Coach Mike McDaniel had the Miami Dolphins rolling when healthy, but can they keep it up with defenses figuring out the scheme? We can draft them all on Underdog Fantasy with promo code 'UNDERBLOG' to match your first deposit up to $100. We have the biggest fantasy football tournament of all time ($15M) right now.
It was a tale of two seasons for the 2022 Dolphins. Through Week 12, Tua was 1st in EPA per play (+0.40) by a country mile. Then he missed some snaps with perceived concussions, while defenses made some key adjustments (mainly playing more press man and playing inside leverage to take away efficient middle-field throws). In four games after Week 12, Tua was 31st in both EPA per play (-0.14) and completion percentage over expected (-9%). Small sample, sure. But somewhat concerning aside from the obvious injury concern. With that said, I do trust coach Mike McDaniel to have a counter. Perhaps it's a more balanced gameplan after ranking 31st in runs per game. Perhaps it's just not ranking 28th in special teams DVOA and 28th in penalty yards. Either way, this is a very fun but volatile team. It's one of my favorite offenses to watch.
2-WR Sets (3rd in snaps, 46% of snaps)
WR: Tyreek Hill --> Cedrick Wilson
WR: Jaylen Waddle --> Chosen Anderson
SLOT TE: Eric Saubert --> Elijah Higgins (R)
INLINE TE: Durham Smythe --> Tanner Conner
3-WR Sets (29th in snaps, 45% of snaps)
WR: Jaylen Waddle --> Erik Ezukanma
WR: Cedrick Wilson --> Chosen Anderson
SLOT: Tyreek Hill --> Braxton Berrios
TE: Durham Smythe --> Eric Saubert
RB Usage (27th in expected half PPR)
GOAL LINE: Jeff Wilson --> Raheem Mostert
PASSING DOWN: Devon Achane (R) --> Jeff Wilson
Offensive Line (iffy but better than before)
LT: Terron Armstead (32yo good returning starter)
LG: Liam Eichenberg (bad returning starter)
C: Connor Williams (good returning starter)
RG: Robert Hunt (average returning starter)
RT: Austin Jackson (mid player coming off injury)
It was a roller coaster ride but Tua Tagovailoa finished as the QB7 and the 77th overall player using Underdog Fantasy scoring. He played the best ball of his career through 12 weeks, often spamming middle throws to Tyreek Hill versus off coverage. They were 2nd in average depth of target and were 2nd in deep ball catch rate. Pretty good. Also unsustainable. Tua's yards per attempt jumped for 6.6 to 8.9 (NFL leader) and his TD rate jumped from 4.0% to 6.3% (tied for the NFL lead). With defenses chipping away at this new offensive scheme late in the year, Tua's fantasy football stock has probably maxed out already, especially with the defense and run game looking better. He only had two games above 25 fantasy points last year because he has a career 8.5 rushing yards per game average and needs to protect himself in short-yardage situations.
Tyreek Hill ate without Patrick Mahomes, ranking as the WR4 and 8th overall player in fantasy points over expected per game. The 29-year-old was PFF's top-graded receiver, on an absurd 3.0 yards per route run. The only on-field issues with his Round 1 status is the fragility of Tua's health and the potential of losing valuable RPO targets (+10.1 yards per target) after defenses started taking them away late last year. Tyreek's off-field issue was another run in with the police. There's enough risk for me to take Cooper Kupp ahead of him every single time. ... Even certified ballers are bound to regress. That's Jaylen Waddle, after going from 7.3 to 11.3 yards per target last year. The Dolphins will likely not hit on the cylinders they were hitting on in 2022, which easily could slide Waddle's TDs closer to his 4.4 expected scores. His +3.6 TDs over expectation were the 5th-highest at the position. He was the WR11 per game on WR27 in expected fantasy points. ... It's dry behind them. Cedrick Wilson ($8M cap hit) is making more than slot-only Braxton Berrios ($3.5M) and 30-year-old Chosen Anderson ($1M). This is a two-receiver show.
The Dolphins were 29th in TE fantasy usage last year, even with receiving-threat Mike Gesicki. 28-year-old career backup Durham Smythe essentially re-signed a two-year, $8.5M to be the starter. His 0.8 yards per route run are well below the standard fantasy contributor. Gesicki was the TE22 per game under McDaniel last season.
I'd put the Dolphins near the very top for Dalvin Cook's services, which makes this blurb impossible to write. But here we go. Jeff Wilson (1-year, $3M) and Raheem Mostert (1-year, $3M) are attempting to hold off 3rd-round rookie Devon Achane. This is simultaneously the fastest, yet smallest RB rooms in the NFL. On brand for Miami. Coach McDaniels regretted not running the ball more late in the year once defenses adapted, so I'm expecting slightly more RB fantasy usage here after a lowly 27th-ranked finish in the metric last year, but I don't see a bellcow profile in this offense, so a relatively even split is probable. Here's how touches per game were divvied up from Week 9 on, with Wilson (RB33) slightly leading Mostert (RB35) in fantasy points over replacement per game:
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WR3 Tyreek Hill (3.9 overall) --> Soft fading
WR11 Jaylen Waddle (16.0) --> Soft fading
QB10 Tua Tagovailoa (96.8) --> Only in stacks
RB39 Devon Acahne (118.4) --> Fading
RB51 Raheem Mostert (166.6) --> Fading
RB57 Jeff Wilson (185.2) --> Fading