This is the deal:
Everyone was present and accounted for at practice this morning except for Jason Taylor. Randy Starks, who missed yesterday's morning practice, was present for the afternoon practice and today's work as well.
The Dolphins brought in receiver John Dunlap from North Carolina State to work as a tryout player. The fact the Dolphins lost Tab Perry and with some guys feeling a little sore, there is room for Dunlap to get reps. One of those receivers who is sore is David Kircus, who was limited in drills today because of a tight hamstring.
As I reported earlier Chad Henne took the first-team QB reps this morning. I wouldn't say it was a great practice for any of the QBs but that is beside the point. "We're competing and everybody is competing," coach Tony Sparano said.
"I want to see Chad in the first huddle. I want to see Josh in the third huddle sometimes. I want to see Beck in the third huddle."
Sparano explained that watching a QB in the first huddle tells him if he fits. Watching one with the second or third teamers tells him if the QB can rise above the other guys. Good stuff, I think.
Talked to Yeremiah Bell, who is one of my favorites based on how tough the guy is and how active he is on the field. Seems when he's on the field, he's always around the action.
Bell, recovering from a 2007 torn Achilles tendon, said he's 95 percent recovered from the injury. "The other five percent will come over the rest of the offseason," Bell said.
As you know from previous blogs, Bell is running with the first teamers. He loves the new defensive system, calling it "player friendly," and thinks he can prosper in it.
"When I'm in there running with the ones I'm going to do everything I can to stay in there," Bell said.
Chances look good he'll do exactly that.
"I'm really impressed with what he's getting done out here on the field," Sparano said of Bell. "He's a good quarterback [for the defense] to have back there."
Talked to Vernon Carey about the switch back to RT. "I'm back home," he said.
He didn't see the switch back as any sort of insult. He did say it took him some time to re-adjust.
"It was shakey at the beginning but that passed," Carey said. "I'm happy."
Guard Steve McKinney, who is not working because he is still recovering from a knee injury that forced him to miss most of 2007, said his goal is to be ready by the start of training camp.
"I don't know if I'll be 100 percent by then but I'll be practicing," he said.
Best pass of the day came from John Beck who threaded the day's best pass between to defenders and into Derek Hagan's chest. Hagan caught the pass!
Ricky Williams continues to impress. On one running play he vaulted a guard and defensive tackle who were on the ground and clogging the hole. Amazing stuff which leads me to think right now, today, he is the best player Miami has on the field.
Name someone better if you disagree.
By the way, I notice a couple of you are asking how Jake Long or some other offensive linemen are looking. Honestly, I learned long ago that these minicamps are not an indicator of how good or bad an offensive lineman is because there is no hitting or blocking in anger at these camps.
So all I really can tell without blowing smoke is where folks are lining up. It would be ridiculous for me to tell you Jake Long is looking great when he hasn't actually blocked anybody coming at him full speed.
More to come. Check back.