Dolphins QB Ryan Tannehill: 'There's urgency every year'

DAVIE, Fla. -- Miami Dolphins quarterback Ryan Tannehill just celebrated his 28th birthday this week. It was another sign that the fifth-year starter is no longer an inxperienced quarterback still trying to learn the NFL game.

The time is now for Tannehill. There have been various excuses for his inconsistency, including a poor offensive line and three offensive coordinators in the past four seasons. However, Tannehill must also be accountable for his poor pocket presence, struggles on third down and subpar play during crunch time in the fourth quarter.

The pressure to perform has never been higher for Tannehill. In some ways, the Dolphins are rebuilding, but the team expects a high level of play from the quarterback position.

“There’s urgency every year,” Tannehill said Friday after the Dolphins' first day of training camp. “You play to win games and you play to win Super Bowls. That’s why we’re out here today doing any of this, competing with each other and pushing ourselves trying to get better.”

The Dolphins signed Tannehill to a $96 million extension last year. Expectations were raised for Tannehill but he took a step back and the team finished 6-10, which was the lowest win total in Tannehill’s career.

Tannehill has posted back-to-back 4,000-yard seasons but the team is 14-18 in that span. Owner Stephen Ross said he’s “excited” and remains optimistic about his quarterback this upcoming season.

“I’m not going to say it is do or die,” Ross said. “First of all, that’s the role of the general manager. I think everybody feels very confident and feels very good about Ryan. And I think he has a lot of capabilities.”

The Dolphins hired head coach Adam Gase in January in part due to his ability to work well with quarterbacks. Gase has backed Tannehill this offseason and is optimistic his offensive system will help Tannehill take the next step.

“I think everyone here in the building is excited about having Adam as head coach,” Tannehill said. “He’s a great mind, an offensive mind and motivates players.”