As the Dolphins entered camp earlier today, there was one glaring absence, first round draft pick Ryan Tannehill was not with his team.
Tannehill, the Dolphins’ quarterback of the future, remains unsigned by the Dolphins. The delay is frustrating for an organization trying to move on after yet another disappointing season in 2011. General Manager Jeff Ireland expressed as much to James Walker of ESPN,
“He’s obviously not here, so we’re obviously not done yet. I think progress is being made. It’s progressing, communication is ongoing on both sides. . . . We will not discuss the details of the negotiations in public.”
The feeling around the league is that Tannehill is too far behind quarterbacks David Garrard and Matt Moore to claim the starting job for the Dolphins by the beginning of the regular season. There’s little doubt that the team will eventually be Tannehill’s.
The immediate impact of Tannehill’s absence is that he’s loosing out on valuable coaching as training camp progresses without him. The hope is that his holdout will be short lived. By getting into camp sooner rather than later, Tannehill will be able to get more playing time in the Dolphins’ preseason games as well as irreplaceable game time experience.
Considering the perception that the Dolphins have been happy with Garrard’s performance with the team, Tannehill probably won’t be rising to the starting position for the Dolphins unless he makes unbelievable progress throughout training camp. The first step to making that progress, of course, has to be getting him into camp.