Dolphins should consider Paxton Lynch

Dec 30, 2015; Birmingham, AL, USA; Memphis Tigers quarterback Paxton Lynch (12) drops back to pass against Auburn Tigers in the 2015 Birmingham Bowl at Legion Field. Mandatory Credit: Marvin Gentry-USA TODAY Sports
Dec 30, 2015; Birmingham, AL, USA; Memphis Tigers quarterback Paxton Lynch (12) drops back to pass against Auburn Tigers in the 2015 Birmingham Bowl at Legion Field. Mandatory Credit: Marvin Gentry-USA TODAY Sports /

If available at the 13th spot, the Dolphins should consider drafting Paxton Lynch to provide much-needed competition to the Quarterback position.

Since his rookie season four years ago, Ryan Tannehill has been the subject of scrutiny from football analysts. Now, an experienced veteran with four years under his belt, Tannehill has been thoroughly analyzed—and his skeptics have amassed some compelling evidence.

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In the NFL, a quarterback is judged on how well he performs on the field. However, what defines a QB isn’t necessarily his play; it’s his winning percentage.

Like it or not, that’s how it is. And for the most part, the doubters of Ryan Tannehill have a case. As a starting QB, Tannehill has a career record of 29-35. Of course, not all wins and losses should fall on the QB’s shoulders. However, Tannehill continues to hinder his chances at winning by struggling when it matters most—on third down, in the red zone, and in the fourth quarter.

And, of course, you have the Tannehill-believers, as well. You can’t forget about these guys—the excuse-makers, as I call them. We’ve heard it every year. Every excuse in the book has been made as to why Tannehill hasn’t matured into the top-tier QB that we all so desperately want him to be. Whether it be coaching, receiving, or his offensive line play, we’ve heard it all. But enough is enough.

In the NFL, in order to be a consistently successful team destined to make a long playoff-run each year, you must have one position cemented in stone: quarterback. Currently, the Miami Dolphins don’t have that. And because they don’t have the right material, they haven’t even purchased the cement or mixer yet.

Whichever way you happen to lean in the Ryan Tannehill argument is your prerogative. Still, in this upcoming NFL draft, the Miami Dolphins might have the chance to grab a top-rated quarterback.

When’s the last time that has happened?

More than likely, QB Paxton Lynch will be available when the Dolphins are on the clock with the 13th pick. The Dolphins should draft him, but they won’t. Instead, the Dolphins have put most of their time and resources evaluating other positions of need such as cornerback, linebacker, guard, and defensive end.

Without question, the Dolphins need help at cornerback, linebacker, guard, and defensive end. But a team is only as good as their quarterback. And if Adam Gase doesn’t find what makes Ryan Tannehill tick, these offseason moves are merely a consolation prize at best.

In many ways—aside from the obvious—drafting Paxton Lynch helps the Miami Dolphins. Many things can happen: Tannehill can use this as motivation to secure his spot and can alleviate the pain and stress he’s put on many fans and become a top-tier quarterback, resulting in the Dolphins using Lynch as attractive trade-bait to wanted suitors. Or, vice-versa, Lynch can turn out to be a stud and provide good, consistent play at the QB position for the first time since Dan Marino.

Of course, the Dolphins may run into the chance that neither QB pans out. But in such a case, they’re back at square one—where they are now.

As of right now, Lynch is the third ranked QB behind California’s Jeff Goff and North Dakota State’s Carson Wentz. Lynch has everything you want in a quarterback—a big frame, strong, accurate arm, good feet, and the ability to extend the play.

Despite his huge frame (6-7 245), Lynch is extremely mobile, being sacked only 15 times in 477 drop-backs. He’s got good pocket awareness and, with his height, can scan over the field with ease. Being able to do it with both his arm and legs, Lynch is the prototypical dual-threat quarterback.

Lynch may be a little raw for some people’s taste. He still has a lot to learn. Lynch is only two years removed from a poor freshman year at Memphis where he threw 10 interceptions to his only nine touchdowns. But the Florida-native vastly improved his sophomore (22 tds/nine ints) and junior (28 tds/four ints) seasons for the Tigers.

Even though Lynch possesses a strong arm, he still needs to get better at throwing on the run; in fact, he still has a lot to learn.

Paxton Lynch is a kid adjusting into his enormous physique. But he has tremendous upside. With this, Lynch has the power to give GM’s around the league heart palpitations. Many teams around the NFL understand the risk and reward factor involved with drafting such a player, especially at the most important position.

In reality, teams are taking a huge risk in selecting any player in the NFL draft. But if I were risking so much for the unknown, I would want the chance to have a lot in return. And in sports, what’s more important than wins?

Sure, a cornerback who’s a ball-hawk, a linebacker who’s a tackling machine, or a defensive end who is a pass-rush specialist would be nice for the Miami Dolphins. But they won’t produce wins.

A quarterback, however, can.