I didn't know whether to laugh or cry when I read, "Just as spring inevitably turns to summer, the buzz out of Miami is once again of rainbows and the no-huddle. DeVante Parker is also finally eating his Wheaties, per reports". It's been our story every year.
Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me five times….
We’ve heard no-huddle talk since Joe Philbin was eating vanilla ice cream while running “tone-setting” fast-paced practices six years ago. Then Bill Lazor was supposed to juice their pace. He didn’t. The last couple of seasons, Adam Gase again proved words are wind when it comes to Dolphins tempo.
Just as spring inevitably turns to summer, the buzz out of Miami is once again of rainbows and the no-huddle. DeVante Parker is also finally eating his Wheaties, per reports.
Last season, with a calcifying Jay Cutler behind center, the Dolphins were a middling 15th in no-huddle rate, 22nd in plays per game, and 29th in seconds-per-snap pace during neutral game situations. We can give them a pass because of Cutler, and their plodding offensive pace did help in allowing opponents the seventh-fewest snaps.
The Dolphins were probably scarred by 2016, when they allowed the second-most plays per game and scrapped the no-huddle after three weeks because the offense couldn’t possess the ball long enough. Miami averaged a pathetic 57 plays per game that year (league-worst), while operating at the NFL’s second slowest situation-neutral pace.
They were a “three yards and a cloud of dust” offense, centered on Jay Ajayi, and snuck into the playoffs. While their top pass-catcher averaged more than three yards, Jarvis Landry’s receptions were glorified, clock-killing handoffs.
Landry is gone now. So are Ajayi and Cutler, and even offensive coordinator Clyde Christensen. Ryan Tannehill is back healthy, and Dowell Loggains – who coordinated last season’s slowest-paced, run-heaviest offense in Chicago – is replacing Christensen. What this means for Miami’s pace is anyone’s guess, but despite the depressing picture painted above, it’s worth paying close attention.
The Dolphins have an absolute truckload of unclaimed carries (184) and targets (276) from last season – when they didn’t run very many plays. Parker, Kenyan Drake, Kenny Stills, and several others are not only sitting on a mountain of vacated opportunity, if Miami finally makes good on their pace proclamations, it may be a surprising volcano of volume.