Updated Odds on Which QB Will Start for the Dolphins in 2012

Scott AltmanCorrespondent IMarch 20, 2012

Updated Odds on Which QB Will Start for the Dolphins in 2012

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    The Miami Dolphins whiffed on Peyton Manning and Matt Flynn. It's embarrassing, yes. And there's ineptitude throughout the organization, yes.

    But everybody needs to calm down. 

    There's a hoard of other quarterbacks that the Dolphins can pursue. 

    And there's already a pretty good one on the roster. 

    There's 11 quarterbacks in this slideshow, and there are probably a few more unaccounted for. Hopefully, after you read this, your anxiety will subside. Let the offseason play itself out before you spiral into a total depression. 

Josh Johnson

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    The Dolphins might've missed out on the big-name quarterbacks, but there are other potential starters buried on depth charts around the league. 

    For example: Josh Johnson. 

    Johnson, a former fifth-round pick, has spent the last three seasons holding a clipboard in Tampa Bay. He boasts an uncanny combination of size (6'3") and speed (ran a 4.5 40-yard dash at the '09 Combine), but is inexperienced. 

    The Dolphins could sign Johnson, who is currently a free agent, but it'd be a total gamble. Unless Miami believes Johnson has starter-potential, then there would be little purpose in signing him. 

    Odds of Starting: 50 to 1

Colin Kaepernick

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    When the 49ers drafted Colin Kaepernick last year, Alex Smith was still a borderline bust who hadn't established himself as a reliable NFL starter. 

    Times have changed. 

    Smith led the 49ers within a botched punt of a Super Bowl berth, and the team is now offering him a contract worth $8 million per season. 

    This leaves Kaepernick and the Niners in a predicament. San Fran doesn't really have an incentive to trade Kaepernick, but if a team (like the Dolphins) makes an offer (say, a first-round pick, which I don't think Kaepernick is worth), then a trade becomes a plausibility—though a very slim one. 

    Odds of Starting: 50 to 1

Dennis Dixon

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    Dennis Dixon's skill set and career trajectory is nearly identical to Josh Johnson's. There's one distinct difference, though—Dixon has won games. 

    When Ben Roethlisberger was suspended at the beginning of the 2010 season, Dixon stepped in. He led the Steelers to a pair of victories before suffering a knee injury. 

    Dixon, like Josh Johnson, would be a total gamble, but he comes from a noble organization that knows talent. It's very unlikely, but the Dolphins should explore every option available. At the very least, Dixon could probably give Matt Moore some legitimate competition for the starting job.

    Odds of Starting: 35 to 1 

John Skelton

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    The Arizona Cardinals have $63 million invested in Kevin Kolb. But backup quarterback John Skelton, a former fifth-round pick, outperformed Kolb last season. 


    The Cardinals will probably host a quarterback competition during training camp, but the organization is definitely pulling for Kolb. They mortgaged so much of their future on him and benching him in favor of Skelton would be almost embarrassing. 

    If Kolb wins the QB battle, though, then the Cards could feasibly trade Skelton. This way, Kolb wouldn't have to look over his shoulder and Arizona could get some decent compensation in return. Assuming Skelton isn't too pricey, the Dolphins would be an obvious suitor. 

    Odds of Starting: 25 to 1

Joe Webb

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    The Vikings are faced with a nearly identical predicament to the Cardinals

    Minnesota drafted Christian Ponder with the 12th overall pick last year, but backup Joe Webb outperformed the rookie. The Vikings definitely want Ponder to succeed—they drafted him to be their franchise quarterback. 

    But, in all likelihood, they'll let Webb compete with Ponder for the starting job. If Ponders wins, then the Vikings could trade Webb (so Ponder won't have to look over his shoulder like Kevin Kolb).

    Webb is an exciting duel-threat quarterback who could draw Miami's interest. He's been groomed in a West Coast offense, which fits the criteria for the Dolphins. 

    Odds of Starting: 25 to 1

Brandon Weeden

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    Let's face it, the Dolphins are very far away from competing for a Super Bowl. Now that they've missed out on Peyton Manning and Matt Flynn, I suspect they'll draft a developmental quarterback. 

    Brandon Weeden is one obvious option. He's been repeatedly praised as "NFL ready," though more recent reports suggest that isn't the case. Plus, Weeden isn't the most ideal fit for the West Coast offense. 

    Accuracy and mobility are the most valued traits a West Coast offense quarterback can have, and Weeden is an immobile pocket passer.

    Odds of Starting: 15 to 1 

Kirk Cousins

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    Analysts are falling in love with Kirk Cousins. I can't blame them. What's not to like about the guy? He has a little bit of Tim Tebow in him.

    From a football standpoint, though, I'm still not totally sold. He struggled with accuracy at his pro day (but had a 63 percent completion rate in his three seasons as a starter), and played in a dink 'n' dunk offense. He's not particularly big (6'2", 215), nor does he have a particularly strong arm. 

    Cousins could be the second coming of Chad Pennington. Or, more realistically, a poor man's Chad Pennington. He makes sense for the Dolphins, though, and there's a fairly good chance they'll target him in the second round. 

    Odds of Starting: 11 to 1

Brock Osweiler

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    Like I said earlier, I expect the Dolphins to draft a quarterback that they can groom over the next few years. This team is not in a position to compete right now. By trading Brandon Marshall and cutting Yeremiah Bell, Miami is preparing for a rebuild. 

    If this is truly the case, then the Dolphins should draft Brock Osweiler. He's athletic and accurate. And he's 6'8". 

    Osweiler is a unique prospect who has the moxie of a franchise quarterback. He needs a few years to develop, but I can envision the Dolphins drafting him and rushing him into a starting role. 

    Odds of Starting: 9 to 1 

Ryan Tannehill

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    I'm terrified that the Dolphins will draft Ryan Tannehill with their first-round pick. I'm terrified that the team will be rattled by the fanbase's outrage, and they'll respond by reaching for a quarterback just to pacify it. 

    I'm not a scout, but I don't see how anybody can justify drafting Tannehill in the top 10. A few weeks ago, analysts were debating whether he'd even go in the first round. Now, all of the sudden, he's a top-five pick? I'd be wary of any player who skyrockets up draft boards like this. 

    Tannehill only played quarterback for two seasons at Texas A&M, and he wasn't wildly successful. He's a freak athlete with a big arm, and he definitely has great potential. 

    If the Dolphins could trade down and draft him, they'd have my blessing. But I can't get on board with drafting this guy so early. His connection with Mike Sherman and the organization's desperation for a quarterback make Tannehill a legitimate possibility, regardless.. 

    Odds of Starting: 5 to 1

David Garrard

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    David Garrard spent the 2011 season undergoing back surgery and playing golf.

    And, between 2008 and 2010, he posted a pedestrian 20-26 record as a starter. 

    At this point in his career, Garrard is a quality backup, but that's it. He might get a chance to compete for the starting job in training camp, but there's no way he'll dethrone Matt Moore. 

    Odds of Starting: 4 to 1

Matt Moore

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    Matt Moore led the Dolphins to six wins in their last nine games. He finished the season with a completion percentage north of 60 and a quarterback rating above 80.0. 

    Maybe he's not a star, but Moore gives the Dolphins a chance to win every week. And, let's face it, this team isn't ready to win a Super Bowl—they're not even close. Miami is wise not to spend big money on a quarterback just because they need one. This team needs to wait for the right quarterback to emerge.

    In the meantime, Moore will do just fine. In fact, with an entire offseason as the Dolphins' starter, he might elevate his game to a new level. 

    Odds on Starting: 2 to 1