The Miami Dolphins drafted quarterback Ryan Tannehill to be the future of their franchise, but it is unlikely that he starts in 2012, unless the season is completely lost.
Instead, a retread passer appears to be first in line to get the starting nod. David Garrard has worked heavily with the first-team offense and looks like he has a legitimate shot of holding off Matt Moore.
Say what you will about Garrard, but he has a chip on his shoulder. He has overcome a lot just to be an NFL quarterback, so why start counting him out now? He isn't special, and the veteran does not do anything particularly well. What he does effectively, though, is manage an offense and get the ball out of his hand quickly.
Incorporate a few underrated pieces in the offense, and the Miami passing game could be better than expected. I have already professed my desire to give Chad Ochocinco a chance in fantasy football this year, so why not consider Garrard if you're desperate? Anthony Fasano, Brian Hartline, Davone Bess, Legedu Naanee, Clyde Gates ... someone has to emerge from this group to be a viable target.
He last played in 2010 with the Jacksonville Jaguars and missed the entire 2011 season with a back injury. All is well on the health front, even though he hasn't ever been a model of durability. He is accurate, decisive and makes sound football decisions.
The biggest problem with Garrard is that Miami will feel tempted to get Tannehill into the lineup at some point. A smart football decision would be to let him learn all season long. Head coach Joe Philbin was in Green Bay when Aaron Rodgers said three seasons behind Brett Favre. We all know how well that worked out for the Packers.
Assuming Garrard hangs on to win the starting job, you really could do worse if you're looking to backup an elite quarterback late in the draft. I don't think I have the stones to draft him as a No. 2, and of course this situation will be fluid as the offseason plays out.
Owners in deep leagues that warrant rostering three passers or setups requiring you to start quarterbacks shouldn't automatically write off Garrard. Simply put, don't ignore his modest fantasy value just because of his recent history.
About Cory J. Bonini
Cory is KFFL's General Manager. In late 2002, he joined the KFFL staff as a research analyst and has been involved in fantasy sports since 1996. A member of the Fantasy Sports Trade Association, as well as Fantasy Sports Writers Association, Bonini has been featured in print, on radio and on scores of websites. Bonini co-hosted Big Lead Sports on SiriusXM Fantasy Sports Radio from 2011 to 2012.
Bonini was recognized with the 2010 Best Article in Print Award from the FSWA and was a finalist for the same award in 2011. In '11, he finished first overall in the FSWA NFL experts challenge that featured 60 of the industry's best competitors.
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