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Sunday Dolphins Mailbag: Biggest Weakness, Tua 'Redemption Plan,' RB projection, and More

Tackling various issues on the minds of Miami Dolphins fans, including experience on the coaching staff and where Jaylen Waddle and Tyreek Hill might rank in terms of fastest wide receiver tandems in NFL history

Third and final part of this week's SI Fan Nation All Dolphins mailbag:

From JaSoN (@JWhat13):

With the rumor that Flores had all young coaches on the team and no veteran coach to lean on, who would you say in McDaniel's current staff would be his go-to guy for that veteran coaching advice/experience?

Hey Jason, well, first off, Chan Gailey was the offensive coordinator in 2020 and he certainly would qualify as a “veteran coach.” To answer your question, there’s not really a “veteran coach” on the staff in the sense most people apply, but most of the coaches have been around for a while.

From Brice (@BricefromLA):

What do you think will be the biggest weakness on the team in 2022?

Hey Brice, good question, and I’m thinking off the top of my head the run defense is the area where I might have the most concern. I think we’d also have to look at the offensive line because even though I expect it to be much better, that still has to materialize on the field.

From Ouch (@whyPhinswhywhy):

Seeing as you were the very first local reporter out on Tua, what’s your plan of redemption when Tua proves to be a player worth investing in? Can we set up a dunk tank or something ?

Hey Ouch (points on originality here), let’s start by defining “out on Tua.” Unless I’m forgetting something I said or wrote, I have NEVER once used that term, nor said definitively that he’s a bust or anything to that effect. What I have said is that I wasn’t a huge fan when he was coming out of college (physical shortcomings masked by an all-star supporting cast) and have seen nothing in the past two years to make me change my mind, so until proven otherwise, I’m going to have doubts as to whether he can become an elite quarterback. Second, plan of redemption? That’s funny. Part of my job is to provide analysis, and I don’t need redemption if I happen to be wrong on a player projection because — and I know this will come as a shock — that happens from time to time. Lastly, “dunk tank,” sure, sounds fun, but we’ll have to charge money for the opportunity and we can donate the money to charity. And since I think that kind of thing would generate little to no interest, you’d have to settle for something like me writing, “Well, turns out that Tua has become a better NFL quarterback than I had anticipated.”

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From Ken R (@krixter):

Which 2nd year player will make the biggest impact? Who will slump?

Hey Ken, I think I might keep an eye on Liam Eichenberg as a second-year player ready to make a big jump in 2022. As for who will slump, man, that’s a downer of a question. The best way to answer this is to start with the players who had great success as rookies in 2021, and that would be Jaylen Waddle, Jaelan Phillips and Jevon Holland. Now, instead of predicting who will “slump,” let me address this by instead telling you who I think will have the most difficult time repeating what he did last season and I think that distinction might go to Waddle if for no other reason than there are more options on offense this season, so his number of targets therefore likely will decrease.

From Jamie Bazdaric (@BazdaricJamie):

0-4 is too soon, 2-12 is too late…How many losses would you predict we are at before we hear STRONG Teddy requests? I am still scarred from the 1-7 start last year and am also assuming no injuries.

Hey Jamie, here’s another question that’s going to go over real well with a lot of Dolphins fans. Understand first that any change of this kind wouldn’t be strictly the result of wins and losses, understanding that quarterback play obviously plays a part in that. So, to answer question, I’m not sure I can give you a definitive answer other than I certainly would think it would be closer to 0-4 than 2-12 that the Dolphins would make a change, but it's going to be very early if the team is losing and Tua is putting up good numbers.

From Chip Turner (@ChipTurnerPA):

Of Gaskin, Ahmed, Mostert, Michel, Edmonds, Doaks and White, which RB do you believe make the team, and how many will they carry on the 53?

Hey Chip, let’s start with how many they’ll carry and my best guess at this point would be four, plus fullback Alec Ingold. Then I’d say that Gaskin, Michel and Edmonds are pretty safe bets to be on the 53-man roster. The wild card here will be Mostert because he’s coming back from a major knee injury that required surgery. If he’s good to go for the start of the regular season, that would be the fourth.

From Jake McVay (@JakeMc945):

There can't be a faster wide receiver duo ever in league history than Waddle & Hill, right, Alain? Why am I so damn excited? Maybe 30 years of disappointment? Yeah, no need to answer the last question.

Hey Jake, not sure I can answer that definitively, but the possibility certainly does exist it’s the fastest wide receiver tandem ever because those two have some kind of speed. And go ahead, be excited. The possibilities are exciting indeed.