For five seasons Ryan Tannehill served as the Miami Dolphins Timex watch at the quarterback position.
For those of us old enough to remember, Timex watches advertised their durability under the slogan “It takes a lickin’ and keeps on tickin’.”
I apologize for losing track of who actually took this photo, but here's a close-up of the impact on Ryan Tannehill's knee: pic.twitter.com/vpzBEGTuvA
— Jason Lieser (@JasonLieser) December 11, 2016
In other words, the brutal beatings Tannehill sustained behind the Dolphins turnstile offensive line finally led to a season-ending injury. A suspected ACL tear on his left leg, the one right-handed quarterbacks use to play and throw, put back up Matt Moore on the field on the same day his wife was scheduled to give birth to the couple’s third child. UPDATE @ 1 pm ET: Dolphins announce Tannehill has ACL/MCL sprains with no surgery required!!!!
We’ll know more about Tannehill’s injury and recovery in the coming weeks, but suffice it to say, the Dolphins should not rush their franchise QB back to the lineup for the start of the 2017 season. The Dolphins – aka Nick Saban – pushed Daunte Culpepper to return from a massive knee injury and he lasted all of four games.
As Tannehill’s arm and accuracy have improved, his ability to get outside the pocket and even run on designed plays, offer important assets to his overall game.
How will Tannehill recover?
That’s anyone’s guess, but Senior VP Mike Tannenbaum, who has smartly consolidated his power structure inside the front office, had better start thinking about QB options for 2017.
Big day for #Dolphins QB Matt Moore… and not because of Ryan Tannehill’s injury. His wife is scheduled to induce their third child today.
— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) December 12, 2016
QB DECISIONS AHEAD
Tannehill’s injury could affect the Dolphins draft strategy.
At this stage the Dolphins could finish anywhere from 8-8 to 11-5. Such a range would place Miami in the middle to lower-third of the Draft.
The 2017 Draft contains a large crop of quarterbacks. However, a consensus alpha-male has yet to emerge among NFL Draftniks.
Of the QB pool, a group of names remain consistent:
Deshaun Watson, Clemson,
Brad Kaaya, Miami
DeShone Kizer, Notre Dame
Mitch Trubisky, North Carolina
Mason Rudolph, Oklahoma State
Cal’s David Webb, Washington State’s Luke Falk make various lists and even garner consideration among the Top 5 at this position among some experts. A picture will emerge through the college bowl season as draft-eligible quarterbacks will receive top scouting attention on big stages.
History offers tons of examples where can’t-miss quarterbacks failed.
Luck, circumstances, opportunity and coaching can all add up to freak success. Consider the Dallas Cowboys: We learned Dallas coveted Michigan State’s Connor Cook in the 2016 Draft, however, the Oakland Raiders moved up to inexplicably snatch him away and the unfortunate Cowboys settled for a dude named Dak Prescott.
Of course, every NFL team receives constant reminders about Tom Brady’s sixth-round draft slot.
Dolphins scouts probably did not spend a good portion of the NCAA season focusing on quarterbacks.
We anticipate massive film study during the off-season as the Dolphins attempt to assess the current Draft crop and measure it against any veterans potentially available via trade or free agency.
The Dolphins will weigh player availability against Tannehill’s medical progress and also against their long-term plans for the future.
BE CAREFUL WHAT YOU WISH FOR
Ryan Tannehill with Mike Pouncey, Branden Albert, and Jarvis Landry after leaving the field with a knee injury. pic.twitter.com/JrDymSQUNJ
— mfr24 (@mfr234) December 11, 2016