Miami Dolphins 2019 Season Preview

Russell S. Baxter

Miami Dolphins 2019 Season Preview

By Lisa Johnson

Special to Pro Football Guru

The Miami Dolphins fired head coach Adam Gase after three seasons. After leading the team to their first playoff berth since 2008 three years ago in his first season on the job, Gase was let go after posting a 7-9 record. The team has moved onto former New England Patriots’ defensive coordinator Brian Flores. Flores served as linebackers coach and defensive play-caller during the 2018 Super Bowl run. On February 4, 2019, Flores was hired by the Dolphins.

Offense: On March 15, the Dolphins parted ways with their former first-round pick quarterback Ryan Tannehill, trading him to the Tennessee Titans, which paved the way for a fresh start at quarterback. The Dolphins then dealt for Arizona's former first-round pick, Josh Rosen, and then also added some veteran help in signing journeyman Ryan Fitzpatrick. Miami brought in offensive coordinator Chad O'Shea, who coach Flores said will work from the sideline with the group. As of press time, Flores has yet to name a starter for the 2019 NFL season. Fitzpatrick and Rosen have been locked in a quarterback competition since the start of the training camp in July.

Defense: The Dolphins were ranked 27th in the league in points allowed in 2018. Looking to improve, defensive coordinator Matt Burke was not retained by the team. Flores brought in Patrick Graham, who will be without two of Miami's premier pass rushers, Cameron Wake and Robert Quinn, who has since moved on. With Flores and Graham, the Dolphins are sure to see many new defensive schemes come their way. Safeties and cornerbacks will switch spots – safeties moving up to play linebacker, while defensive ends will roll back into coverage. This was observed several times in training camp, and it seems to be a major focus.

Special Teams: Anytime you mention these units, the first thing anyone should think about is long snapper, John Denney. He was signed by the Dolphins before the start of the 2005 season and has been an iron man. He has played in 224 consecutive games. Elsewhere, Miami is very happy with placekicker Jason Sanders and punter Matt Haack. Sanders is coming off a rookie season in which he connected on 18-of-20 field goal attempts. Meanwhile, Haack averaged 44.6 yards per kick. The Dolphins’ new special teams coordinator is Danny Crossman.

Prediction: Right now, the Dolphins are in a rebuilding era. The next 2-3 drafts are going to be crucial for the franchise. There is talent on this team, and the organization needs to build around that young talent. They need to land that franchise quarterback and place those building blocks correctly. As for this upcoming season, look for the club to finish dead last in the AFC East. And as for the 2020 NFL Draft, don’t be surprised if the team is on the clock with the third overall pick.

Win-Loss Record: 3-13 (4th Place, AFC East)

Lisa Johnson (@LJ1303) is the Sports Director and the Miami Dolphins reporter for OurTurffb.com.

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