To keep you up to speed with all the happenings in Davie, camp reports will be a daily feature here at Phins Phocus.
The news trickling out of practice itself has been slow initially in this year’s training camp, mostly because the Dolphins are still in the install phase, which would have been completed in minicamps and OTA’s in a normal offseason, and several key members of the team- free agent acquisitions and restricted free agents- are not permitted to practice yet due to CBA rules.
But we’re still talking football, nonetheless, which surely beats the four months we spent talking about when the lockout would potentially end.
Jake Long sitting out
All-world left tackle Jake Long has been on the sidelines for the Dolphins’ first two sessions. That could be a little worrisome to some when you consider Big Jake was forced to play injured for the second half of 2010.
But worry not; Tony Sparano made it clear yesterday that he’s just taking it slow with Jake because essentially, the guy doesn’t really need all these reps to get ready for the season.
He could probably go the whole year without practicing and still lockdown any premiere pass rusher the league has to offer. Joining Jake in shorts and a cap were the Dolphins’ free agent acquisitions and restricted free agents.
We won’t see the likes of Reggie Bush, Kevin Barnett, or Matt Moore in uniform until August 4th due to CBA restrictions that don’t make any logical sense.
Chad Henne’s rough day
Okay, I actually don’t know if Henne had a poor practice. But if you read the tweets of the reporters that were present, it certainly seems as though he did.
An overthrow here, an under throw there, the Miami media just hasn’t spun Henne’s performance under a positive light through two days. The key words in that sentence are “through two days,” though.
Back away from the ledge, fans. There are plenty of reasons to be optimistic about Chad Henne getting another chance to prove he can be the guy in Miami.
It’s far, and I mean far, from sure thing that the light bulb finally comes on. And if Henne continues to underwhelm in camp and plays poorly in the preseason, don’t count out Jeff Ireland from getting the Broncos back on the line.
But Henne certainly has all the tools you look for in a franchise quarterback. He just needs to finally start grasping the mental aspect of the game, sustain some confidence, and start leading this team with passion.
Will Allen working as second-team boundary corner
If there’s one big disappointment I have with how camp has been covered so far, it’s been the lack of insight into which players are lining up with the first-team.
I’m sure everyone is curious about who is starting where on the interior offensive line, which free safety is getting the nod (assuming it’s Chris Clemons, although Reshad Jones reportedly had a solid first practice), and where exactly Charles Clay is being utilized.
But I’m sure once this free agency frenzy dies down some we will get our normal in depth coverage from the South Florida papers.
One tidbit we have uncovered, though, is that Will Allen is not being looked at as a nickel corner yet. Benny Sapp is still the guy right now, but I expect that to change soon.
The Dolphins are probably just getting a feel for what Allen can still do as a boundary corner before they enlist him in the nickel package. I have a hard time seeing Benny Sapp earning those duties after a mediocre season a year ago.
Brandon Marshall diagnosed with borderline personality disorder
I’m not going to try to explain something I don’t know anything about, but Omar Kelly broke this story earlier today, and it’s a recommended read if you would like a little insight into potentially why Brandon Marshall has struggled so much with anger problems.
Here’s to Brandon getting the treatment he needs to overcome this thing.
Zach Miller, Braylon Edwards rumors circulating
Since late last night, Braylon Edwards has being mentioned as a possible suitor in Miami. I don’t buy it, though. Especially, not when the rumor was started on twitter by a non-credible source.
I guess there’s that whole “give Henne as many weapons as possible” theory, but to me, the Dolphins’ receiving core is set.
Brandon Marshall is a top five talent, Davone Bess is one of the best slots in the league, and Brian Hartline was on a 900-yard pace before he went down with a broken finger.
A weapon the Dolphins could give Henne on a position of need surfaced earlier today, however- a rumor that’s much more believable. ESPN’s John Clayton tied tight end Zach Miller to the Dolphins earlier today by tweeting “Dolphins have cap room for TE Zach Miller. Raiders don’t have room at moment but will try to re-sign him. They can get it done.”
I know the Dolphins are excited about the impact Charles Clay can have as a potential mismatch nightmare, but I think expectations are a little high for Clay considering he’s a sixth-round pick.
The Dolphins and Chad Henne, or Matt Moore I suppose, would benefit tremendously from one of the league’s most productive tight ends.
Yes, Zach Miller has been one of the NFL’s top tight ends, and he’s done it with the likes of Jamarcus Russell, Bruce Gradkowski, and Jason Campbell under center.
As Lee Corso would say, though, not so fast. The Miami media has been unable to confirm any interest from the Dolphins and Jeff Ireland has yet to contact Miller’s agent. As of now, it looks like Miller to Miami is too good to be true.
Sources: Brian Biggane, Andrew Carter, Miami Dolphins in Depth
The Dolphins will be back on the field Sunday at 11 a.m. for the first contact practice of the season.