Miami Dolphins head coach Joe Philbin has made it a habit over the two plus seasons he has been in Miami to never actually talk about a player, whether it be an injury, missed practice time, or what the player may be doing in an upcoming game. This week, that habit led to answers like Monday's "We are going to get our 46 best players to the game and we are going to utilize them the best way possible," when asked if he would consider benching starting quarterback Ryan Tannehill.
Tuesday, the same theme continued when asked if he has decided on a starting quarterback yet. Philbin replied, We're going to practice. We just started our preparation today, we did first and second down. We're putting our game plan together. We're going to practice throughout the week. At the end of the week, we're going to pick the 46 guys that give us the best chance to win a game in London."
Away from the media, however, it appears to be a different story. NFL Network's Jeff Darlington reported Tuesday that multiple players from the Dolphins told him they have been told that Tannehill will be the starter this week. Tannehill has been working as the starting quarterback all week, with no apparent change to reflect a perceived challenge from backup Matt Moore.
Tannehill has been far from perfect this year, and he definitely has doubts surrounding his play right now, but Moore is not the future of the Dolphins franchise. If the team is going to know that Tannehill is not the future either, benching him after three games is not the right answer. There are enough questions for the Dolphins - including a shaky offensive line, a completely demolished linebacker corps, and wide receivers who seem to be dropping the ball as often as they can - to continue to give the ball to Tannehill.
The favorite player on every team is the backup quarterback. That does not always mean he is the answer. The quarterback controversy in Miami seems to have never actually be a controversy for the team - just the fans and the media. Will it eventually become an issue for the team?