offseason.