With a steady start to his NFL career, Ryan Tannehill is catching the attention of some of the league’s most plugged-in people.
NFL.com senior analyst Gil Brandt recently joined The Finsiders to give an assessment of the rookie quarterback through the early part of the season and project his impact going forward.
After seeing plenty of positives early on, Brandt is sold on the rookie quarterback in Miami.
“I think that the Miami Dolphins hit a home run with the bases loaded,” said Brandt, the Cowboys’ vice president of player personnel from 1960-89.
The successes of Matt Ryan and Joe Flacco, both of whom immediately started as rookies in 2008, has, perhaps, changed the perception of how a first-round quarterback should be handled. Tannehill, one of five rookie quarterbacks starting this season, was expected by many to be brought on slowly, even if that meant spending an entire year backing up a veteran.
Through six weeks, though, Tannehill, aided by his knowledge of Mike Sherman’s system, looks as though he’s been taking complete command of the Dolphins offense.
“This is a guy that can be like Matt Ryan and can be the face of the organization. That’s really, really important today,” Brandt said. “A lot of people criticized them for picking him. ‘Oh, they picked him too high and he’s got to sit for a year and so forth and so on.’ You know, I don’t see anyone coming to forefront now and saying we made a mistake. All of the sudden everyone kind of likes him, myself included.”
Against Arizona in Week 4, Tannehill set a Dolphins rookie record with 431 yards, only one yard shy of the NFL record set by Cam Newton in 2011. He’s followed that up that performance with two consecutive wins (at Cincinnati, vs. St. Louis), breaking the 90 QB rating plateau in each game. That type of consistency has created plenty of hope that the progressing young quarterback can fill the franchise-quarterback void.
Brandt feels that, with Tannehill, the Dolphins may be on the path to consistent contention.
“This was a move that I think we’ll look back at 10 to 12 years from now and say this is the move that turned the Miami Dolphins around.”
The opinions, analysis and/or speculation expressed by The Finsiders Blog represent those of individual writers, and unless quoted or clearly labeled as such, do not represent the opinions, policies or desires of the Miami Dolphins organization, front office, coaches and executives. Writers' views are formulated independently from any inside information and/or conversation with Dolphins officials, including the coaches and scouts, unless otherwise noted.