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Miami Dolphins: Offensive Preview – Building on Success

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Even with the same offense and coaches in place, the Miami Dolphins offense should look very different in 2017. Miami spent most of the offseason filling holes on offense while also keeping key components in place. So what difference does a year make when it comes to their new game plan?


If there is one message that has echoed throughout this offseason, its “attack” on offense. Ryan Tannehill has been given orders to let the ball fly and with good reason. There is not any slowing down this offseason by learning a new system. Instead, Tannehill will have the freedom to test his arm and confidence in his receivers. He will not have to worry about finding the right routes, hitting the right reads, or slowing down plays. This offseason he will not be handcuffed into playing it safe. By taking bigger chances, the offseason can be spent figuring out just how many gambles he can take. In addition, which ones will pay off come game day. With the freedom to attack, Miami’s offense could see a lot more big plays this year but also could result in a lot more mistakes.

Pound the ball

Coaches have already put a tall order on getting more out of Jay Ajayi and the run game. Not only are they working with Ajayi on pass plays, Adam Gase has a goal in mind of getting Ajayi 22-25 carries per game which put him at the 350-400 carries mark. Ajayi was no stranger to being a workhorse in college at Boise State but the Dolphins need to be careful of the long-term knee injury concerns. On draft day, Ajayi slipped all the way to the fifth round to the Dolphins due to concerns over a knee injury suffered in college. Miami either saw something other teams did not, or feel comfortable moving forward with his workload.

Spread the field

Miami has no shortage of weapons in 2017. Even with their stacked unit of DeVante Parker, Kenny Stills, and Jarvis Landry, they went out and drafted Leonte Carroo and Jakeem Grant last year and still were not satisfied. The Miami Dolphins also used traded back in the seventh round in 2017 to select Isiah Ford, who fell a bit on draft day from the fourth or fifth round projection. On top of receivers, Miami went out and found two veteran tight ends in Julius Thomas and Anthony Fasano who both add up to better blocking and receiving options this season. Miami should be able to throw the kitchen sink at opponents this year with a variety of different personnel, schemes, and routes to keep teams guessing. If they can master the up-tempo offense, it should give opposing defenses a headache.

The Miami Dolphins have been building and rebuilding their offense for, what seems like, forever. Now with their apparent franchise quarterback in place, a youth movement, and a player friendly competitive coach on their side they just might have the right formula. The Dolphins on paper could be one of the top offenses in the league this year, but they face a very tough schedule. Can they improve on last year’s success? On the other hand, will it be time to hit the reset button again?

Editor’s Note: This article can also be seen in our upcoming NFL Preview Edition.

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