Joe Philbin today once again refused to publicly say Ryan Tannehill will start at quarterback for the Miami Dolphins on Sunday against the Oakland Raiders. It is the third consecutive day the coach has declined to state the obvious.
And less than two minutes after Philbin went that route, Tannehill came into a press conference and said he's starting.
"Taking the first snap of the game and playing the game," Tannehill said when asked if he knows his status.
So let me understand this: The coach has for days declined to say Tannehill is his starter. But he has told Tannehill he is the stater. And then Tannehill told everyone in a press conference he is the starter.
And this accomplishes what, Joe?
Tannehill said Philbin has a reason for his approach. Tannehill said Philbin has explained his reason to the player. But while Tannehill declined to give the reason, he obviously does not agree with it.
"Coach came to me and told me what he said and why he said it," Tannehill said. "He was clear with me on my standing and my position in the game. He has his reasons.
"He told me why and I asked him. You got to get that from him. He has his reasons."
But does Philbin's approach bother Tannehill?
"Honestly, yes," the quarterback said. "Does it feel good to deal with all the distractions that have been created? No. But that's life. You face distractions and you face adversity in life. You have to be able to handle it. You have to be able to fight through it and become a better player because of it. So here we are and we're getting ready to play."
Tannehill referred to a "bunch of distraction in the locker room" mostly "from the outside coming in. Guys having to deal with the distraction coming in. It's not a good feeling but he's been clear with me and I know where I stand."
Glad Philbin has been clear with Tannehill while he's also been successful at creating those unnecessary "distractions" the quarterback was talking about.