David Fales

AFC East Notes: Dolphins, Cannon, Coleman

The Dolphins currently have three quarterbacks on the roster, and it looks like it will stay that way. Per Adam Beasley of the Miami Herald, Dolphins head coach Adam Gase said he anticipates keeping three signal-callers all year, although he would not say whether David Fales or Brock Osweiler would serve as Ryan Tannehill‘s primary backup. Beasley suggests the No. 2 QB could change depending on the week (Twitter links).

Now for more from the AFC East:

  • The Dolphins cut former third-round pick Leonte Carroo yesterday, but Beasley tweets that Carroo could find himself on the team’s practice squad if he clears waivers. Although Carroo has disappointed in the pros thus far, other teams with a need at wide receiver may be willing to give him a shot.
  • Patriots right tackle Marcus Cannon, who missed the entire preseason with a leg injury, is expected to be cleared to play in Week 1, as Jeff Howe of The Athletic tweets. As Howe details, Cannon’s availability could have an impact on other members of the team’s roster (Twitter link).
  • The Bills cut Corey Coleman yesterday, less than one month after trading a non-conditional draft pick for him and assuming his guaranteed base salaries in each of the next years. Mary Kay Cabot of Cleveland.com writes that Buffalo did not like Coleman’s attitude from the time he arrived, and the former first-rounder is also still dealing with tightness in his hamstrings. It is telling that the Bills would let Coleman go despite the team’s obvious need for receiving talent.
  • The Jets made a strong offer for Khalil Mack, but that offer did not include two first-round picks, which helped convince the Raiders to ship Mack to Chicago.

AFC Notes: Broncos, Bridgewater, Patriots, Dolphins

Here are some assorted notes from around the AFC as we wrap up the weekend…

  • The Broncos will have two major roster questions to answer prior to Saturday’s roster cut-down deadline, opines Ryan O’Halloran of the Denver Post. First, the team has to figure out what to do with injured safety Su’a Cravens. The defensive back hasn’t practice since early August due to knee soreness, and he hasn’t appeared in an NFL game since late 2016. O’Halloran wonders if the team will have the roster space or patience to stash Cravens again. Meanwhile, the team will also have to decide on quarterback Paxton Lynch, who was recently demoted for Chad Kelly. The writer wonders whether the Broncos would rather keep the former first-rounder, replace him with a veteran backup, or roll with two quarterbacks for the start of the season.
  • Unless they receive an offer they can’t refuse, ESPN’s Rich Cimini believes the Jets should hold on to quarterback Teddy Bridgewater. The team should be focused on maintaining their depth, and the writer believes the signal-caller has more value to the team as a backup than a trade chip. If the Jets accept an offer that doesn’t include a third-rounder or better, Cimini believes it’d be a mistake. The writer also looks at several former Jets draft picks who are on the roster bubble, including linebacker Lorenzo Mauldin, wide receivers Charone Peake and Chad Hansen, and cornerback Juston Burris.
  • ESPN’s Mike Reiss can’t envision the Patriots adding wideout Dez Bryant. While the team could certainly use some reinforcement at the position (especially following Eric Decker‘s decision to retire), the writer question whether Bryant would be able to fit into the culture or system. If the team did want to add another wideout to their roster, Reiss believes that free agent (and former Patriot) Brandon LaFell would be a more logical target. Even in that case, the writer can’t see the team making a move unless there’s an injury at the position.
  • While the pairing of David Fales and Brock Osweiler may be relatively underwhelming, Dolphins coach Adam Gase isn’t expecting to add another backup quarterback behind Ryan Tannehill. While the coach would like to see some improvement from his co-second-stringers, he’s not concerned about their lackluster preseasons. “I think there’s room for improvement for sure,” Gase said (via Mike Florio of ProFootballTalk.com), “but it’s hard to put it all on them when you get the ball and you’re not expecting it or we’re not blocking the guys. That’s why it’s hard to evaluate quarterbacks sometimes in preseason games and you have to use all your practice time and what you know about guys’ history, and that’s what makes it tough to evaluate them sometimes.”

Dolphins Rumors: Fales, Osweiler, DBs, LBs

David Fales completed just 1 of 6 passes in the Dolphins’ second preseason game, and although Brock Osweiler is the bigger name, the team’s internal preference is believed to be for the incumbent to back up Ryan Tannehill, Barry Jackson of the Miami Herald notes. As for Bryce Petty, he’s still behind both aforementioned backups, Jackson adds. Osweiler signed for the league minimum, making the Dolphins’ 2018 quarterback depth chart much cheaper than last year’s setup of Tannehill, Jay Cutler and Matt Moore — which represented more than $30MM against the 2017 team’s cap. A former sixth-round Bears pick in 2014, Fales has 48 career pass attempts — 43 of those coming last season with Miami.

