Dec 6, 2020; Miami Gardens, Florida, USA; Miami Dolphins middle linebacker Kyle Van Noy (53) warms up prior to the game against the Cincinnati Bengals at Hard Rock Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports

Reports: Dolphins to release LB Kyle Van Noy in cap move

The Miami Dolphins have informed linebacker Kyle Van Noy that he’s going to be released, ESPN and NFL Network reported Tuesday. The expected move will save the team $9.75 million in cap space.

Van Noy, 29, was one year into a four-year, $51 million deal he signed with Miami in March 2020 with $30 million guaranteed. The Dolphins will incur a $4.125 million dead cap hit this season.

Van Noy registered 69 tackles in 14 games (13 starts) last season with six sacks and 10 quarterback hits. He had two forced fumbles and two fumble recoveries.

Van Noy notched 16.5 sacks in three-plus seasons with the New England Patriots after two-plus seasons with the Detroit Lions, who drafted him in the second round (No. 40 overall) in the 2014 draft.

–Field Level Media

Dec 20, 2020; Indianapolis, Indiana, USA; Houston Texans quarterback Deshaun Watson (4) passes the ball against the Indianapolis Colts in the first half at Lucas Oil Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Trevor Ruszkowski-USA TODAY Sports

Deshaun the Dolphin? Miami favored to acquire Texans’ QB

With Deshaun Watson reportedly telling new coach David Culley that he has no intention of playing for the Houston Texans again, the Miami Dolphins are favored to be the quarterback’s next NFL destination.

The Dolphins have an interesting trade piece in 2020 first-round pick Tua Tagovailoa and are the +250 favorites by SportsBetting.com to land Watson this offseason. They are narrowly ahead of the Denver Broncos and New York Jets at +300.

The Broncos with Drew Lock and the Jets with Sam Darnold are each evaluating their quarterback situation this offseason and are viewed as potential landing spots for veterans on the move. However, neither team is among the four that Russell Wilson’s agent reportedly told ESPN his client is willing to go to if traded by the Seattle Seahawks.

Watson reportedly met with Culley late last week and reiterated his desire to be moved by Houston.

Among his issues with the franchise, Watson was unhappy with the trade of wide receiver DeAndre Hopkins last year and with not being consulted on the hiring of a new general manager this offseason.

However, the team has been steadfast that it will not trade Watson.

Watson has thrown for 14,539 yards and 104 touchdowns in four seasons since the Texans selected him with the 12th overall pick of the 2017 NFL Draft. He has also rushed for 1,677 yards and 17 scores.

Other teams expected to be in the Watson sweepstakes by SportsBetting.com include the Carolina Panthers (+600) and the Chicago Bears, Washington Football Team and Philadelphia Eagles, each at +1200. The Panthers’ odds have shortened from +1200 when the sportsbook installed Watson trade odds in January.

With Wilson’s developing situation in Seattle, the Seahawks’ odds have shortened from +10000 to +5000 to acquire Watson.

Deshaun Watson next team odds:
Miami Dolphins +250
Denver Broncos +300
New York Jets +300
Carolina Panthers +600
Chicago Bears +1200
Washington Football Team +1200
Philadelphia Eagles +1200
San Francisco 49ers +1500
Dallas Cowboys +1500
New England Patriots +2000
New Orleans Saints +2000
Las Vegas Raiders +2000
Jacksonville Jaguars +3000
Minnesota Vikings +4000
New York Giants +4000
Cleveland Browns +4000
Atlanta Falcons +5000
Seattle Seahawks +5000
Tennessee Titans +5000
Pittsburgh Steelers +6600
Los Angeles Chargers +7000
Cincinnati Bengals +7000
Arizona Cardinals +7000
Baltimore Ravens +7000
Tampa Bay Buccaneers +10000
Buffalo Bills +20000
Green Bay Packers +20000
Kansas City Chiefs +50000

The Detroit Lions (Jared Goff), Indianapolis Colts (Carson Wentz) and Los Angeles Rams (Matthew Stafford) are not being offered as potential Watson destinations as they have agreed to acquire new starting quarterbacks in trades that cannot be made official until the league year begins next month.

–Field Level Media

Jan 3, 2021; Orchard Park, New York, USA; Miami Dolphins quarterback Tua Tagovailoa (1) calls a play in the huddle against the Buffalo Bills during the first quarter at Bills Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Rich Barnes-USA TODAY Sports

Dolphins to operate with co-offensive coordinators

Eric Studesville and George Godsey were named co-offensive coordinators of the Miami Dolphins on Tuesday.

