Since the Miami Dolphins were eliminated from playoff contention following their loss to the Buffalo Bills in final week of the regular season, the team has made it clear they are looking toward the future.
Miami made a significant jump from 2019 to 2020, just barely missing the playoffs with their 10-6 record, and head coach Brian Flores and General Manager Chris Grier have wasted no time in keeping the ball rolling with making improvements to the club.
Dolphins Active with Reserve/Future Contracts
Since Jan. 5 the duo has signed fourteen reserve/futures contracts, including eight offensive and six defensive players. Some were active for the Dolphins in 2020, some active on the practice squad and in the organization and others are new faces.
Flores, Grier Sticking with Tua Tagovailoa
Also, despite the NFL noise, Flores and Grier have both publicly said they’re satisfied with a majority of Miami’s coaching staff and their starting quarterback, Tua Tagovailoa.
“Tua, we’re very happy with. He’s our starting quarterback. He did a nice job this year coming in as a rookie with no offseason and the challenges of dealing with all that,” Grier said in Miami’s end of season press conference. (We’re very happy with him and looking forward to watching him progress…going into next year.”
Tagovailoa had a solid rookie year, playing in ten games, and throwing for 1,814 yards. The rookie averaged just more than 192 yards per game, despite only having two pass attempts in the first game he played. He also came away with 11 touchdowns on the season, with just five interceptions. Tagovailoa then ran for three TDs as well as 109 yards on the year. He started his career off with a 3-0 record, and went 6-2 before coming out in the game against the Raiders to an injury.
Flores Hoping to Keep Coaching Staff Intact
“Yeah, we expect everyone back. Hopefully you’re not jinxing me now. Last time I said that, we lost Karl Dorrell, we lost Pat Graham, so thanks,” Flores said laughing. “Hopefully not, though. We expect everyone back.”
The only coaching staff changes so far has been offensive coordinator Chan Gailey resigning (Jan. 6) after one season out of retirement, Miami mutually parting ways with defensive line coach Marion Hobby (Jan. 7), the Dolphins promoting Lemuel Jeanpierre as the offensive line coach after firing Steve Marshall (Tuesday) and naming Charlie Frye their QBs coach today (Saturday) in place of Robby Brown.
Defensive Leader Xavien Howard Stands Out Again
Finally, Miami also has to be happy with their defensive leader as well, cornerback Xavien Howard. He led the league in interceptions with 10. Unfortunately, the team allowed the highest third down conversion percentage on the season, not boding well when a game is coming down to the wire. The Dolphins made the most defensive acquisitions in free agency last season and could be active again this year when that window reopens in a few weeks.