2019 Dolphins: Trust the Process

sodenj5

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Really? I don't follow college football enough to know, but those guys barely played before this year, didn't they?
Well this class was eyed as a bad QB class since last year’s draft. I’m pretty sure Haskins and Herbert were viewed as the main QBs because Murray had been drafted by the A’s and said he was only playing one season of football.

Herbert obviously went back to Oregon. Jones is probably the one that came out of left field this year. His value was inflated by this year’s poor QB class.

Someone will rise from relative obscurity this season for sure, just like Jones this year, just like Baker Mayfield last year.
 

rymflaherty

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I think the idea that the 2019 QB class was weak was the prevelant wisdom for some time...it’s why the Giants got so much crap for taking Barkley, even with him proving to be a dynamic player, because the prevailing wisdom was that this wasn’t the year to be banking in drafting your “franchise QB”.

Didn’t help that most of the war Herbert was considered the top guy, but than he went back to school.

This year really reminds me of 2011, when people talked themselves into Locker, Ponder and Gabbert being first round talents.
Though, maybe not as bad, because at least Denver got Lock in the 2nd round. I actually thought they were going to reach and take him in the 1st, so that actually worked out well for them.
 

rymflaherty

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I don’t get a lot of chances to say this,, so I’m going to take the opportunity here...
I absolutely love that they re-signed Howard.
And I’m even more impressed with the way they structured the deal, so they are paying for what should be his prime years, and before they need to worry about paying a QB top dollar. Love it.
 

sodenj5

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I don’t get a lot of chances to say this,, so I’m going to take the opportunity here...
I absolutely love that they re-signed Howard.
And I’m even more impressed with the way they structured the deal, so they are paying for what should be his prime years, and before they need to worry about paying a QB top dollar. Love it.
A cost controlled QB is probably the most valuable asset in football. Whether it’s Rosen, who is even cheaper than most rookie QBs, or someone Miami drafts in the next year or two, they will be paying under market value at the position for the next 3 seasons minimum.

Agreed that it makes a ton of sense to pay for what should be his absolute prime and front loading the deal. You can squabble over whether or not he’s a top CB, but he’s absolutely a top 10, probably top 5 CB, and guys like Ramsey and Lattimore will be getting deals that make this look like a bargain.
 

sodenj5

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Day 2 of training camp is in the books and there are a couple of early headlines developing:

Fitzpatrick is clearly head and shoulders better than Rosen right now.

Bobby McCain appears to be making the transition to free safety. Seems to be getting the bulk of snaps there with the starters.

Kalen Ballage appears to be the early favorite for starting/early down running over Kenyan Drake.

The most interesting thing to me is probably McCain and how it translates to Minkah as well. Minkah was an elite slot defender last season as a rookie. Like, without hyperbole, one of the best in the league. He also struggled a bit when he played as a true FS. I think McCain’s move has more to do with trying to maximize Minkah’s ability and versatility as a slot defender/box defender. I’ll be interested to see how McCain fares in a safety role, because neither Reshad Jones or T.J. McDonald played well as a FS last year.
 

sodenj5

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Lol. That’s 100% accurate. I’d say somewhere in between play very well and get paid.

It’s a double edged sword because we know what Fitz is. He’s at times an average to above average starter with cavernous valleys of terrible play. Extremely streaky, but a proven veteran.

Rosen right now is clearly not at his level, but that’s irrelevant. It’s whether or not Rosen can be better in the long term. The 2019 season is meaningless in the grand scheme of things.

So does Flores play the vet and send the message to the team that they’re legit trying to compete and (attempting to) win? Or does he play Rosen because getting a look at him for as many games as possible is a bigger piece of this franchise’s future than Ryan Fitzpatrick or 2019?

In my opinion, they roll with Fitz until he inevitably turns into a pumpkin and Rosen takes over and plays out the rest of the season.


Also, Miami signed Allen Hurns to a one year deal, which again points towards trying to compete and not tanking.
 

tims4wins

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You KNOW he is going to light up the Pats in week 2. I'm not sure if I would peg the odds of a Miami win at 99.0% or 99.9%. And then by the time of the game in NE, he won't be the starter.
 

