MIAMI (CBSMiami) – Miami Dolphins head coach Joe Philbin has made good on his promise to name a starting quarterback for the season before the third preseason game. Monday he named rookie Ryan Tannehill the starting quarterback for Week 1 of the regular season.
“This is the best decision we came at the given time,” Coach Philbin said. I didn’t have a lot of preconceived notion as to who it was going to be.”
Tannehill vastly outplayed Matt Moore in the preseason. Tannehill led a touchdown drive against the Carolina Panthers and might have done even more had several of his passes not been knocked down at the line of scrimmage.
The rookie looked like he was out of the starting competition until projected starter David Garrard went down with a knee injury. After playing well in a reserve role in week 1, Tannehill got the start in Week 2.
Tannehill was 11-23 for 100 yards and no touchdowns, but just as importantly, no interceptions. The rookie has yet to turn the ball over in the preseason. Tannehill also led a long drive that finished with a Daniel Thomas 1-yard touchdown run.
So far in the preseason, Tannehill is completing 56.8 percent of his passes (25-44) and has thrown for 267 yards. Overall, Tannehill has a quarterback rating of 82.3 and has been sacked three times.
Moore is 12-27 in the preseason for 136 yards and one interception. Moore’s quarterback rating in the preseason is 44.7. Still, Moore led the Dolphins to a solid finish last season and came into training camp in a battle with Garrard for the starting job.
Philbin reportedly met with both quarterbacks before announcing his decision to the media.
The move by Philbin likely cements Tannehill as the team’s starter for most of the regular season. Tannehill, much like Philbin, will be learning on the job this season which means there will be plenty of lumps ahead for both Tannehill and Fins fans.
Tannehill was selected with the eighth overall pick in the 2012 NFL Draft, becoming the Dolphins’ first-round quarterback selected since Dan Marino was picked in 1983.
He will join number one overall pick Andrew Luck and number two overall pick Robert Griffin, III as rookies who will be their respective teams’ starting quarterback.
Tannehill becomes the 17th quarterback to start for the Miami Dolphins since Dan Marino.