Tannehill senses more will to win, less dysfunction in Miami


Dolphins quarterback Ryan Tannehill arrived in Miami not long after the team hired Joe Philbin. Which means that Tannehill had a front-row seat for plenty of in-fighting and dysfunction.

Now, it’s different. He credits the current coach for that.

“I think no matter what it is and who it is in the league, what head coach, I think the building kind of takes on his mindset and the way he goes about things,” Tannehill told reporters regarding Adam Gase, who’s starting his second year with the team. “That’s definitely true in this building. The fire he has and the competitive spirit, the will to win . . . I think you see a closer, tightknit building than we’ve had in the past.”

It frankly wouldn’t take much for the building to be closer and more tightly knit than it was, given the various tales of back-stabbing (and front-stabbing) that happened when Philbin, G.M. Jeff Ireland, and executive Dawn Aponte were trying (and failing) to get along.

Another important aspect of the current regime comes from the support Tannehill gets as he tries to establish himself as the leader of the team. While some quarterbacks can simply show up and take charge, most need support from the organization in order to do it properly. Tannehill is finally getting that support.

“I think Coach Gase has given me the freedom and the confidence to be myself and to lead in the way that I want to lead,” Tannehill said. “He has my back and we’re in this thing together. He knows how my heart is in this thing so he’s giving me the freedom to go out and lead the way that I want to lead. It’s been really fun for me. I think I’ve seen our team grow because of that.”

That growth was demonstrated by the team’s qualification for the playoffs a year ago. And while that may raise the bar in 2017, the Dolphins welcome that, in the same way they welcome being in the same division as the Patriots. Eventually, the rest of the league may have to welcome the notion that the Dolphins are a consistent contender, with a quarterback many have been ready to write off.

16 responses to “Tannehill senses more will to win, less dysfunction in Miami

  1. I think Adam Gase is the best coach that the Dolphins have had in some time and that is a positive for the team.

    On the other hand, the guy shopping for the groceries, Mike Tannenbaum, was the general manager of the Jets for six years and oversaw a steady decline until he was bounced out in 2012. I have my doubts about him guiding any team in the NFL to the promised land.

  2. burtmustin says
    “On the other hand, the guy shopping for the groceries, Mike Tannenbaum, was the general manager of the Jets for six years and oversaw a steady decline until he was bounced out in 2012. I have my doubts about him guiding any team in the NFL to the promised land.”

    You mean the guy who drafted five Pro Bowl players in that six period with the Jets, and without whom there is no way Adam Gase is head coach of the Dolphins today ? You talking about that guy ? Tannenbaum is a major reason why the arrow is pointing up for the Dolphins.

  3. The Dolphins were 6-10 in 2015 and had a fairly easy schedule in 2016. Let’s see them put together back to back winning seasons before we start declaring them consistent contenders.

  4. The Dolphins beat 1 winning team in 2016 – the Steelers.

    That was a game in which Pitt was 6-1 and the Dolphins were 2-4 and likely not a team Pitt feared or prepared much for.

    8 of their regular season wins were against teams picking in the top 10 of the draft:

    Bills x2
    Jets x2

    The other win was against the 7-8-1 Cardinals.

    This year is likely more of a reality check; although the Bills/Jets are still teams they should go 4-0 against.

  5. Thank you for saving me the time lordcornelius.. I was just about to state the same exact info.

    I would only add that they needed OT to beat the Brownies and that they qualified for the playoffs after KC beat Denver in that week 16 (Dontari Poe TD pass) laugher in KC… then were promptly defeated in the Wild Card game vs. the Steelers.

    Let’s take the “consistantent contenders” thing a bit slower and more realistically.

  6. Miami is truly headed in the right direction and the real credit should go to Stephen Ross who worked tirelessly trying to get the right people in place while backing up everything with his money……including the stadium.

    The front office and the coaching staff are truly working together and it shows on the field.

  7. Ok. A team with a rookie coach starts 1-4 and then wins 9 of the next 11 games in spite of having NINE starters out with injuries. The probably kept the Bills from being a playoff team.
    But the question is who did they beat?
    For the last 11 games they beat nine of the 11 teams they played. Regardless of who you play that is very difficult to do in the NFL.

  8. Don Shula & Jimmy Johnson are the only 2 good head coaches that Miami has ever had until Adam Gase arrived and that’s THE ONLY reason that this team has stunk for the last 15 years. This Miami team has had some good players for a long time, but poor management, bad roster depth & crappy coaching kept this team in mediocrity. With Gase here that’s over now !!!!!!!!!!

  9. The Dolphins organization have failed Tannehill through his first 4 years in the league. He’s been a good QB on a bad team. No, they finally have a coach who can get the most out of this team. Tannehill is a good QB with flashes of greatness, a solid player. This team is heading in the right direction, finally.

  10. Let’s not pretend Miami was the only dysfunctional team in the AFC East. There have been two teams coached by Rex Ryan, the Nick Saban fiasco, the wild cat, spygate, bullygate, deflategate, and I’m sure I’m missing something.

    When people say Miami didn’t play anyone during their room last season, don’t forget the Pat’s have played in the AFC East, they’ve probable had the easiest path to the playoffs for the past 15 years of any other team in the NFL.

  11. I’m not saying they beat strong teams last year but the schedule stuff is often misguided. People say they have a tougher schedule this year because of the number of playoff teams from last year on it. With that logic, this year’s schedule is actually easier than last year’s schedule since they faced more 2015 playoff teams last year than they will face 2016 playoff teams this year. My point is that teams change from year to year. A strong team last year is not necessarily going to be strong this year. That said, after watching this team since their heyday, I can say this is one of the strongest teams they have had in years. The coach is probably the best coach they have had since Shula actually innovated. They may lose more games than last year or they may win more. Nobody knows. I can assure you that this team has a different attitude and will not be a pushover. They learned how to win close games last year. This year we will see if they can take that next step forward.

  12. The Dolphins have drafted, signed, and traded for numerous receivers, tight ends, running backs, O-linemen, have brought in all manner of coaches to help Tannehill, given him millions of dollars, and that’s them failing him? Holy hell, maybe just accept that he’s a mid-tier at best starter on a at best decent team and stop making excuses for Tannehill when he comes up short yet again.

  13. Schedule:
    I’ll say this.
    Look at the Pats 2016 schedule.
    Then look at the Fins 2016 schedule.

    They were identical with the exception of one team.
    (They each played a corresponding AFC west team)

    Pats went 12-2. Fins went 10-4. Against identical schedules.
    I don’t hear Pats fans taking that cake walk of a schedule into consideration for their teams auccess.

    The Fins aren’t the Pats, but they are becoming a contender.

  14. Leave it to “bjchit” to smear the best QB Miami has had since Dan Marino (okay, okay, Chad Pennington was good for a year…)

    And kuddos to Florio, again, for saying what is obvious, and what I have been tired of hearing from ESPN, Football Outsiders, and nearly everyone else–“Eventually, the rest of the league may have to welcome the notion that…with a quarterback many have been ready to write off.”

    Thanks you, Florio, for NOT writing off Ryan Tannehill like everyone else has (except Armando Salquero)

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