The most significant questions facing the Dolphins in 2014?
Is Joe Phiblin capable of leading a turnaround? Is the offensive line going to be a wall or a stumbling block? And will quarterback Ryan Tannehill be good enough?
As Joe Philbin makes clear in my column, which appears in today's Miami Herald, the Dolphins are looking for steps of progress in three major areas from Tannehill.
They want better decision-making.
They want better accuracy.
They want more playmaking.
“There are really three things that I think about quarterback play," Philbin told me in an exclusive pre-training camp interview. "One is decision-making. I think decision-making ties into play speed. The better decision-maker you are, the quicker you make them and that ties in to the opportunities to make a tight throw or take the guy that’s open sooner to get him the ball in space and let him run a little bit. I think there’s room for development there."
Accuracy is number two. Getting the ball to Mike Wallace in stride rather than overthrowing it. Leading Brian Hartline on a slant rather than forcing him to make an acrobatic catch, which causes him to immediately fall down rather than run for 20 yards.
And the last thing is playmaking ability.
"Can you imagine what our offense would have been without our two-minute offense? We had a pretty good two-minute offense last year," Philbin said. "And [Tannehill} demonstrated in those situations he has a good feel for the game, good clock management. He can communicate effectively without taking a ton of time. He’s got playmaking ability.
"But even there, we’re looking for more. He’s got a great pair of legs on him and we’ve seen some of that. And so when you get a 15-yard run from the quarterback and all of a sudden you’re in pretty good field position even when you don’t have great execution, that’s great. He’s capable of some of that stuff.”
Three things to improve on, Ryan Tannehill.
It begins in training camp today.