The Miami Dolphins agreed to terms with former Carolina Panthers quarterback Matt Moore today, ending speculation of who the "veteran to challenge Chad Henne" would be. But, this set off a huge reaction among Dolphins fans, both on this site and elsewhere.
The signing of Moore seemed to remove the possibility of the much speculated trade with the Denver Broncos for Kyle Orton. That trade, thought to be held up over both contract demands of Orton and the disagreement over draft pick compensation between the two franchises, had been described as nearly complete on Tuesday, and as of now had all but fallen apart.
But, does the signing of Matt Moore really signal the end of the Dolphins 2011 season? Are the Dolphins really in the "Andrew Luck race" just because they signed a quarterback, who in all reality will probably be the team's second string QB for the year? Was Kyle Orton going to be the savior to Miami that suddenly everyone seems to think he would have been?
Matt Moore has played in 20 games as a professional, starting 11 of them. He has a 57.6% completion rate, with 15 touchdowns and 14 interceptions and 2,433 yards. Overall, he has a QB rating of 76.7.
Kyle Orton, meanwhile, has played in 62 games, starting 61 of them. He has a 71-48 TD to INT ratio, and has thrown for 12,774 yards. He has a QB rating of 79.6.
Finally, Chad Henne, Miami's starting quarterback, has played in 32 games, starting 27 of them. He has a 61.1% completion rate, with 27 touchdowns and 33 interceptions, for 6,246 yards. Overall, he has a QB rating of 75.3.
When you really look at all three QBs, none of them jump out as a huge improvement over the other. They all have similar stats. They are all young, with Orton's six years being the most out of any of them. All three of them can still develop, and probably will, into something better than what they are now. Are any of them "franchise" quarterbacks? That remains to be seen.
And, just because the Dolphins have signed Moore, no one is saying they are out of the Orton talks. Look for them to continue, although Denver paying the $1.5 million roster bonus for Orton being on their roster after 4pm EDT today will make things a little more difficult.
No matter what happens, Miami's success or demise this season will not be based on whether or not Kyle Orton is in aqua. It will be because whomever is behind center understands the new offense being installed, has the support of his teammates, and demonstrates the leadership this offense needs.