Here’s the latest out of south Florida.

  • Minkah Fitzpatrick is primarily working as a slot defender for the Dolphins, Roy Cummings of FloridaFootballInsiders.com passes along. The first-round pick out of Alabama was billed as a versatile performer entering the draft, with safety or cornerback potential. It looks like, for now, the Dolphins are taking advantage of that. Previous slot bastion Bobby McCain has moved to the outside, and that looks to have been done to give Fitzpatrick a role. Prior to the move, the Dolphins didn’t have a place for Fitzpatrick, Adam Beasley of the Miami Herald writes. Fitzpatrick, though, also played sparingly as a pure safety in Miami’s initial two preseason games.
  • Mike Hull may begin the season on IR, Jackson notes. The Dolphins would carry their fourth-year veteran linebacker onto the 53-man roster before placing him on IR, which would allow him to return during the season once he recovers from the sprained MCL he sustained earlier this month. Hull started three games last season. Raekwon McMillan is Miami’s middle linebacker starter.
  • Second-year UDFA Chase Allen looks to have a job as a Dolphins backup linebacker, but former Saints first-round pick Stephone Anthony may not. Jackson writes the 2015 first-rounder’s put together a poor preseason that has him on the bubble. Anthony played in eight Dolphins games upon being traded to Miami last year. He played 130 defensive snaps but did not stand out. However, with Hull out, the Dolphins need bodies to fill out their linebacking corps. UFA addition Terence Garvin isn’t a lock to survive cutdown weekend, either, Jackson adds.

Latest On Dolphins’ QB Situation

After plenty of offseason speculation as to whether the Dolphins would at least begin preparing to move on from Ryan Tannehill, it is clear that Tannehill will be the team’s starting quarterback in 2018. Who his backup will be, however, is more uncertain.

Over the past several months, Miami re-signed David Fales, signed Brock Osweiler, and claimed Bryce Petty off waivers, and per Barry Jackson of the Miami Herald, Fales has performed much better than his competitors in spring practices. Fales served as the team’s No. 3 signal-caller for much of last season and played most of the meaningless season finale, which easily represented his most significant NFL experience (before that, he had attempted a grand total of five passes since being drafted by the Bears in the sixth round of the 2014 draft).

Despite his lack of seasoning, Fales does have a history with head coach Adam Gase — who was Chicago’s offensive coordinator in 2015 — and the Dolphins liked how he performed in the 2017 finale, when he completed 29 of 43 passes for 265 yards and a touchdown, with his one interception created by a receiver’s mistake. Indeed, Jackson says that when Gase perused the free agent crop of QBs this offseason, he did not see one that he considered better than Fales.

Fales has justified his coach’s faith in him this spring, as he has looked decisive and accurate when making all types of throws. Osweiler, meanwhile, has struggled, and Petty has been inconsistent at best.

However, Gase is not yet willing to name Fales the No. 2 QB just yet. He said, “Right now, I don’t want to go into that because I don’t have a great answer. I want to see guys playing in preseason games, how training camp goes.” Certainly, training camp and the preseason will serve as a much better indicator than OTAs and minicamp, but right now, the Dolphins’ backup QB job looks like it’s Fales’ to lose.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Dolphins Re-Sign QB David Fales

The Dolphins have re-signed quarterback David Fales to a one-year contract, according to Adam Schefter of ESPN.com (Twitter link).

Miami opted not to tender Fales as a restricted free agent before the 2018 league year began on Wednesday. Instead, they’ll bring him back on a one-year deal that will presumably be worth less than than original round tender of $1.907MM. That tender would have been fully non-guaranteed, while Fales’ new pact could conceivably contain some guaranteed money.

It’s unclear if the Dolphins trust Fales to be their No. 2 quarterback behind current starter Ryan Tannehill, but Brandon Doughty is the only other signal-caller on the roster at the moment. Fales, 27, has a history with Miami head coach Adam Gase, but had only attempted six career passes before getting a game’s worth of work in the 2017 season finale.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Dolphins Release CB Byron Maxwell

The Dolphins have released cornerback Byron Maxwell, as Adam Schefter of ESPN.com tweets. To take his place, the team has signed quarterback David FalesByron Maxwell (vertical)

Maxwell has been demoted from the roster at various points this season. It appears that the cornerback is in decline, but coaches say that he is also refusing to play the defenses called from the sidelines. In cases where the Dolphins have called for press-man coverage, Maxwell has gone rogue and played far off of receivers. Although coaches were direct with Maxwell about the reasons behind his benching, he did not take accountability for it when talking to the media.

