DAVIE — The Dolphins still have ample time to sort out their quarterback situation, but it continues to look like David Fales is the man to beat for job of being Ryan Tannehill’s backup.
Fales, who was with the team last offseason and the back half of the regular season, is getting significant snaps with the second-string offense, with Brock Osweiler and Bryce Petty behind him.
“We’re just going to keep, really, just pushing those guys and keep opening up the offense to do as many things as possible,” coach Adam Gase said this week. “They’re trying to get used to the guys that they’re practicing with. I know even for David it’s a different group than he was last year.”
Fales took third-string reps last offseason behind Tannehill and Matt Moore, but Gase said he’s spent more time second unit this year. He’s had a lot of plays with Albert Wilson and Jakeem Grant, both of whom are borderline starters.
“Those guys are really good receivers and they challenge those DBs.,” Gase said. “It’s been good for both David and Brock and Bryce to get to work with a lot of the guys they’re working with right now.”
Fales, Osweiler and Petty have not been available to the media this offseason.
Tannehill is the clear starter and takes the majority of his reps with DeVante Parker, Kenny Stills and Danny Amendola.
Gase is out to back up his claim that he has a dependable No. 2 quarterback on the roster and won’t need to call a veteran free agent if Tannehill gets hurt again. Fales and Petty have limited playing experience, and Osweiler hasn’t been viable since 2015.
The advantage for Fales and Osweiler is their experience with Gase prior to this year. That’s especially true for Fales after playing in the offense last season and impressing Gase with extended playing time in the season finale. Dating back to January, Gase has repeatedly indicated Fales is a strong candidate to be Tannehill’s backup.
“Last year we felt really good about how David was coming along,” Gase said three months ago. “Letting him move on (to another team) was not going to be an option for us.”
Gase also said at that time he would “probably” keep three quarterbacks on the active roster in 2018, compared to two each of the past two seasons, though that was factoring in the possibility that the Dolphins would draft one. It’s unclear whether he still intends to go that route, and he doesn’t have to decide until the cut from 90 to 53 players at the end of the preseason.
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