If you assume Josh Rosen is going to waltz right into South Florida and become the Dolphins’ starting quarterback, think again.
He’s guaranteed nothing but a roster spot.
Anything else will be earned.
There will be a real, legitimate competition between Rosen and Ryan Fitzpatrick in training camp.
And Rosen knows it.
So Day 1 as a Miami Dolphin was a success if for no other reason than that.
Rosen, the former No. 10 pick acquired Friday from the Cardinals for a second and fifth-round pick, met with Miami reporters Monday after practicing with his new teammates for the first time.
And he came into the room with the right mindset — a starting job is earned, not given.
When asked if he begins his time as a Dolphin as Ryan Fitzpatrick’s backup, Rosen replied:
“I don’t know. I think on paper I am, but coach [Brian] Flores said we don’t really have any starter right now. And I think that’s healthy, have good competition everywhere. Whether I was the first or seventh-string I wouldn’t change what I did every day.”
Rosen added: “They just wanted me to come in and compete. I’m excited and ready for it. ... At the end of the day I just want to come in and play football and compete and have fun. The timing on when I play or not or if, that’s not up to me. It’s kind of similar to the situation the last couple of days. I just control what I can control and take each day by day.”
Good stuff, right?
But in truth, if Rosen is the backup come September, he will surely be disappointed.
Because even after last year’s rookie struggles — his passer rating (66.7) was worst among the league’s 33 qualifying quarterbacks — he remains confident that he is a franchise quarterback.
Just not for the franchise that drafted him.
“I think I am a good quarterback,” he explained. “And I think I am a good leader.”
And he’s motivated like never before.
Asked about the Everest-sized chip on his shoulder, he replied:
“I don’t think my chip [can] grow any more. It might tip over.”
But no pot-shots in the Cardinals.
In the days since they selected Kyler Murray first overall, effectively ending Rosen’s time in Arizona after just one season, he has consistently taken the high road about his former employers.
He shrugged off the Cardinals’ ultimately empty tweet of support from Feb. 12 — it read “Y’all are having fun with speculation but ... Josh is our guy” — calling it “irrelevant.”
He likened the past weekend to getting drafted twice; Chris Grier and Flores even called him from the war room to welcome him to the organization.
Now, it’ll be up to Flores, Chad O’Shea, Jim Caldwell and “Mr. Marino,” as Rosen called Miami’s Hall of Fame quarterback, to fix what went wrong in Arizona a year ago.
Rosen already has an idea, saying he’s already “learned a lot of the little things” it takes to be a successful quarterback.
“I mean even small stuff like scheduling,” he said. “Knowing how much time you have to allot yourself for pre-practice warmup. How much you need post-practice. Your recovery. How you ration out your studying, Monday though Sunday. I mean, I think a lot of those little things, here and there. And just being more efficient with my time. That’s not even including all of the stuff on the field with the X’s and O’s. That’s another whole conversation.”
A conversation for another day, no doubt.
But if he applies those lessons from an otherwise lost 2018, expect Rosen, not Fitzpatrick, to be under center Week 1 against the Ravens.
“Just gotta handle what you can handle,” he said. “It’s not going to change anything football-wise what I do. I’m still going to try and complete every ball and do every play really well, do what the coaches ask of me. But you obviously kind of have to be a little bit conscious of the leadership aspect. You can’t be breaking down team huddles as a backup. There’s definitely a sense of awareness that you gotta understand on where your position is on the team. But I’ll always regardless of that try to sort of inspire and motivate and push everyone in a positive direction.”