This Little Known Quarterback Could Be the Dolphins' Future

Miami Dolphins quarterback Ryan Tannehill.
Miami Dolphins quarterback Ryan Tannehill. Photo by George Martinez
Ryan Tannehill's seven-year saga is finally behind the Miami Dolphins, and Ryan Fitzpatrick has signed a two-year deal to act as a bridge to the future. Now the search begins for the next great Dolphins quarterback. The consensus seems to be Miami will endure a horrific 2019 in the hope of a top draft pick that will net a top prospect in 2020.

The plan sounds great. But the Dolphins should also in invest a mid-round quarterback in this April's draft: North Dakota State's Easton Stick, the man who took over at NDSU from former number-two overall draft pick and Eagles starter Carson Wentz in 2015.

In Stick — the Walter Payton Award (top player in the Football Championship Subdivision) winner, three-year captain, and first-team Associated Press All-American — the Dolphins would be gambling on an intriguing prospect while awaiting a more sure-fire guy in 2020. They'd be proactive, instead of reactive, for once.

Picking Stick would provide options. The team might decide he could fill the job in the future, or flip him for much more than they invested, as teams such as the Patriots often do. It's a solid risk-reward scenario.

The six-foot two-inch, 212-pound Stick may not be a household name for Dolphins fans, but he will likely require only a fifth- to seventh-round pick. Stick ran a 4.62 40-yard dash at the combine and isn't regarded as highly as some quarterbacks in the draft, such as Oklahoma's Kyler Murray. NFL Films' Greg Cosell made the less-than-exciting comparison of Stick to a smaller version of Redskins QB Alex Smith.

Stick isn't known for having the biggest arm, either. But what is impressing a lot of Dolphins fans and creating some buzz are two tapes: one he put together at North Dakota State and another for the predraft combine.

Here's a clip of Stick recollecting some random plays on the spot when asked by a reporter last week:

And his production? Thankfully, Five Reasons Sports' Chris Kouffman, a draft guru and big Stick fan, put together a spliced-up highlight tape that includes every damn snap Stick took in 2018.

The throws, accuracy, and speed in his scrambles definitely impress. This is the sort of prospect worth a Dolphins middle-round pick. Hell, Stick could be the big one. It's worth a gamble.

Easton Stick makes a ton of sense for the Dolphins now. When 2020 gets here, they can decide if he still does.
KEEP MIAMI NEW TIMES FREE... Since we started Miami New Times, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Miami, and we'd like to keep it that way. With local media under siege, it's more important than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" program, allowing us to keep offering readers access to our incisive coverage of local news, food and culture with no paywalls.
Ryan Yousefi is a freelance writer for Miami New Times, a lover of sports, and an expert consumer of craft beer and pho. Hanley Ramirez once stole a baseball from him and to this day still owes him $10.
Contact: Ryan Yousefi