INDIANAPOLIS -- The chasm between the Ryan Tannehill believers and nonbelievers is Grand Canyon-sized.
On Wednesday, new Dolphins coach Adam Gase stood on the advocate's side, shouting deep praise for his quarterback.
"He has the skill set you are looking for," Gase said at the NFL Scouting Combine. "Really, it's going to be about, how do things go starting in the spring? How does he feel? What do we have to do to adjust to help him? It's not easy to talk about now, it's got to be more of seeing him. How does he do things, what's his process?"
Gase stressed that the process of evaluating and tailoring the offense takes time.
"It's not going to be like all the sudden in two weeks we're going to be like 'alright, I got it.'" Gase said. "It's the entire spring. It's going to take training camp. It's going to take regular season games. This is not going to be one of those things where I'm going to have a great feel for him right away. We're going to have to go through a little bit of process, there is going to be bumps in the road. But that's football."
Much has been made about previous coaching staffs not allowing Tannehill to change plays at the line of scrimmage. Gase said Tannehill will have the ability to get into the proper play, but noted that the entire offense needs to have the understanding in order to make those checks.
"That is the one good thing about this offense, it's really on the players, how much they can handle," he said. "It takes the entire group to understand what's going on because the quarterback can't do it if nobody else knows what to do as well.
"It's something we eventually got to in Chicago. I thought Jay (Cutler) did a good job of handling that, that was something different that he hadn't really done a whole bunch of. But the quarterback in this system does have the ability to move in and out of plays. It's going to be: How much can our group handle? Early, it's probably not going to be as much as it will be later."
Gase was hired specifically to get Tannehill to the next level as a signal-caller. Putting the quarterback in the right offense to succeed will be the first step. Even Gase doesn't know what exactly that will look like yet.
Other notes from Gase:
- Jordan Cameron has been suggested as one possible cut candidate given his salary. Gase said the tight end is an important position in his offense and believes Cameron is a "great fit for what we do."
- Gase sidestepped questions about Olivier Vernon getting the franchise tag and other potential cut candidates, saying the team is "still going through the process."
- The coach pitched for free-agent-to-be Lamar Miller to return, gushing over the running back's ability and saying Miller "knows how I feel about him as a player."
Gase added that he couldn't put a number on how many carries Miller would get in his offense, but said the running back excels in all phases: Pass blocking, receiving and rushing.