Cameron Wake, Miami Dolphins’ defensive guru, knows that almost is never good enough to the Football Gods. Almost getting in the end zone doesn’t put six points on the scoreboard and swinging a kick just an inch outside of the uprights does not earn a franchise three points for an overtime victory. Almost getting it done just doesn’t get it done in the National Football League, yet the Miami Dolphins are in a much better position than they were in last season.

Towards the end of the season, backup quarterback Matt Moore filled in and gave the Dolphins a solid look into the future. However, it was obvious that he would not be the long-term answer. It became a strategic rebuild in Miami’s lockerroom and anyone that took a single step or almost proved that they were worthy of being a part of the restructuring process was immediately cast into free agency. Just ask Chad Johnson what it means to be almost all of the athlete he used to be with some of the production he had before and all of the distraction.

Ryan Tannehill stepped into the starting quarterback position, with considerably less glamour than Robert Griffin III or Andrew Luck did, and handled it with the mental maturity that a rookie carrying a franchise needs to have. Comparing them to the rest of the AFC, Wake and the Dolphins have a lot to smirk about. Ben Roethlisberger and the Pittsburgh Steelers could not muster a win against the Cincinnati Bengals to keep their playoff hopes alive.

The New York Jets may have a record that is closely comparable, however, the numbers do not adequately explain their lack of relevance in present-day NFL. The Dolphins are a much more structured franchise even with a first-year coach, a preseason domestic issue and a rookie starting quarterback to tout. Mark Sanchez and the Jets are as discombobulated as any franchise NFL audiences have had a chance to poke fun at for a while.

The San Diego Chargers have a quarterback who has almost permanently fallen from grace. Nothing he does demonstrates a top-tier field manager and Tannehill is quickly developing into a quarterback that his team can depend on in the trenches. Wake, who has been purposely mentioned in the beginning of this article, carries the franchise into their period of rebuilding. Although they have not been highlighted often throughout the season for the positive things they have been able to accomplish, the Dolphins are not too far off from being a true contender.

Miami needs more than just Brian Hartline to be the team’s most reliable receiver. Tannehill could use another season or two under his belt. The jury is still out on whether or not Reggie Bush is the future of this team’s rushing statistics. The defense needs to build around Cameron Wake’s energy, athleticism and agility before they can rest assured it will hold steadfast against some of the most offensively sound franchises around the league.

Yet, almost is not good enough to get to the playoffs or to be mentioned anytime past December. Therefore, the Miami Dolphins probably will not be heard of too often after this point. Patience is a virtue. Wake understands that almost doesn’t count, but it will not be too long until that almost is 100% complete.Watch Miami Heat Live Stream Free Online Game Streaming

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