Getting back to the Dolphins, Pennington said he feels the team is "extremely close" to be able to contend with the likes of New England and Pittsburgh in the AFC.
"Their team has a really good nucleus," he said. "You've got some young players who have been drafted mixed with some free agents brought in. That core is there.
"They were probably the most improved team from the start to the end of the year. To me they were (among) the top five or 10 teams by the end of the year. Their offense was top five in some categories; their defense was playing outstanding."