Josh Rosen is Miami’s starting quarterback for the rest of the year. Unless he isn’t.
Coach Brian Flores said just last week that Rosen will be the guy for the balance of 2019. Then came Sunday; Rosen played poorly against Washington, and Flores made the switch back to Week One starter Ryan Fitzpatrick, who played well and nearly pulled off a come-from-behind win. After the game, however, Flores said he planned to stick with Rosen.
Then came Monday. As explained by Armando Salguero of the Miami Herald, Flores left the door open for a change back to Fitzpatrick.
“We’ll see what happens this week in practice,” Flores said. He also said that the Dolphins “have a good evaluation” on Rosen, which implies that he doesn’t need to play in order to allow the team to make a decision on whether he should be the guy in 2020 or beyond.
On one hand, this could be part and parcel of As The Tank Turns, an inherently clumsy process that entails victory from defeat, while trying to conceal the effort to not win. On the other hand, this could be Flores realizing the tease that is Fitzpatrick, who plays well just long enough to make a coach think Fitzpatrick is good before stinking it up, the FitzMagic to FitzTragic transformation that happens even more reliably than Jekyll to Hyde.
Regardless, the Dolphins aren’t going to pull themselves into contention, so at this point they may as well continue to take their lumps and enhance their draft standing for 2020. Whether it’s Fitzpatrick or Rosen or someone else, these Dolphins aren’t going to win many games. If any games.
And if that’s what the powers-that-be have decided to do in order to get their next Dan Marino, so be it. The NFL won’t stop them, and even if the fans flee for now they’ll come back if/when the team starts to win.
That’s the much harder part of tanking. Securing premium draft picks means nothing if they don’t have the infrastructure in place to select the right players and to develop them.