Who is Dolphins QB Matt Moore?
The Dolphins have had one of the most reliable back-up quarterback’s in the league over the past 5 seasons in Matt Moore. However with the recent injury of Ryan Tannehill, the 9 year vet will be asked to step in, shake off the rust, and show Dolphins fans that he is more than capable of helping Miami win.
Matt Moore began his career in Dallas where he signed on as an undrafted free agent after spending 2 seasons with Oregon State. He was cut after not making the roster and claimed by the Carolina Panthers. He started the final 3 games of the Panthers season but was never made the starter with Jake Delhomme and eventually Jimmy Clausen replacing him. He signed on with Miami as a free agent before the 2011 season.
After Henne went down with a shoulder injury in Week 4, Matt Moore stepped in and did a fine job for the Dolphins. He finished with a 60.5% completion rate, nearly 2,500 yards, 16 touchdowns and 9 interceptions. He was voted the team MVP that season and seemed to be poised to take on the starting role for the franchise moving forward.
Then Ryan Tannehill happened.
The Dolphins drafted their franchise quarterback in the first round and Matt Moore became the team’s backup and has held that role now for the past 5 seasons. The durability that Tannehill showed week in and week out led many to think we may not see Matt Moore play again for the Dolphins, but one low hit by Calais Campbell has altered that, and altered the landscape of Miami’s season.
Matt Moore takes over a team that is 8-5 and right in the thick of the playoff hunt. Although Miami is not in complete control of their destiny, they are set up nicely to earn a wild card berth due to the difficulty of Denver’s schedule. Adam Gase has shown an ability to adjust his offense based on his personnel and I believe that this situation is no exception.
Ryan Tannehill has always done a good job of protecting the football. Although he has shown growth in delivering the ball down the field this season, he has predominantly been a 15 yards and under type of quarterback. Although Gase has figured out a way to make his style work, there will have to be a change to the offense with the new starter at the helm.
“Matt Moore does not play it safe. He has a lot of ability, as far as being a down-the-field passer. I don’t think he ever gives himself credit for the fact that he sees coverage well. He can throw the ball underneath. He can throw the intermediate ball.” said Head Coach Adam Gase. “I like the fact that he’s not afraid to scramble outside the pocket and kind of play a little looser than a lot of coaches like. I like it. I like calling plays for him because you never know what you’re going to experience in that play and I kind of like that. I like that about him. He’s aggressive. It was fun when we were going through preseason to kind of see how he would develop in this offense.”
The Dolphins enter Week 15 playing for their playoff lives. The loss of Tannehill does indeed hurt, but Miami is much better off than other teams who have lost their starting quarterbacks. Expect the Dolphins to continue to rely on Jay Ajayi and the run game to alleviate pressure off the 32-year old Moore. If asked to throw though know one thing, Matt Moore will not be afraid to let it fly.
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