The in-house candidates were position coaches for the Dolphins last season and were promoted to replace Chan Gailey. The 69-year-old Gailey resigned on Jan. 6.

Gailey was coaxed out of retirement before the 2020 season to replace Chad O’Shea.

Head coach Brian Flores filled the offensive coordinator role for the third time in three seasons in Miami.

As tight ends coach, Godsey also assumed an increased role with the Dolphins as a sideline tutor for quarterback Tua Tagovailoa last season.

Studesville was the team’s running backs coach last season.

The Dolphins did not announce how play-calling would be handled or if the coaches are being divided into running game and passing game coordinators.

During the Senior Bowl last week, Flores allowed both assistants to call plays for one half of the draft prospect all-star game.

–Field Level Media

Jan 3, 2021; Orchard Park, New York, USA; Miami Dolphins quarterback Tua Tagovailoa (1) warms up prior to the game against the Buffalo Bills at Bills Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Rich Barnes-USA TODAY Sports

Report: Dolphins commit to Tua Tagovailoa as QB

Despite an up-and-down rookie season, Tua Tagovailoa will remain the Miami Dolphins’ No. 1 quarterback heading into next season.

Dolphins coach Brian Flores made the announcement Thursday in an interview with ESPN.

“A lot of attention gets paid to Tua, but I thought he made a lot of improvement over the course of the season,” Flores told ESPN. “I’m excited about the future with him. He’s a young player, talented player, bounced back from the hip (injury he sustained in college).

“I think this is a big offseason for him. That Year 1 to Year 2 jump will be important, like it is for all rookies.”

The comment echoes those of Miami general manager Chris Grier, who said after the 2020 season, “Tua, we’re very happy with. He’s our starting quarterback.”

The No. 5 overall pick in the 2020 draft out of Alabama, Tagovailoa went 6-3 in nine starts this season. Twice he was replace midgame by the club’s former starting quarterback, Ryan Fitzpatrick, who fell short in relief against the Denver Broncos on Nov. 22 but guided the Dolphins to a come-from-behind win against the Las Vegas Raiders on Dec. 26.

Fitzpatrick had a 4-3 mark as a starter in 2020.

The split duties didn’t cause any friction in the locker room, Flores told ESPN.

“Anyone who saw the Dolphins this year saw we were a tight-knit group and I think that’s still the case,” Flores said. “The idea that there is any kind of fracture is overblown. I thought there was a lot of support throughout the locker room.

“My message to the team has been to ignore the noise and the people inside the building are going to tell the truth to you. Without all the information, how do you make any determination about what’s going on?”

Tagovailoa, 22, completed 186 of 290 passes (64.1 percent) for 1,814 yards and 11 touchdowns. He was intercepted five times.

“We learned that he’s healthy,” Flores said. “He still has a lot of his mobility. He’s accurate. In the Arizona game, he brings us back in the fourth quarter. He brought us back in the Kansas City game. He also didn’t play as well in other games. He had some bright spots and not-so-bright spots. That’s the life of a rookie.

“If he continues to learn, study, stay healthy, get stronger, work on his footwork and his eye progression and pick up where he left off, then I think we’re going to be happy with his improvement.”

Fitzpatrick, 38, finished 183 of 267 (68.5 percent) for 2,091 yards and 13 TDs with eight interceptions. During a 16-year NFL career that has taken him to eight clubs, Fitzpatrick has a 59-86-1 record as a starter. In 165 total games, he has a 60.7 percent completion rate with 223 touchdown passes and 169 interceptions.

The Dolphins finished 10-6 this season, the best record of any NFL team that failed to make the playoffs.

–Field Level Media

Dec 26, 2020; Paradise, Nevada, USA; Miami Dolphins head coach Brian Flores wears a face mask in the second half against the Las Vegas Raiders at Allegiant Stadium. The Dolphins defeated the Raiders 26-25. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Dolphins, Panthers staffs named for Senior Bowl

Coaches for the Miami Dolphins and Carolina Panthers will work the 72nd rendition of the Senior Bowl later this month.

The contest will be held Jan. 30 at Hancock Whitney Stadium on the campus of South Alabama in Mobile, Ala.

The Senior Bowl typically selects two teams picking high in the draft whose coaching staffs remain intact. The Dolphins own the Nos. 3 (via the Houston Texans) and 18 overall picks in the 2021 NFL Draft, while the Panthers have the No. 8 selection.

“The entire Miami Dolphins organization is excited to take part in this year’s Senior Bowl,” Dolphins coach Brian Flores said in a statement. “In this unique run up the draft, the Senior Bowl will be a great opportunity for our coaches and personnel department to interact with these players for a full week. We look forward to with working these prospects as part of this premier event with a tradition of featuring top tier talent.”