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I thought so too, but his failures may have had more to do with "not being Dante Scarnecchia" than being objectively bad. He deserves a lot of credit for Marcus Cannon.
 

Super Nomario

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I thought so too, but his failures may have had more to do with "not being Dante Scarnecchia" than being objectively bad. He deserves a lot of credit for Marcus Cannon.
I agree with your first point but not your second. Googe was given a raw deal*, considering the Patriots traded their best lineman (Logan Mankins) right before his first season. He righted the ship by the end of the year. 2015 was a mess, but injury to Solder was a big factor there; Wendell and Stork got hurt, too, Connolly retired, I don't think Vollmer was 100%, and Andrews, Mason, and Tre' Jackson were rookies. It was a young, banged-up unit, and struggled about as much as you'd expect.

OTOH Cannon had his worst years with Googe. He was competent at RT down the stretch in 2013 (when Scar was still there) and then a mess at both G (2014) and T (2015) under Googe. Scar returned in 2016 and Cannon immediately became a quality RT.

(The * is because I don't know how much input DeGuglielmo had on some of the personnel moves. Maybe he was telling Belichick that Jordan Devey and Cannon were just as good at G as Mankins, that Stork could alter the snap count, etc.)
 

sodenj5

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Interesting because I thought Googs was the de facto OLine coach/assistant anyways.

He has a history with Miami. He did objectively fine work with Indy last season, but was also working with more talent than Miami presently has.

It’s a meh from me.

Edit: tweet from RapSheet. Says Flaherty was let go because of his inability to convey the new system effectively to the lineman.

 

sodenj5

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Flores said today in his presser what pretty much every single person has said and seen thus far:

Ryan Fitzpatrick is currently leading the QB battle.

For Flores, he can’t come out and preach about competition and then hand the job to Rosen if he’s clearly the inferior option presently.

I still don’t take this as an outright indictment on Rosen. He’s learning a new scheme and being behind a 14 year veteran is nothing to be ashamed of.

Rosen said today that he’s been learning to ID the Mike, which is something he’s never had to do. They’re clearly putting a bunch on his plate, and there will be a time when he’s been able to digest it and practice to the point where he can go out and play without thinking, but Fitz is clearly caught on to the scheme quicker and has seen and done things that Rosen simply hasn’t.
 

NortheasternPJ

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Flores said today in his presser what pretty much every single person has said and seen thus far:

Ryan Fitzpatrick is currently leading the QB battle.

For Flores, he can’t come out and preach about competition and then hand the job to Rosen if he’s clearly the inferior option presently.

I still don’t take this as an outright indictment on Rosen. He’s learning a new scheme and being behind a 14 year veteran is nothing to be ashamed of.

Rosen said today that he’s been learning to ID the Mike, which is something he’s never had to do. They’re clearly putting a bunch on his plate, and there will be a time when he’s been able to digest it and practice to the point where he can go out and play without thinking, but Fitz is clearly caught on to the scheme quicker and has seen and done things that Rosen simply hasn’t.
Not sure if you'd heard this before, but he did go to Harvard. It's never been really brought up on broadcasts before.

I'm not sure if Flores will work out or not, but the early signs are good in Miami. No sense running out there and getting Rosen killed or having Rosen run an offense he clearly can't handle.
 

Super Nomario

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Flores said today in his presser what pretty much every single person has said and seen thus far:

Ryan Fitzpatrick is currently leading the QB battle.

For Flores, he can’t come out and preach about competition and then hand the job to Rosen if he’s clearly the inferior option presently.

I still don’t take this as an outright indictment on Rosen. He’s learning a new scheme and being behind a 14 year veteran is nothing to be ashamed of.

Rosen said today that he’s been learning to ID the Mike, which is something he’s never had to do. They’re clearly putting a bunch on his plate, and there will be a time when he’s been able to digest it and practice to the point where he can go out and play without thinking, but Fitz is clearly caught on to the scheme quicker and has seen and done things that Rosen simply hasn’t.
Fitzpatrick played a year with Bill O'Brien in Houston, so I imagine there's a lot of carryover there. O'Brien worked with Chad O'Shea for three seasons, 2009-2011, and was actually his predecessor as WR coach for the Patriots. George Godsey was his QB coach in Houston; he's TE coach now for the Dolphins.

