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Deadline set in Ryan Tannehill, Matt Moore decision

The quarterback race for the Miami Dolphins is wide open, but coach Joe Philbin doesn't plan on dragging the competition out.

Philbin said he hopes to have a starting quarterback in place by Aug. 24, the date of the Dolphins' third preseason game, against the Atlanta Falcons, according to The Palm Beach Post.

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Miami selected Texas A&M star Ryan Tannehill with the eighth-overall pick in the 2012 draft, but the job will not be handed to him immediately. Dolphins owner Stephen Ross made waves last week when he predicted Matt Moore -- who went 6-3 in Miami's final nine games of 2011 -- would start. This was news to David Garrard, who vowed to make a strong push for the top spot.

"You'd love to have it done by after the second preseason game," Philbin said Wednesday on ESPN. "Your third preseason game is when your first unit is going to get the vast majority of the snaps in terms of their preseason allocation. If it's clear earlier we'll make a decision at that point in time, but I'd say by the third preseason game we'd like to have a unit established."

All NFL teams plan to have their QB situation settled by the all-important third preseason game, but Philbin and the Dolphins are working in a unique situation. With three quarterbacks getting their shot at the gig, the race has already started in earnest. Moore, Garrard and Tannehill will be studied on a daily basis.

Said Philbin: "Hopefully, as we move through the OTAs and a portion of training camp and the preseason we can get a good feel as to who has the best leadership quality and who's the best fit for the team moving forward."

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