Ryan Tannehill's journey begins

July, 28, 2012
7/28/12
9:02
PM ET
It will start two days late, but the Ryan Tannehill era is officially underway.

Tannehill
The Miami Dolphins have reached a four-year agreement with Tannehill, ESPN’s Adam Schefter reports. The rookie quarterback and first-round pick will join his teammates at training camp Sunday for the 8 a.m. ET practice.

According to Schefter, Tannehill did not want to miss more time while fighting for offset language in his contract. This prevents a player from "double-dipping" in salary if he is cut in his fourth year and picked up by another team. If Tannehill turns out to be a franchise quarterback, the offset language won’t matter.

And so the Tannehill journey begins. Over the next three or four years, he will either develop into a franchise quarterback or forge a path to "Bustville." The Texas A&M product is the first quarterback taken by Miami in the first round since Hall of Famer Dan Marino in 1983. The Dolphins have been looking for the next Marino since his retirement and hope Tannehill can be that player.

But it won't happen right away. Earlier Saturday, we wrote that Tannehill's chances to start in Week 1 were virtually crushed due to his late arrival. He was already a distant third to begin camp and has a ton of ground to make up this summer.

Once the paperwork is done, it's up to Tannehill how long he will hold a clipboard. If Tannehill develops into the player Miami thinks he is, he may be the starting quarterback by the end of this season.

James Walker | email

ESPN Miami Dolphins reporter

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