(I saw Flores was hiring all the ex-Pats, but I didn't realize he brought in old friend Tiquan Underwood as an offensive assistant)
 

sodenj5

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Since Flores’s statement on Fitzpatrick leading the QB race, it seems that Rosen has closed the gap in a significant way over the last week, culminating with Miami’s mock scrimmage they held on Saturday night.

Fitzpatrick has been inconsistent throughout the practices, and Rosen has seemingly gotten consistently better.

At the scrimmage, the beat writers said that Rosen looked probably the best he’s looked with the Dolphins thus far while Fitzpatrick again looked inconsistent.

If you’re a Dolphins fan, this has to be really encouraging. People were ready to bail on Rosen after one week of poor practices. The more reps he gets, the more he gets comfortable with his responsibilities on offense, the smoother he’s going to look.

I don’t think that there’s any question that Rosen’s physical talents are better than Ftizy’s. It’s going to be a matter of whether or not he’s capable of mentally processing the new offense and still adapting to NFL level defenses. It seems like he’s steadily progressing in that area every day, and that is a very good thing for Miami.



The other big take away from that scrimmage was Xavien Howard’s quote on Preston Williams.

He said he’s going to be special and thinks he will be a #1 WR in the NFL some day. And when you take that quote alone, it’s doesn't seem like that big a deal, but think about some of the talent Miami has had at WR the last few years. Stills, Parker, Landry, Wilson, Grant. Parker, for all of his lack of mental toughness and ability to stay healthy, has a first round pedigree and all of the physical tools in the world.

Howard has never gone out of his way to call any receiver special, but when he goes out of his way to say he thinks an UDFA is going to be a #1 WR on the league, that’s high praise coming from one of the best CBs in the league.

For anyone unfamiliar with Preston Williams, he transferred from Tennessee to Colorado State and got into some trouble off the field when he sat out his transfer year. He put up huge numbers for State, but then had disappointing workout numbers and went undrafted. He’s immensely talented, and has been one of the biggest surprises of training camp thus far. I’d say his chances of making the team are pretty high presently.
 

sodenj5

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Miami signed former 1st round pick Robert Nkemdiche and placed him on the PUP List.

Nkemdiche is obviously immensely physically talented, but has never put it together on the field nor has he stayed healthy thus far in his career.

Nkemdiche is also a former teammate of Laremy Tunsil, and apparently Dolphins brass checked with Tunsil before moving forward with Nkemdiche.

I think Nkemdiche would be an excellent fit as a 3-4 end in this scheme. He likely won’t be able to contribute for a while as he recovers from his ACL tear, but he has more upside than any D Lineman on the roster presently.
 

sodenj5

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Dolphins first half vs Atlanta:

Preston Williams looks like Xavien Howard knows how to scout WRs. He made two, maybe three ridiculous catches and looked like a man amongst boys vs Atlanta’s second stringers.

Miami’s OLine looked bad. Tunsil sat out, but the interior was getting roasted by ATL.

Rosen had a good first drive, evading pressure several times, and leading a TD drive, then had a terrible pick into a Cover 2 zone that he never should have thrown. Bounced back and ran a nice 2 minute offense to close out the half, including a couple of dimes to Williams. Obviously mixed results, but when he had a clean pocket, he looked very good. I would say his stat line looks worse than he performed.

Defense looked so-so. Xavien Howard looks like he’s in mid season form. Miami’s CBs behind Howard and Rowe look suspect. Some very sloppy tackling from Minkah tonight, missing a couple, including one for a big run. That stuff has to get cleaned up.
 

Kenny F'ing Powers

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This would be Preston Williams’ 4th ridiculous catch of the night.

View: https://twitter.com/WingfieldNFL/status/1159641371101130752?s=20
Great catch, but I don't see the same thing that guy sees regarding Rosen. Thats a bad throw in the redzone. Lots of risk on that ball. Corner had good inside coverage and just missed the read on making an INT. A better corner makes a play on that.

