A 10-6 record wasn’t good enough to grab a playoff berth in the league’s expanded format in 2020. Hence the Miami Dolphins still have work to do.
There was the miserable 0-7 start under their first-time NFL head coach. Then came a 5-4 finish which saw the team knock off the eventual NFC East champion Philadelphia Eagles and then travel to Foxborough to stun the Patriots in Week 17. All told, it proved to be an encouraging start to the Brian Flores era with the Miami Dolphins.
This past season, the Dolphins wound up doubling their win total from 2019 and came up with a 10-6 mark. That was good enough to finish second in the AFC East behind the powerful Buffalo Bills. And Flores’ club managed the team’s first winning campaign since 2016. But it wasn’t enough to send the team to the postseason.
It’s not back to the drawing board for Flores and general manager Chris Grier but obviously, there are still some things the club needs to address. The tweaking of the roster continues as the club is parting ways with six-year NFL veteran defensive back Bobby McCain (via ESPN).
The club has added six players in the first round since 2019. A year ago, quarterback Tua Tagovaiola was the fifth player taken overall. This year, wide receiver Jaylen Waddle — Tagovaiola’s teammate with the Crimson Tide — was Miami’s top choice.
The young signal-caller will enter training camp as the starter, a big difference from a season ago. The Dolphins’ offense figures to be an improved unit. On the other side of the ball, Flores’ team found a way to rush the passer and the team led the NFL with 29 takeaways.
Perhaps Flores’ biggest task is finding a way for this club to find a way to defeat Sean McDermott’s club on a regular basis. In 2020, the Dolphins were swept by the Buffalo Bills for the second consecutive year and have not only lost five straight to the division rival from Orchard Park but the club is 1-7 in this series dating back to McDermott’s arrival in Buffalo in 2017.
Who knows what players Grier and Flores could still add to the roster in terms of veterans? There are still some experienced defensive tackles out there who could bolster that group. In any case, it was a season of improvement in South Florida. But the Miami Dolphins haven’t gotten in quite right…yet.