DAVIE, Fla. -- Ryan Tannehill solidified his standing as Miami Dolphins' starting quarterback for 2015 -- and possibly beyond. But the immediate future in Miami of backup quarterback Matt Moore remains up in the air.
Moore will become an unrestricted free agent in March. His final game under contract will be Sunday when the Dolphins (8-7) host the New York Jets (3-12) at Sun Life Stadium.
Moore has spent the past four seasons in Miami, including the last three years as Tannehill's backup. But Moore doesn't know if Sunday will be his final game with the Dolphins.
“I’ve enjoyed everything about my time here,” Moore said Friday. “I’m not sure if that’s going to end or if there’s a new chapter. I don’t know yet. When that time comes, I will figure it out then.”
Moore said he "absolutely" plans to play in 2015. He's just not sure of his destination. Moore, who made $4 million this season, is considered one of the top backup quarterbacks in the NFL.
But there could be several factors working against Moore returning to Miami. For starters, the Dolphins do not have a lot of cap space going into next season. That will make it challenging to re-sign key free agents such as Moore, starting defensive tackle Jared Odrick and starting tight end Charles Clay.
Miami also is further convinced Tannehill is the answer at quarterback than the team was two years ago when it last signed Moore as an insurance policy. The Dolphins may not want to spend a high amount again on a backup quarterback next season. Tannehill will have started all 16 games for the third straight season, while Moore has completed just 2 of 4 passes for 21 yards this year.
Moore said he understands the business and is “aware of possible change” with the Dolphins next season.
“If the situation is right, that will happen,” Moore said of coming back. “If there's a situation elsewhere that is intriguing, it might also happen. ... I’m going to kind of feel my way through it.”
Lastly, the Dolphins announced their team awards for 2014. Tannehill won the Dan Marino Award for the team’s MVP in 2014. Defensive end Cameron Wake earned the Don Shula Award for leadership and Jason Fox won the Nat Moore Community Service Award.
“It’s a huge honor for me and the guys around me,” Tannehill said of the award. “In order for the quarterback to play well, the guys around me have to be playing well also. I think it’s huge honor, and I love that I got it. But at the same time, you have to give a lot of credit to the guys around me.”