Edit: Will say it was a fairly "safe" throw considering it was cover-1, but I think the execution was lacking a little.
 
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sodenj5

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View: https://mobile.twitter.com/RapSheet/status/1164180156543582208?ref_src=twsrc%5Egoogle%7Ctwcamp%5Eserp%7Ctwgr%5Etweet


Miami is signing Jakeem Grant to a 4 year extension.

Color me pleasantly surprised. I think Grant still has a ton of potential that remains relatively untapped. He needs better consistency catching the ball, but his speed and his ability to both create separation and be used both inside and outside make him a very versatile piece in the offense that was starting to blossom last year before he got hurt.

Not to mention he’s also one of the top kick and punt returners in the league presently.
 

sodenj5

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I think that both Patriot and Dolphins fans alike might find this interesting:

View: https://twitter.com/Safid_Deen/status/1164743296138108929?s=20


For those unaware, Flores made headlines after playing 6 or 8 Jay-Z songs in a row at the start of practice after Kenny Stills both publicly called out Stephen Ross for hosting a fundraiser for Trump and Jay-Z for partnering with the NFL.

His explanation was that he wanted to challenge Stills because he felt he hadn’t been playing up to his potential throughout training camp and practice so far.

Flores’s comments about living through exactly what Stills is protesting came across as incredibly genuine and authentic and it’s probably something that he didn’t need to say, but because it had blown up a bit, went out of his way to say he supports Stills and all that protest.

I like Brian Flores the person. I also like that he isn’t afraid to challenge a veteran he feels isn’t performing. Did it need to be done in a somewhat public manner? Probably not, however if Stills can’t practice well because of the playlist, then they have bigger problems on their hands than the music selection.
 

RIrooter09

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How is he “challenging a veteran” by publically trolling him with music? It’s a petty, douchebag move that he’s trying to justify after the fact.
 

PC Drunken Friar

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So he is saying that his "living it" makes it ok to publicly troll his own player? There are some things you shy away from when trying to motivate a player. And then to come back and say that the player has sucked so far this year... insinuating that his mind is elsewhere or something?
 

sodenj5

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I think he’s 100% implying that Stills hadn’t been fully focused on the field throughout training camp. Whether that’s accurate or not, I don’t know. Possible as a veteran he was just trying to coast to the regular season.

Flores reportedly spoke to Stills before playing the music, then addressed the team after it became a story, saying he supports Stills’ cause. Also commented about it publicly after the game.

I see both sides of the coin. I leaned towards it being more of a motivational/mental test with Stills, but as a dude that’s probably been dealing with racial slurs and death threats for the better part of three years, he could probably use a break in practice.
 

Clears Cleaver

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this team is FINALLY doing what I've advocated for the last five years. dump every single veteran who won't be a useful player in three years when they might be competitive again. They got rid of a lot of deadwood this offseason and it sounds like Alonso, Stills, Reshad would all be dumped for mid-round draft picks. I'd call the Colts today and offer up Rosen or Fitz. The goal is 1-15, get as many picks as is possible, and try to find a bunch of cheap, useful pieces on both lines.
 

Pxer

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this team is FINALLY doing what I've advocated for the last five years. dump every single veteran who won't be a useful player in three years when they might be competitive again. They got rid of a lot of deadwood this offseason and it sounds like Alonso, Stills, Reshad would all be dumped for mid-round draft picks. I'd call the Colts today and offer up Rosen or Fitz. The goal is 1-15, get as many picks as is possible, and try to find a bunch of cheap, useful pieces on both lines.
Loading up and hitting on a draft like that has long lasting benefits. When the Patriots have had drafts like that with lots of picks and they make some of the right ones, it makes your team good for several years and then you can unload some of the good players for further draft capital as they near FA. It's crazy more NFL teams don't do this. It's so short sighted.

Of course, none of it matters unless you have a franchise QB.
 

Clears Cleaver

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Loading up and hitting on a draft like that has long lasting benefits. When the Patriots have had drafts like that with lots of picks and they make some of the right ones, it makes your team good for several years and then you can unload some of the good players for further draft capital as they near FA. It's crazy more NFL teams don't do this. It's so short sighted.