Panthers coach Matt Rhule said he is also looking forward to the opportunity.

“We’re thrilled to coach at the Senior Bowl,” Rhule said. “Every year, Jim Nagy (Senior Bowl executive director) and his staff put together the best showcase of college talent in the nation, and we’re really excited to lead and get to know a team of this year’s top draft prospects.”

Last year’s Senior Bowl featured Los Angeles Chargers quarterback Justin Herbert, Panthers defensive back Jeremy Chinn and Pittsburgh Steelers wide receiver Chase Claypool, among others.

Top alumni from the game in recent years included first-round quarterbacks Baker Mayfield (2018), Josh Allen (2018) and Daniel Jones (2019).

–Field Level Media

Aug 26, 2020; Miami Gardens, Florida, USA; Miami Dolphins quarterback Tua Tagovailoa (1) talks with offensive coordinator Chan Gailey (R) during training camp at Baptist Health Training Facility. Mandatory Credit: Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports

Dolphins OC Chan Gailey resigns

Chan Gailey stepped down as offensive coordinator the Miami Dolphins.

Gailey, 69, was coaxed out of retirement before the 2020 season to replace Chad O’Shea and was rumored to be on the way out earlier this week.

“I want to thank Chan for all of his hard work and dedication in what was a unique year,” Dolphins head coach Brian Flores said in a statement. “He played an important role on the staff and in the development of our young roster. I wish him all the best.”

Flores needs a new offensive coordinator for the third time in three seasons in Miami. Among outside candidates, Flores could consider former Texans head coach Bill O’Brien. The coaches are familiar with one another from their days in New England as Patriots assistant coaches from 2009-11.

Tight ends coach George Godsey assumed an increased role with the Dolphins as a sideline tutor for rookie quarterback Tua Tagovailoa and could be the frontrunner among in-house candidates.

ESPN reported Godsey and running backs coach Eric Studesville were likely to be interviewed for the post.

On Tuesday, general manager Chris Grier declared Tagovailoa as the Dolphins’ starting quarterback in 2021.

Speculation in recent weeks grew around discussion the Dolphins might be forced to consider another quarterback with the third overall pick in the 2021 draft, which is considered to be rich at the position. Miami has the pick as a result of a trade with the Houston Texans for offensive tackle Laremy Tunsil.

–Field Level Media

Jan 3, 2021; Orchard Park, New York, USA; Miami Dolphins quarterback Tua Tagovailoa (1) drops back to pass against the Buffalo Bills during the third quarter at Bills Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Rich Barnes-USA TODAY Sports

Dolphins: Tua Tagovailoa is our starting QB in 2021

Miami Dolphins general manager Chris Grier said Tuesday that Tua Tagovailoa will be the team’s starting quarterback in 2021.

“We want to be clear that Tua is our starter and we’re very happy with his development so far,” Grier said in the Dolphins’ season-ending address alongside coach Brian Flores.

Tagovailoa went 6-3 as a starter since replacing Ryan Fitzpatrick in Week 8. However, twice Flores benched the rookie and replaced him with Fitzpatrick late in the season, and Tagovailoa threw three interceptions in the team’s must-win game last week against the Buffalo Bills. Fitzpatrick was unavailable after testing positive for COVID-19.

Miami missed the playoffs with a 10-6 record.

“Tua, we’re very happy with. He’s our starting quarterback,” Grier said. “He did a nice job this year coming in as a rookie with no offseason and the challenge in dealing with all that. Very happy with him and looking forward to watching him progress here over a [full] offseason going into next year. For us, not really talking about draft strategy, anything right now.”

The Dolphins hold the Nos. 3 and 18 picks in the 2021 NFL Draft.

The 22-year-old Tagovailoa completed 64.1 percent of his passes for 1,814 yards and 11 touchdowns against five interceptions.

Fitzpatrick, 38, is an unrestricted free agent in March.

–Field Level Media

Dec 26, 2020; Paradise, Nevada, USA; Miami Dolphins quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick (14) throws a pass in the fourth quarter against the Las Vegas Raidersat Allegiant Stadium. The Dolphins defeated the Raiders 26-25. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Report: Dolphins’ Fitzpatrick tests positive for COVID-19

Miami Dolphins quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick has tested positive for COVID-19, the NFL Network reported on Thursday.

Fitzpatrick did not practice on Thursday for the Dolphins, who will have rookie Tua Tagovailoa under center three days later in their regular-season finale against the host Buffalo Bills.

Miami has yet to publicly comment on the reason for Fitzpatrick’s absence.

