The biggest key to any NFL teams success is the quarterback position, Miami is no exception. If you were to ask 100 Miami Dolphins fans if Ryan Tannehill is the answer at the quarterback position I would bet that it would be a 50/50 split. If you ask why Tannehill isn’t the answer, the number one response would be the deep ball.
Should the blame be squarely on Ryan Tannehill for the ineptitude of the deep ball? Before I delve into that question let me share my thoughts on what makes the deep ball work.
Space to throw
A speedy wide receiver (DeSean Jackson)
A big body, go and get it wide receiver (Vincent Jackson)
A lot of people who support Tannehill say that the deep ball didn’t work because of Mike Wallace. I have good news and bad news after evaluating the first half of the 2014 season.
The bad news- it is my summation that Wallace wasn’t at fault for a lot of the misconnections in the deep pass game. I would put most blame on Tannehill for the deep ball woes. I’m not saying Wallace did everything on all deep balls to make a catch. No there were many instances of incomplete passes where a more complete elite receiver would have come up with the catch, but Wallace wasn’t the reason the passes were incomplete a lot of the time. That being said I do believe a bigger body receiver with a bigger catch radius would be a better fit for Ryan Tannehill in the deep game.
The good news- it’s not an arm strength concern with Tannehill. It is all things that he can fix with better footwork mechanics over time. A lot of times it was a matter of not setting his feet properly, not transferring his weight properly, or not opening his body enough. Also Tannehill would benefit with having a big body pass catcher, luckily with the addition of Jordan Cameron and DeVante Parker he finally has those big body, big catch radius, high point the ball receivers.
The good/bad news- the offensive line did not give Tannehill space a lot of times to step into a lot of deep throws. This is under good news because it is something that can be fixed. It’s under bad news because we will have to wait and see if we have fixed it enough.
This article will cover all the deep throws in the first part of the 2014 season. There will be a part two on this topic coming out later in the upcoming weeks.
This Film Analysis was completed by Matthew Knowles. Follow him on Twitter: @blueflamespcl
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