Josh Rosen is a forgotten man on the Miami Dolphins roster but he could be the most important.
When it comes to the quarterbacks on the Miami Dolphins roster, it starts with Ryan Fitzpatrick and ends with Tua Tagovailoa, but there is Josh Rosen.
Josh Rosen isn’t waiting for his shot to win the starting job. He isn’t wishing ill on rookie Tua Tagovailoa and he isn’t going to unseat Ryan Fitzpatrick to start the season. This is a two-man race to finish the year when the reigns of the franchise are turned over to Tua.
Naturally, everyone wants to know where Rosen is going to end up. Will he be traded this year or released next year? Will he sign an extension for a lower minimum? Josh Rosen needs to be Josh Rosen and while he is embracing what is coming this year, he can be the most valuable quarterback on the Dolphins roster. That is what he needs to learn.
Behind every one of the Miami Dolphins’ best quarterbacks, there has been a great back-up. Earl Morral backed up Bob Griese and eventually, Don Strock took over that role. Strock was the primary back-up through Griese’s later seasons, backed up David Woodley, and when it appeared he might get the nod to take over the team, Miami drafted Dan Marino.
Strock spent the rest of his Dolphins career backing up Marino before the job was handed off to someone else. The problem? Miami didn’t do much with those traveling back-up QB’s. The Scott Mitchell’s and Scott Secules’ of the league. The Dolphins didn’t return to the Super Bowl and Dan Marino, while prolific, lacked that voice behind him that he could rely on.
After Marino retired, the Dolphins struggled to find a suitable starter, let alone a suitable and reliable back-up. You could argue that Jay Fiedler was basically a back-up QB. We can’t tick off the QB’s that Miami ran through both as number one’s and number two’s on two hands and two feet.
The closest Miami has come was Matt Moore. Moore could have been that great back-up. He embraced that role and was there when he was needed, but Moore backed-up QB’s that were either marginally better than he was, or about the same.
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Now, we have Josh Rosen. It’s not ideal. A 10th overall draft pick relegated to the back-up role after being traded by the team that drafted a year later. Replaced for the future by another rookie a year after that. But, Rosen should know this, Tua Tagovailoa is going to need help and he has an injury history. There will be opportunities for Rosen to play, even if it is for a series or two.
Rosen needs to take that role and run with it. He needs to be the Don Strock and Earl Morral for Tagovailoa. A guy who can stand on the sidelines and see what the defense is doing that maybe Tua can’t. A support that can go over the field view images and the game film and help break it all down alongside him. Give him advice and keep him checked.
There is a place on this roster for Rosen because, after this season, Ryan Fitzpatrick is almost 100% moving on. It would become Rosen’s team too. He may not be a starter but honestly, is there any team out there that is going to hand their franchise to him right now? No. He needs to build up his resume more, he needs to adjust, he needs to fight, and if he can become that mentor by learning from Fitzpatrick this year, he could be the most important QB for this team as they develop Tua Tagovailao.