Of course, none of it matters unless you have a franchise QB.
agreed. and there may be two potential franchise QBs in the next two drafts. I'd tank this year and next.
 

sodenj5

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this team is FINALLY doing what I've advocated for the last five years. dump every single veteran who won't be a useful player in three years when they might be competitive again. They got rid of a lot of deadwood this offseason and it sounds like Alonso, Stills, Reshad would all be dumped for mid-round draft picks. I'd call the Colts today and offer up Rosen or Fitz. The goal is 1-15, get as many picks as is possible, and try to find a bunch of cheap, useful pieces on both lines.
McDonald was a bit of a surprise, but it’s completely understandable. He was always redundant with Reshad Jones. Signing him to an extension about 3 weeks into his first training camp was a gigantic misstep.
 

InstaFace

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Flores will never buy a drink in a bar I’m in but I think he’s screwing the pooch here.
Seems a little excessive to feel the need to chase him out of a public drinking establishment, but I guess all we really needed against Philly was one lousy stop.
 

sodenj5

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Miami has a lot of cap space, and assuming that they aren’t giving away a first or a second rounder, I would be fine with Clowney. Houston has no leverage.

In terms of fit, Clowney would be a perfect scheme for for what Miami is trying to do. The question is does Clowney want to stay long term (reports are that Miami isn’t his preferred destination but he’s open to getting traded there) and does it make sense to add a guy who has a microfracture knee surgery on his resume and will likely command a large contract.

If he walks, Miami might end up with a 3rd round comp pick. Depending on what the trade is, they might end up giving away roughly 16 million and breaking close to even on picks. Not a bad gamble to take on their part.
 

WheresDewey

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I don't see how Clowney makes sense for the Phins. They're probably at least three years away from contending, and that assumes either Rosen or next year's draft pick is a legitimate QB.
 

sodenj5

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I don't see how Clowney makes sense for the Phins. They're probably at least three years away from contending, and that assumes either Rosen or next year's draft pick is a legitimate QB.
Assuming that Rosen or a 2020 QB were to be the long term solution, Miami is paying peanuts at the QB position until 2023 at the very least.

Miami’s defense might be legitimately pretty good, especially if you add Clowney into that mix. Not Super Bowl contender good, but they have a ton of young talent on that side of the ball.

The offense needs a massive boost to the O Line. The skill position players aren’t terrible. The O Line will be the death of the 2019 Dolphins, for sure.

Let’s say Miami keeps Rosen. They have 12 draft picks in 2020, including 2 2nds and 2 3rds next year as well as a huge amount of cap space. They can rebuild their O line and add some talent on both sides of the ball pretty quickly next offseason.

I think if Rosen is the answer, Miami is a legit playoff contender in 2 years. If he isn’t and they draft a QB in 2020, that pushes the timeline out to 3 years.

Clowney is 26. He, along with guys like Tunsil, Xavien Howard, and young guys like Minkah, Wilkins, and Jerome Baker, will all still be very much in their prime in that time frame. Even if they trade for Clowney and he walks in 2020 and signs somewhere else, Miami would be basically paying him 16 million and get a 3rd round comp pick. So they would likely come close to breaking even on draft comp and just flush some cap space, which they have to burn.

At face value, it might not make a ton of sense because Miami is supposed to be tearing it down, which they have to an extent, but I think Grier has positioned them where they can turn the roster over pretty quickly in the next year or two and be a good team faster than most expect.
 

Super Nomario

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I don't see how Clowney makes sense for the Phins. They're probably at least three years away from contending, and that assumes either Rosen or next year's draft pick is a legitimate QB.
There's no reason for a rebuild to take at least three years. Three years is a lifetime in the NFL. Three years ago the Raiders and Giants were 11+ win teams, the Eagles, Bears, and Panthers were fourth-place teams, and the Rams went 4-12. Any plan that is schduled to take longer than two years should be viewed with suspicion. (It may take longer than two years, but it shouldn't be planned to take longer)

My skepticism with the Clowney move is that the Dolphins have for years overrated the importance of acquiring star players, whether we're talking about Suh or Mike Wallace or trading up for Dion Jordan, etc. But this might actually be a rare chance to get one who is a good scheme fit and might come for 50 cents on the dollar (at least before his extension).
 

