Is Super Bowl a worthy goal in the Miami Dolphins offseason?
By: Jeremy Trottier
The Miami Dolphins made a surprise turn for the best last season, finishing 10-6 and just barely missing the playoffs. This was the first time in five seasons that the Dolphins finished with a winning record, never mind one that was four games above .500. With that said, the Dolphins could be primed to finally make a playoff push this season in 2021-2022, with offseason additions to improve the squad at multiple spots. In this article, I will be going over whether or not I believe the Miami Dolphins are Super Bowl contenders this season, or if they have another offseason or two to go.
The Dolphins made some major improvements at various positions this offseason, primarily in the draft. Starting with the draft, their first four picks are almost guaranteed starters in Jaylen Waddle, Jaelan Phillips, Jevon Holland, and Liam Eichenberg. Offensive line and Edge were the Dolphins two biggest needs entering draft night, and they filled both of which during the draft alone.
Waddle will be a huge addition to the offense and has chemistry already with their starting QB Tua Tagovailoa from their time at Alabama. Jevon Holland will be a phenomenal addition to an already strong secondary, strengthening up the deep pass defense with very good ball hawking skills. Hunter Long is also a player to keep an eye on, as the Dolphins could run a 12-man rotation and switch Mike Gesicki on and off the field to get Hunter some playing time, or even running two TE sets.
Division Strength & Strength of Schedule
One of the biggest factors for the Dolphins this upcoming season will be their strength of schedule no doubt. They currently are tied for the 5th easiest strength of schedule in the league at .471-win rate of opponents last season. This should give them a really good chance to win games no doubt and gives them a much clearer path to the playoffs than last season.
In terms of division strength, the Buffalo Bills are still contenders to win the AFC as they brought in some good pieces this offseason and retained most of their roster. The New England Patriots had a huge offseason, signing what seemed like half the free agent class, and brought in their potential new QB in Mac Jones if Cam Newton does not hold up to the starting spot. Finally the New York Jets, who are still in a somewhat rebuilding state but did improve through the draft, bringing in potential franchise QB Zach Wilson and WR Elijah Moore to start things off. Overall their division has definitely improved, however the rest of their schedule is relatively easy to work through.
As of right now, it is hard to predict whether or not the Dolphins will be able to stand up against the rest of the AFC teams and make it through the playoffs. My prediction right now is they will make the playoffs no doubt, however likely will only make it to the divisional round, if they are really performing well as a unit and Tua takes off then maybe conference championship game.
Odds are if they continue to build how they have been recently next offseason, and Tua does take that next step with Waddle in Miami now, then they could be looking at a Super Bowl push in the 2022-2023 season. Right now they should focus on making the playoffs, and developing their young stars for an all-in rush next year.