July 19, 2024

Magic 8 ball predictions for the Miami Dolphins in 2024

Mattel’s Magic 8 Ball has been making predictions since 1946. We ran a few questions about the Miami Dolphins by one, and the results were mixed.

For those unfamiliar with the concept, users ask yes-no questions to the ball, give it a shake and then turn it over to reveal the answer. We opted for an online version to ask the following:

Will quarterback Tua Tagovailoa receive an extension this offseason?

Magic 8 Ball says: Don’t count on it

The extension market for quarterbacks has been booming this offseason. Jared Goff signed a four-year, $212M deal with the Lions, while Jacksonville made Trevor Lawrence the highest-paid player in the NFL. 

Tagovailoa is one of the next quarterbacks in line for a massive extension, but it’s hard to say whether he’ll receive one this offseason.

Last week, ESPN’s Jeff Darlington reported that Miami has yet to offer Tagovailoa a contract that aligns with the quarterback position’s market value. While Darlington mentioned that negotiations are “not to a panic point just yet,” he has “scaled back” his optimism that a deal will be struck soon.  

On the surface, Tagovailoa has the statistical production to warrant top quarterback money, as evidenced by last season’s league-leading 4,624 passing yards and 29 touchdowns. 

However, Tagovailoa’s physical limitations, coupled with the fact that only nine of his 32 wins have come against teams with a winning record, raise concerns about whether Miami should extend him.

There’s no easy answer as to what a Tagovailoa extension should look like, but without a deal before training camp, the 26-year-old will likely have to bet on himself this season. 

Will wide receiver Tyreek Hill enjoy another career receiving year?

Magic 8 Ball says:
Outlook is good 

The eight-time Pro Bowler entered 2023 aiming to post the first 2,000-yard receiving season in NFL history. While he fell short of his lofty goal, Hill still managed to lead the league in receiving yards with 1,799, which was a career-high, and touchdowns (13). 

It’ll be difficult to exceed those totals in 2024, especially considering how many mouths there are to feed in a crowded Dolphins offense, but Hill could be primed to do so as long as he stays healthy.

Despite his impressive production last season, Hill was consistently hampered by injuries. The 30-year-old was impacted toward the end of the season by an ankle injury suffered in Week 14 against the Titans that forced him to miss Miami’s Week 15 matchup with the Jets. 

Hill was coming off three straight 100-yard outings at the time of the injury, but over his last five contests, he averaged 76 yards per game and scored just two touchdowns.

It’s impossible to predict injuries, but if Hill can play 17 games to his full potential, he should be able to set new career highs in 2024. 

Will tight end Jonnu Smith be the offseason addition who makes the biggest impact on offense?

Magic 8 Ball says: Signs point to yes

Last season, the Dolphins boasted one of the top offenses in the NFL, with the unit ranking second in points and first in yardage. Several players, including Tagovailoa and Hill, set new personal records. 

Miami barely received any production from its tight ends, though, as Durham Smythe and Julian Hill combined for 414 yards on 41 receptions.

Although wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. was signed to become a key contributor for the Dolphins, Smith might end up being the team’s top free-agent addition on offense.

Smith, a seven-year veteran, caught 50 passes for 582 yards and three touchdowns for the Falcons last season and was particularly effective after the catch. Smith’s 7.1 yards after the catch per reception were the third most by a tight end who caught at least 50 passes, trailing only Cleveland’s David Njoku and San Francisco’s George Kittle.

Adding that dynamic talent to a position that was essentially irrelevant in the team’s scheme will only make the high-powered Dolphins offense that much more explosive. 

Will the Dolphins stumble late in the season again?

Magic 8 Ball says: Ask again later 

It’s been well-documented that the Dolphins have struggled down the stretch during their two seasons under HC Mike McDaniel. During the 2022 season, Miami lost five late-season games, including four in December, before clinching a playoff berth in an 11-6 Week 18 win over the Jets. 

And last season, the Dolphins dropped a pivotal Week 18 clash against the Bills to choke away what would’ve been their first division title since 2008.

While it remains to be seen whether the Dolphins can change the narrative this season, they aren’t ideally positioned to do so.

Across its final four games, Miami will face three teams that made the playoffs in 2023 — Houston, San Francisco and Cleveland — as well as the Jets, who could finally reach the postseason this season. 

Additionally, the Dolphins’ final two games will be on the road against Cleveland and New York, which could present an issue considering they’ve lost their last 11 games when the temperature is below 40 degrees Fahrenheit, per Stathead.