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When Ryan Tannehill will start for Miami

Dolphins owner Stephen Ross, right, said he hopes to retire Ryan Tannehill's jersey someday. Joel Auerbach/Getty Images

Adam Schefter answers reader questions in his mailbag twice a week. Got a query of your own? Submit it here.


Q: The Miami Dolphins will definitely feel pressure to start Ryan Tannehill right away. Do you think he will start for the Dolphins sometime this season? How many games?

-- Jacoby (Florida)

A: It would be an upset if he didn't wind up starting at some point this season, Jacoby. Miami likes Tannehill too much and he knows too much of the Dolphins offense, and it's not like Bob Griese is manning the fort. Matt Moore is capable of winning some games, but Miami sees Tannehill as a long-term solution at the position. If Tannehill doesn't wind up starting at some point this season, it would be a disappointment for the Dolphins and a sign that their pick wasn't as good as they think.


Q: The St. Louis Rams have improved this offseason, just with the hiring of Jeff Fisher and the accumulation of more draft picks -- along with a strong draft. How much better do you think they'll be this season?

-- Stephen (California)

A: I think the Rams will be considerably better, Stephen. Sam Bradford has to go back to being himself, and the defense has to be tougher, but how could they not be better? That would be a surprise and disappointment. The team still has a ways to go, but it made all the right moves this offseason. And remember, the Rams are set up to succeed in future seasons with all those extra draft picks from the Robert Griffin III trade. They couldn't have handled this offseason much better.


Q: Adam, how do you see the Tennessee Titans QB situation playing out? I'm excited for the Jake Locker era to begin, but I can't help but remember the first month of the season last year when Matt Hasselbeck and Kenny Britt were lighting it up and wonder what could happen if they had an entire season together. With the AFC South wide open, do you think Mike Munchak may go one more season with Hasselbeck?

-- Seth (Tennessee)

A: Seth: I think Hasselbeck opens the season as the starter and holds on to the job as long as he's healthy and productive. The chances are that will be a bit, possibly this whole season. But if the Titans aren't winning, it's time to start thinking about the future and starting Locker. But it would be a mistake to overlook Hasselbeck.


Q: I'm a little concerned over the Drew Brees contract situation as a New Orleans Saints fan. He has a lot of leverage as one of the top-three QBs in the NFL. Do you think there is a legitimate chance he misses any regular-season games?

-- Henry (Rhode Island)

A: Henry, the thing to realize is that each side has some leverage here. Brees is a top-three quarterback and a savior for the franchise. He also must have a long-term deal by July 16, or he can't sign one this season, which gives the Saints some leverage. Right now neither has what it wants, so no one wins. I can't see Brees missing any games, though. But I also didn't anticipate this standoff lasting as long as it has.


Q: The NFC South seems like a division that is wide open. With Luke Kuechly set to start at linebacker, and the rest of the team healthy, do you think the Carolina Panthers can challenge for that division crown?

-- Travis (Oklahoma)

A: It comes back to Cam Newton, Travis. What's scary is that he has a chance to be even better this season. If he is, Carolina can win the AFC South. Why not? The Saints are battling suspensions, the Falcons are fighting their postseason failures and the Bucs are getting used to new coaches. The division is there for Carolina, but it's largely up to how Newton plays.