“ …In no way, shape, did I think my play [warranted] that,” Maxwell said earlier this month. “It’s a coach’s decision. Sometimes you have to deal with it. I’m a team player. Suck it up. Obviously, you think you’re the best man to do the job. You can’t control it. Everyone is trying to support your family trying to do the job.”

By releasing him now, the Fins are still on the hook for a significant portion of his $8.5MM cap number in 2017. However, they have freed themselves of his contract well before his $10MM cap number would have hit in 2018. They’ve also taken a potentially toxic player out of the locker room.

The Dolphins acquired Maxwell from the Eagles in the summer of 2016, just two days after they cut Brent Grimes. They were hoping that the cornerback could bounce back from a down year in 2015, but he was never able to get things going in Miami. On the plus side, linebacker Kiko Alonso remains a fixture on defense, so the Dolphins didn’t totally lose out when they moved down from the No. 8 pick to No. 13 that year.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Latest On Jay Cutler, Dolphins’ QB Situation

Confirming reports from Sunday night, Dolphins quarterback Jay Cutler did indeed suffer cracked ribs in Miami’s Week 7 win over the Jets, tweets Ian Rapoport of NFL.com. Cutler is initially expected to miss two-to-three weeks while recovering from the injury.jay Cutler (Vertical)

With Cutler sidelined, Miami is meeting with free agent quarterback David Fales, per Rapoport (Twitter link). Fales spent the summer with the Dolphins, and also worked under Miami head coach Adam Gase when the pair was in Chicago. Given that history, Fales should have enough familiarity with Gase’s offense in order to serve as Matt Moore‘s backup on Thursday night. If signed, Fales will have been chosen over Dolphins practice squad quarterback Brandon Doughty.

Despite Cutler’s struggles to begin the 2017 season, he’s expected to remain Miami’s starter under center when he returns from injury, according to Armando Salguero of the Miami Herald. Moore could certainly change that with excellent play over the next several weeks, but the Dolphins plan to re-insert Cutler when he’s available. Cutler, who un-retired to join Miami, hasn’t performed well this year, as he ranks 28th in quarterback rating and 29th in adjusted net yards per attempt.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Patriots Audition QB Matt Barkley

The Patriots worked out quarterbacks Matt Barkley, Matt McGloin, and David Fales on Friday, a source tells Field Yates of ESPN.com (Twitter link).Matt Barkley (Vertical)

New England only has two quarterbacks on its roster after trading third-stringer Jacoby Brissett for wide receiver Phillip Dorsett last week, so the club is likely searching for depth. Of course, the Patriots’ top two signal-callers are Tom Brady and Jimmy Garoppolo, so while they don’t need an immediate arm, the team is simply keeping its options open.

All three of Barkley (49ers), McGloin (Eagles), and Fales (Dolphins) were released by their respective clubs during final cutdowns. Barkley and McGloin are far more experienced than Fales, as both have started at least six career games and attempted at least 250 passes. Fales, on the other hand, has tossed only five passes in his career, all of which came in 2016 with the Bears.

Quarterback wasn’t the only position New England addressed in today’s workouts — the Patriots also took a look at former Browns receiver Jordan Payton, per Ian Rapoport of NFL.com (Twitter link). However, Mike Reiss of ESPN.com doesn’t expect the club to add an outside pass-catcher, even given the injuries to Julian Edelman, Malcolm Mitchell, and Danny Amendola.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Dolphins Reach 53-Man Max

The Dolphins reached the 53-man roster maximum. Here’s how:

Waived:

Waived/injured:

Released:

Placed on IR:

PUP List:

Williams played in ten games between the Chiefs and Dolphins last season, finishing with eight tackles. He restructured his deal in March, but it wasn’t enough to keep his spot in Miami.

Young was slated to make $1.2MM in 2017 per the terms of the extension he signed in the winter.

Dolphins Sign QB David Fales

The Dolphins have agreed to terms with quarterback David Fales, as James Walker of ESPN.com tweets. Fales was a former draft pick of the Bears and spent the 2015 season with Miami head coach Adam GaseDavid Fales (vertical)

Fales now becomes the third quarterback on the Dolphins’ depth chart, behind starter Ryan Tannehill and backup Matt Moore. T.J. Yates is a free agent and today’s signing is probably an indication that he’ll be headed elsewhere in 2017.

In other Dolphins news, they’re reportedly taking a hard look at front seven prospects in this year’s draft and recently lined up a visit with Michigan defensive end Taco Charlton.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.