Tannehill gives Tennessee a high-end backup for Marcus Mariota, who has yet to play a 16-game season through four years in the league. Meanwhile, the Dolphins are left with Luke Falk and Jake Rudock as the only quarterbacks on their roster, having failed to lure Teddy Bridgewater away from New Orleans. It's a safe bet the Dolphins select a quarterback at some point in the upcoming draft, and they also figure to take a look at veterans such as Ryan Fitzpatrick and Blake Bortles. As part of the trade, Tannehill agreed to reduce his 2019 compensation to $7 million, with potential to go up to around $12 million if he reaches certain incentives, Ian Rapoport of NFL Network reports. Given Mariota's inconsistent play and injury woes, it isn't too hard to imagine a scenario in which Tannehill eventually pushes for the top job. The Titans made a couple big additions on offense earlier this week, signing guard Rodger Saffold and slot receiver Adam Humphries.
This should come as no surprise, given Tannehill seems to have fallen out of favor with the new Dolphins' brass. Tannehill's contract, one that will pay him just over $51 million over the next two years, will likely give any prospective team pause, making it unlikely the former first-round pick is moved until well after the 2019 NFL Draft. The most likely course of action will be for the Dolphins to simply designate Tannehill as a post-June 1 cut, saving the franchise $18.7 million of cap space and freeing the former starting quarterback up to explore the open market.
Tannehill may be released during the offseason, Barry Jackson of The Miami Herald reports.
Scheduled for cap hits above $25 million in the final two seasons of his four-year extension, Tannehill would need to accept a pay cut to have any shot at sticking around in Miami. The contract will also make it difficult to work out a trade, as teams won't have much interest in acquiring the 30-year-old quarterback unless he verbally agrees to reduce his salary. With the Dolphins bringing in a new coaching staff and eventually a new franchise quarterback, the most likely scenario has Tannehill being released and hitting the open market as an unrestricted free agent. Possible fits include the Jaguars and Redskins, though he may end up settling for a backup job.
Tannehill completed 18 of 31 passes for 147 yards and two interceptions while also rushing twice for nine yards and losing a fumble in Sunday's 42-17 loss to Buffalo. He finishes the season with 1,979 passing yards, 17 touchdowns and nine interceptions.
Tannehill's combination of injuries and ineffectiveness rendered him a nearly useless fantasy commodity for most of the season. The Dolphins, who were lucky to even achieve their mediocre 7-9 record, will likely try to get out of the $26.6 million they owe their 2012 first-rounder next season, as no team would even give him half of that total on the open market.
With Miami sitting at 7-8 and officially out of the playoff picture, Gase would be warranted giving another signal-caller a chance due to Tannehill's mediocre (at best) play in 2018. The QB room currently is composed of Tannehill, Brock Osweiler and David Fales, though, so Gase doesn't have much choice with a .500 record on the line. Tannehill has fallen shy of 200 yards passing in six of 10 appearances this season, including his previous matchup with the Bills in Week 13, but he made up for it with three touchdowns in a 21-17 victory.
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