When Miami Dolphins’ quarterback Ryan Tannehill went down with an injury Sunday, all eyes turned to Matt Moore. Fans who chanted for the veteran early in the season will finally get their wish. Unfortunately for them, it won’t be pretty.
Sorry Matt Moore, Tannehill finally separated himself from the pack this season. Even if Tannehill isn’t the top of the NFL food chain, he gave the Dolphins the best chance to win. In the new offense, he’s had the best year of his career. With career a career best in quarterback rating, completion %, and yards per attempt he has the Dolphins looking like winners.
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But Moore isn’t Tannehill.
Opposing defenses have to account for Tannehill’s speed. Not only can he roll out and extend plays, he’s always a threat to take off running. Moore keeps the Dolphins stationary. At 32, Moore isn’t the oldest quarterback in the league but he’s sure to be a little rusty. Moore hasn’t been on the field for the Dolphins since Tannehill’s arrival other than preseason. Dolphins were quick to forget his 6-6 record in his last starting season.
Aside from this season, Tannehill hasn’t looked better than Moore. Until Adam Gase arrived Tannehill had yet to produce anything that resembled a winning season. A season Gase spend all offseason building. Now he has the challenge of turning Matt Moore into something resembling a winner in less than a week.
At his best, Moore threw for 2400 yards, 16 touchdowns, and 9 interceptions. Tannehill has thrown for 4000 yards in a season, Moore has 5400 total. Even in the preseason against backups Moore has been frustrating to watch. Too many drives came to a screeching halt as Moore too often tucked and ducked. Here’s hoping the line is at 100%. Nothing in his repertoire screams NFL starter and fans should be worried. The team still has more talent than they did his last year as a starter, but the pressure will be on playmakers like Landry and Ajayi to make something out of nothing.
Dolfans chanted “We want Moore” might be served a slice of humble pie. Maybe when they see a true game manager they’ll begin to appreciate what Ryan Tannehill has brought to the team. 5 seasons of taking hit after hit and getting back up for them finally will come back to haunt the team. Tannehill may not be the best quarterback in the league, but he’s the best available option for the Miami Dolphins.