Reflections on the Miami Dolphins’ 2022 Season

Miami Dolphins ended up having a disappointing 2022 season. After being touted as one of the favorites to win the AFC, they ended up barely making it into the playoffs with a 9-8 record. They eventually suffered an early post-season exit after going up against the Buffalo Bills in the Wild Card Round.

This article will take a look back at what went wrong for the team and where they need to improve to make a run at the Super Bowl next season.


Tua Tagovailoa

Trying to grade the 2022 Dolphins quarterbacks is no easy task. The season can only be described as a rollercoaster for Tua Tagovailoa. One week, it seemed he was leading the league in various statistical categories, then the wheels fell off when Miami went to the West coast.

Against San Francisco and Los Angeles, Tagovailoa looked like a rookie but then had an extraordinary performance against Buffalo. Unfortunately, that was followed by another concussive injury that ended his season prematurely. It’s difficult to assign accurate grades without seeing the full story on display, making this an asterisk-worthy position.

Teddy Bridgewater

Teddy Bridgewater proved that he is not a starter-caliber quarterback in the NFL, evidenced by his inability to stay healthy and complete games this season. From the start of the season, it was obvious Bridgewater wasn’t going to (or just couldn’t) rise up and make a difference.

Through his lack of performance, health concerns, and general apathy on the field, it seemed he had already lost interest in making an impact. As he prepares for free agency in 2023, hopefully, teams will have been paying attention and recognize there are better options than Bridgewater as a starter.

Skylar Thompson

Skylar Thompson showed resilience and even professionalism while in the difficult circumstances of his rookie season with the Dolphins. The 7th-round draft pick had no weekly game prep, suffered through an injury to his hand, and still managed to lead Miami down the stretch to make the playoffs – a feat that goes beyond his performance as a player on its own.

Thompson is nowhere near ready for the full-time backup role, yet that may change as we approach 2024. It’s thus worth noting that 2023 will be an interesting season for Miami as they will need to find a reliable backup for Tagovailoa who can run their offense.

Runningback Issues

Mike McDaniel had all the credentials to prove he was a run game guru and the Dolphins did their part by adding two premier free agents in Chase Edmonds and Raheem Mostert, giving us hope that an explosive running game would materialize and push the offense forward in leaps and bounds.

To our dismay, dink-and-dunking was indeed gone but it was replaced with an output that failed to meet expectations when it came to running. The 2022 Miami Dolphins failed to give us what we had imagined for the running game at outset.

Miami’s running game left much to be desired this season. Offensive line issues seemed to plague them in the early goings and then they traded for Myles Gaskin, who has proven himself a capable back when given enough touches.

Even with Gaskin on the team, Miami found that their rushing attack was suffering due to a lack of attempts. In their first four games, they managed only 65, 86, 41, and 85 yards respectively on the ground.

They snapped the dreadful running game performance during their Week 5 match-up against the Jets where they open as 3-point favorites. They managed 137 yards yet still lost the game, 40-17. Week 6 against the Vikings brought similar struggles as Miami finished with 73 rushing yards for the day. Minnesota prevails with a 24-17 victory on the road.

The Dolphins running game has had its woes that can be attributed to a variety of issues. It was affected by poor play from the offensive line, a lack of continuity in playcalling from McDaniel, and output from some of the players.

To improve this area and set itself up for success in 2023, Miami needs to invest in the Free Agency market and put an emphasis on amending its rushing attack. This would significantly improve their chances of making a run at the playoffs next season if done correctly.

Under-utilized Tight End

The 2022 season started off smoothly for the Dolphins’ tight end group as Mike Gesicki was promptly signed with the franchise tag and head coach Mike McDaniel arrived from a system that had made George Kittle successful. Very little was seen from Gesicki in training camp, which was understandable considering his learning curve in the new system. Surprisingly though, he had longer playing times in the preseason games than expected, suggesting that he was learning valuable blocking schemes.

However, it hasn’t been the story during the regular season as Gesicki didn’t have the playing time. The Fins just waste $10 million for a player which was not utilized.

Mike is likely to leave the Miami Dolphins at the end of this season as he does not seem to fit into Coach McDaniel’s offensive plans. While he has expressed his love for the city, it seems as though the Dolphins need a tight end with a different skill set than what Gesicki offers.

Durham Smythe may also be on his way out due to his uncertain contract situation. Unfortunately, neither player had a particularly good performance when it came to receiving and blocking, so overall their time in Miami could be considered a bust.