WheresDewey

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Thanks for the answers. I can see paying for the comp pick if they have the money. But Clowney is good enough to hurt where they pick in the 2020 draft, which might make a big difference if Rosen isn't the answer.
 

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Two newsworthy bits:

Fitzpatrick named the starter in week 1. Not shocking. I personally think Rosen flat outplayed Fitz, but if they don’t feel like Rosen is fully in command of the offense yet and he needs a few more weeks to wrap his head around everything, I’m fine with that. Flores seemed to allude that was the case.

If they hand the ball to Rosen, there’s no turning back. You can’t go back to Fitz at that point, so I don’t mind them taking a few extra weeks. All signs would seem to point to Week 6, after Miami’s bye. Miami’s schedule the first 4 weeks are brutal. Wouldn’t be at all surprising to see them turn to Rosen after that stretch.

Second:

Smoke continues to swirl around Clowney and Tunsil. The latest rumor has Miami turning down Clowney plus a first rounder for Tunsil, asking for another high pick (2020 2nd or a 2021 1st) as well.

My take is that Tunsil is probably one of the most valuable, non QB trade chips in the NFL. A borderline elite LT, still cost controlled for 2 more years. For every Tunsil, there are 100 Jake Matthews and Greg Robinsons. Tunsil is going to be a Pro Bowl/All-Pro level LT for the foreseeable future, barring injury.

Even though that return would be insane, at least one of those high level picks would need to be an OT, and there’s no guarantee that player is as good as Tunsil.

I’m of the opinion that you can’t trade Tunsil, regardless of the compensation. You do that, the offensive line legitimately needs 4 new players, and this season is completely lost before it even starts.

I’m hoping they still find a way to trade for Clowney, and they don’t ship Tunsil off in any package.
 

ifmanis5

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Smoke continues to swirl around Clowney and Tunsil. The latest rumor has Miami turning down Clowney plus a first rounder for Tunsil, asking for another high pick (2020 2nd or a 2021 1st) as well.

My take is that Tunsil is probably one of the most valuable, non QB trade chips in the NFL. A borderline elite LT, still cost controlled for 2 more years. For every Tunsil, there are 100 Jake Matthews and Greg Robinsons. Tunsil is going to be a Pro Bowl/All-Pro level LT for the foreseeable future, barring injury.

Even though that return would be insane, at least one of those high level picks would need to be an OT, and there’s no guarantee that player is as good as Tunsil.

I’m of the opinion that you can’t trade Tunsil, regardless of the compensation. You do that, the offensive line legitimately needs 4 new players, and this season is completely lost before it even starts.

I’m hoping they still find a way to trade for Clowney, and they don’t ship Tunsil off in any package.
Well, Clowney and Tunsil were traded but just not for each other. Dolphins officially tanking this season?
 

axx

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If you're going to tank, this is the year to do it. Especially if you are betting this is Brady's last year. That's a really nice haul for Tunsil.
 

sodenj5

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2 firsts and a second. Miami now has 2 firsts, 2 2nds, and 2 3rds in the draft and are going to suck so bad that their first is going to be a top 10, probably top 5 pick.

They’ll also have 2 firsts and 2 2nds in 2021. They own next year’s draft with 3-4 elite QBs and if they want they can rebuild the line and manipulate the draft to get Trevor Lawrence in 2021. They’ve completely opened up the next two offseasons.

I’m not thrilled about completely burning it down, but if you’re rebuilding it, this is how it’s done.
 

Philip Jeff Frye

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So is Howard the next to go? Is there a single player on the roster today, other than maybe Rosen, who will be on the team three years now?
 

Clears Cleaver

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:beatit::beatit::beatit::beatit::beatit::beatit::beatit::beatit::beatit::beatit:

they finally...FINALLY are doing the right thing.
dump Fitz, Alonso. Keep Howard.

Then actually hire a front office that can draft talent.