By: Chip Turner
This is the second part of a retrospective covering the 21 QB Eras between Dan The Man and Tua Time. Without further ado:
15) The Tyler Thigpen Era:
Quick, can you remember which game Tyler Thigpen started for Miami in the 2010 season? Of course, you can’t. Nobody can. Thigpen started a game against Chicago on November 18 that year that has been determined to be the Fourth Most Boring Game In NFL History through a fictional study that I just completely made up.
16) The Matt Moore Era:
Matt Moore took over for Chad Henne during the 2011 season and played relatively well. While he only led the team to a .500 record, his gunslinger mentality brought an air of excitement to the Dolphins that Henne had not.
As a reward for his “pretty decent” play, the Miami Dolphins kept Moore on as Ryan Tannehill’s backup, and from 2012 through 2015, they paid him over 13 million dollars to throw the ball 30 regular season passes. Many people (I included) pointed out that this equated to $433,333.33 per drop-back, and really wished we had Matt Moore’s job.
This was until January 8, 2017, when we all decided “Okay, maybe we don’t want Matt Moore’s job.” While starting a playoff game for the injured Tannehill, Matt Moore dropped back, rolled to his right, threw a pass, and the Steelers' Bud Dupree hit Moore so hard that the Dolphins immediately handed him another couple million dollars to play through the 2017 season out of sheer guilt.
17) The Ryan Tannehill Era:
The Miami Dolphins drafted Ryan Tannehill in the first round of the 2012 NFL Draft. Before Roger Goodell left the podium, the entire fan-base had already divided straight down the middle, and everyone started arguing about whether or not he was any good and pontificating about how stupid the opposing view was. For years, the argument raged, facts blending with opinion, until eight years later, the Ryan Tannehill debate has boiled down to the point where both sides agree on the following statement:
“Ryan Tannehill was a human who played QB for the Miami Dolphins for most of 2012-2018.”
That’s it. That’s all we can agree on.
Ryan Tannehill has moved on to Tennessee and enjoyed tremendous success. The Dolphins fan-base immediately celebrated his career resurgence by dividing straight down the middle, arguing about whether or not he’s any good and pontificating about how stupid the opposing view is.
18) The Jay Cutler Era:
In 2017, Adam Gase showed the rest of the world how smart he was when he threw 10 million dollars at Jay Cutler to keep him from retiring. Jay Cutler said “Okay,” and started 14 games for the Dolphins that year, pretty much doing exactly what he was paid to do and not one iota more. Some people vilify Cutler for this, but I’ve always found the entire situation more amusing than anything. YOU OFFERED JAY CUTLER TEN MILLION DOLLARS. What did you think was going to happen?
19) The Brock Osweiler Era:
In 2018, Adam Gase showed the rest of the world how smart he was when he gave Brock Osweiler a million dollars to back up Ryan Tannehill. This decision was based not only on Osweiler’s tremendous success at acquiring high-salaried contracts, but also because he is very tall. Osweiler started a handful of games for Miami and continued making money. He also established definitively that Adam Gase simply is not a very good coach. Fortunately, nobody told the Jets about this, and they clearly were not paying attention.
20) The Josh Rosen Era:
I really have nothing bad to say about Josh Rosen and wish him the best in his future endeavors. However, his time with the Miami Dolphins was about as inspiring as the previous sentence.
21) And finally, we come to the end of this list. A polar opposite to the Josh Rosen era…
The Ryan Fitzpatrick Era:
There will be far more wonderfully written and impactful words about Ryan Fitzpatrick’s tenure with than these…but Fitz made watching Miami Dolphins football a joy again. He simply radiated infectious joy. A leader on and off the field, he gave the team everything he had, every single game.
And when his Era ended this past week, it was a bittersweet reminder that with age, eventually that isn’t enough. Eventually a point comes where everything you have simply isn’t enough to keep a team progressing toward the eventual goal of a championship.
As the 22nd Quarterback AD (After Dan) takes the field next Sunday, we all hope that the Tua Era lasts quite a bit longer than the previous 21. We hope that Tua Time lasts quite a long time.
Please welcome Chip Turner to PhinManiacs and please check him out on Twitter @ChipTurnerPA