The Dolphins are sitting at 3-3 and 9th in the AFC. So far the year has greatly exceeded expectations. Their defense has played well, ranking top 5 in opposing points per game, and Xavien Howard leads the league in interceptions with 4.
They have managed to beat the defending NFC champions 49ers and force a very good Bills team to a mere 3 point victory.
Tuesday, the Dolphins announced that QB and 5th pick Tua Tagovailoa will get the green light to start week 8 after their bye.
Tua took a few snaps in the final minutes against the Jets, but no one thought he would start this soon with the success that current starter Ryan Fitzpatrick is having. Fitzpatrick was reportedly heartbroken by the decision and thought that the Dolphins was his team to lead. It is sad for the 15-year journeyman out of Harvard. Throughout the years Fitzpatrick has been one of the most liked players in the NFL. In the 6 games he played this season, Fitzpatrick has thrown for 10 touchdowns and averaged 255 yards per game.
Unfortunately, this is a business and the Dolphins feel that if they want to make the playoffs they have to start Tua.
Fitzpatrick is serviceable, he is not the quarterback to lead you to the playoffs.
Just a pick after Tua was Justin Herbert out of Oregon. Another quarterback. Herbert has played amazing, ranking top 5 in yards per game and possessing a 107 passer rating. At the moment, many analysts have him winning the ROTY.
If Herbert is any indication that rookie quarterbacks can be elite, Tua can lead this team to the playoffs.
The next 6 games are where the Dolphins will need to win. Week 8 the Dolphins verse the Rams coming off a bye week.
The Rams are the better football team, but we know the Dolphins can play, and with extra time to prepare I could see the phins shocking everyone and winning behind Tua and a solid defense.
After the Rams, the Dolphins verse the Cardinals, Chargers, Broncos, Jets, and Bengals. Their combined win percentage is currently 0.358%
If the Dolphins can win at least 4 out of those 6 games they would be in a prime position to make a real playoff push.
Those first 6 games are so important for the Dolphins because they need all the momentum possible.
In their final 4 games, the Dolphins face the Chiefs, Patriots, Raiders, and Bills. Not the most favorable matchups.
We know the Dolphins are capable of beating the Bills as they almost did earlier this year. If the Dolphins could somehow win another game against the Pats or the Raiders, they would be 9-7 and have a good chance of making the playoffs with the new 7 team playoff format in place.
If Tua can be everything the Dolphins hoped and dreamed I believe Miami could squeeze into the wild card spot for the first time since 2016.