On Sunday, Ryan Fitzpatrick joined the elite Miami Dolphins company when he joined Dan Marino in the team’s all-time record book. His four touchdown, 400-yard performance was enough to get it done.
Fitzpatrick became only the second player in Miami Dolphins history to have four touchdowns and 400 yards passing in a game. The other of course, Dan Marino who did it seven times. Thanks to Josh Houtz for pointing this out on Twitter.
Fans questioned the motives behind the Dolphins signing Fitzpatrick as a free agent last off-season. It wasn’t a “tanking” type move. Over his career, Fitzpatrick has been wildly inconsistent. Easily throwing for multiple touchdowns one week and multiple interceptions the next. This year, he was more consistently good than sporadically bad.
Sunday was a special day for Fitzpatrick who was joined on the sideline pre-game by his wife and seven kids. He played a little catch with them and then played a lot of catch with his receivers as the Dolphins improved to four wins.
Throughout the year, Fitzpatrick has played like a little kid in the backlot of school. Every touchdown celebrated like it was his first when it is likely closer to his last. His future in Miami is uncertain but he has shown enough to warrant staying through 2020.
He is under contract through the 2020 season and there is no reason that he should not stick around. As a starter, he will be a bridge to whomever the Dolphins believe to be their future. As a backup, he will be a valuable veteran to have in the locker room.
In a way, Fitzpatrick is this decade’s Chad Pennington who ironically came to the Dolphins in 2008 at the end of that decade. Pennington didn’t bring much more than a veteran presence after 2008 but maybe Fitzpatrick can. Not so much in wins but if the Dolphins can get a future QB on the roster, unlike Pennington having to work with Chad Henne, then maybe the long-term hopes for the Dolphins will be better.