Fitzpatrick, 38, has completed 183 of 267 passes for 2,091 yards with 13 touchdowns and eight interceptions in nine games this season.

Tagovailoa, who was the fifth overall pick of the 2020 NFL Draft, has thrown for 1,453 yards with 10 touchdowns and two interceptions in nine games this season.

Fitzpatrick relieved Tagovailoa in a 26-25 last-second win over the host Las Vegas Raiders on Dec. 26, making a key 41-yard pass while under pressure to set up the decisive field goal.

Quarterback Jake Rudock was signed on Thursday and he participated in practice and is expected to serve as the backup to Tagovailoa against Buffalo.

The Dolphins (10-5) will clinch a playoff berth if they beat the Bills (12-3) in Buffalo. A loss by the Cleveland Browns, Indianapolis Colts or Baltimore Ravens also would send Miami to the postseason for just the third time since 2001.

–Field Level Media

Dec 26, 2020; Paradise, Nevada, USA; Miami Dolphins quarterback Tua Tagovailoa (1) with Ryan Fitzpatrick (14) against the Las Vegas Raiders at Allegiant Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Win and in, but Dolphins still face long playoff odds

The Miami Dolphins remain the longest shots among the remaining teams battling for the AFC’s three wild-card spots despite being in charge of their own destiny.

Beat the Buffalo Bills on Sunday, and the Dolphins are on to the postseason.

Unfortunately for Miami (10-5), Buffalo (14-3) is still battling for the No. 2 seed in the AFC. That is contributing to the Dolphins being offered at -193 by PointsBet to make the playoffs — the longest odds among the five teams in the AFC wild-card picture.

The Tennessee Titans (10-5) have yet to wrap up the AFC South title, but can do so with a win over the Houston Texans (4-11) or a loss by the Indianapolis Colts. The Titans make the playoffs with a win or a Baltimore Ravens or Dolphins loss. That would leave Indianapolis needing to beat Jacksonville (1-14) and have the Dolphins, Ravens or Browns lose to get into the playoffs. The Colts can still win the AFC South with a win and a Titans loss.

The Ravens play Cincinnati (4-10-1) while the Browns face the Steelers (14-3). Cleveland’s path became easier with Pittsburgh planning to sit quarterback Ben Roethlisberger and start Mason Rudolph.

Odds To Make The Playoffs (PointsBet)
Baltimore Ravens -1429
Cleveland Browns -770
Los Angeles Rams -667
Indianapolis Colts -271
Chicago Bears -233
Miami Dolphins -193

Odds To Miss The Playoffs
Baltimore Ravens +850
Cleveland Browns +500
Los Angeles Rams +450
Indianapolis Colts +200
Chicago Bears +190
Miami Dolphins +150

The wild-card picture is a little clearer in the NFC.

The Rams (9-6) are in if they beat the Arizona Cardinals (8-7), while the Chicago Bears (8-7) can claim a wild-card spot with a win against Green Bay (12-3) or a loss by Arizona.

The Cardinals clinch a playoff spot with a win, while facing a Rams team that is expected to start undrafted rookie quarterback John Wolford. The Bears play a Packers team still trying to lock down the No. 1 seed in the NFC and a first-round bye.

–Field Level Media

Dec 26, 2020; Paradise, Nevada, USA; Miami Dolphins wide receiver Jakeem Grant (19) is tackled by Las Vegas Raiders cornerback Nevin Lawson (26) at Allegiant Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Report: Dolphins WR Grant (ankle) out vs. Bills

Miami Dolphins wide receiver Jakeem Grant will miss the team’s regular-season finale against the Buffalo Bills with a high-ankle sprain, NFL Network reported on Monday.

Grant sustained the injury during Miami’s 26-25 victory over the Las Vegas Raiders on Saturday.

The potential loss of Grant is significant for the Dolphins (10-5), who also could be without DeVante Parker yet again. Parker, who leads the team in catches (56) and receiving yards (677), has missed consecutive contests with a hamstring injury.

Grant, 28, has recorded 36 receptions for 373 yards and one touchdown this season. He also added another score on special teams.

Grant has 89 catches for 1,008 yards and five touchdowns in 66 career games since being selected by the Dolphins in the sixth round of the 2016 NFL Draft.

The Dolphins can earn a postseason berth with a victory over the AFC East champion Bills. They also can get in to the playoff field with any of the following: a Cleveland Browns loss to the Pittsburgh Steelers, a Baltimore Ravens loss to the Cincinnati Bengals or an Indianapolis Colts loss to the Jacksonville Jaguars.

–Field Level Media