Despite being drafted No. 8 overall in April, Miami Dolphins rookie quarterback Ryan Tannehill might be spending the entire 2012 season watching from the sidelines.
Throughout offseason workouts, the Dolphins’ quarterback of the future has struggled to adjust to the speed of the NFL. Even though he was only sacked seven times throughout the 2011 season as Texas A&M’s starting quarterback, Tannehill has taken too many would-be sacks during team practices and is having issues with reading coverages. On top of everything else, the rookie isn’t picking up the playbook as quickly as the Dolphins would like from a potential starter.
While Tannehill is slowly adjusting to the speed of the game, fellow Dolphins quarterback David Garrard is gathering some steam in the competition for Miami’s starting spot.
Due in large part to his impressive showings during OTAs and minicamp, Garrard has helped create some buzz as the likely starting quarterback for the Dolphins. The most-experienced quarterback on the Dolphins’ roster, Garrard has found a firm grasp of the new offense and shouldn’t too many issues feeding the ball to Miami’s offensive playmakers.
The only other quarterback currently in the mix is veteran Matt Moore, who started 12 games for the Dolphins last season. The incumbent passer came to Miami in 2011 after spending the first four years of his NFL career with the Carolina Panthers. It seems, however, that Moore might be headed for the No. 2 role if Garrard continues down the path he’s on.
The competition will continue between the two veteran quarterbacks while the rookie holds down the No. 3 spot. Unless Tannehill undergoes remarkable improvement between now and the start of the regular season, don’t expect to see him play in 2012 barring injuries.
Regardless of who is No. 1 and No. 2, it appears that Tannehill could be donning the redshirt and holding a clipboard for the entire 2012 campaign.
It might not be the ideal situation in fans’ minds, but it’s arguably the best option for the Dolphins’ young, raw quarterback.