« Sunday column: This bloke's got hang time | Main | Value of Dolphins draft to be weighed »

Moore and Wooden on the value of experience

Ran into a couple of former Dolphins players at the Jimmy Buffett concert announcement Friday. As I told you in an earlier post, Dolphins great Kim Bokamper and Dolphins mediocre Joe Rose were there. Receiver Nat Moore, a rightful member of the Dolphins Honor Roll, was there as was former safety Shawn Wooden, who is a class act by any definition.

I got to talking with Moore and Wooden when the topic of the new drafted receivers took a left turn and became the topic of the current draft class. That topic also took a detour and got Moore talking about how Ted Ginn Jr. and John Beck were basically thrown under the bus from a planning perspective.

"Look at what the plan was when both those guys were drafted," Moore said. "Beck was supposed to sit a year and learn behind Trent Green. Then Trent Green got hurt and the next guy got benched and now what was supposed to be a two-year timetable is a two-month timetable because Beck is starting.

"Look at Ted Ginn. He comes in as a guy who is going to help the team as a receiver down the road but initially the plan was for him to learn that position while contributing on special teams right away. That was the plan. But they trade away Chris Chambers and now the kid has to play and then they cut Marty Booker and the guy has no veteran teaching him how it's done."

I have long valued the presence of veteran leadership on a team because without it, a team is simply incomplete. Look at all the great teams. None are comprised of just young players. Or just old players. I believe all great teams strike a balance between experience and youth, and are served from both camps.

The same can be said of groups of players on the team. The Dolphins had experience in the quarterback group (Chad Pennington) last year. They had experience in the linebacker (Joey Porter, Akin Ayodele and Channing Crowder) group. They had experience on the defensive line (Vonnie Holliday and Jason Ferguson). They had experience in the secondary at every starting position. They had experience in the running back corps. They had experience at tight end.

But they had no experience of note at wide receiver. And guess which group of players frustrated most with promised potential that did not fully arrive?

The wide receivers.

Davone Bess was a rookie. Greg Camarillo was a first-year starter. Ernest Wilford, the veteran with most experience, was a non-factor. Derek Hagan, a third-year veteran, was a glorified practice squad guy. And Ginn, the No. 1 receiver, was only in his second year and first as a full-time starter.

In other words, the group lacked an experienced mentor among their ranks.

So why is that important?

"It's very important on a football team," Wooden said. "I remember when I came in, guys took me under there wings. Louis Oliver taught me how to break down film. When Sam Madison got drafted, T-Buck (Terrell Buckley) helped him learn the game. When Pat Surtain got drafted the next year, both of them helped him."

So I asked the question that has always floated in my head when this subject comes up. In the absence of an experienced veteran, isn't it the position coach's job to step up and be the mentor?

"It is but they don't do it," Wooden said. "They really can't do it. It's like a family. The coaches are your parents. But the veterans are the older brothers. You listen to your parents, but you try to pattern yourself after your older brothers. When they say things it has more authority because they've just been there. That's how it is on a team. The older players know the tricks, they're on that field, they know what you're going through because they're going through it, too."

And that, according to Wooden and Moore, is invaluable.

"Look, football isn't all about being the best athlete," Wooden said. "I can go over to Liberty City and find five guys who can run a 4.3. But that doesn't make them a professional football player. That doesn't mean they have it up here (pointing to his head) or can be professional or have work ethic."

That other stuff must be learned. And it is Wooden and Moore's opinion that having mentors on the team to teach it to younger players is important. Unfortunately, Ted Ginn Jr. hasn't had a mentor to teach him.

Discuss ....

TrackBack

TrackBack URL for this entry:
http://www.typepad.com/services/trackback/6a00d83451b26169e20115707ebf89970b

Listed below are links to weblogs that reference Moore and Wooden on the value of experience:

Comments

Feed You can follow this conversation by subscribing to the comment feed for this post.

Cream always rises to the top, so I don't buy this argument about not having veteran leadership. If Ginn was a good WR, he would have done a lot more than what he's done.

As far as Beck goes, even when Trent went down, he stayed on to "help" Beck in his development, so don't tell me cause Trent went down, Beck couldn't grow as a QB.

One more reason to get Boldin ;)

HOW we know that mr mentor isn't trying to sabotage the kid who's helping to keep his own job ? wasn't that the plan when Nick satan was here ?

one more reason to get JT the best mentor of all,1-15

First of all, I think it was a cheap shot to call Rose a "mediocre." From what I remember he was a good player for us.

I also disagree that every player has to have another guy "hold his hand" and teach him everything. Its up to each player to learn his craft by asking questions of coaches and others that he may know. Maybe he's friends with other veterans that he talks to that we don't know about. You may not want some of these guys teaching your young players anything.

It seems to me that the smartest players learn from good coaches, not other players.

Mando, this material was a waste as a blog item. You should have turned this info into an actual article. That last quote by Wooden is one of the best I've seen in my long blog reading history.

Armando - you're stretching things to try to justify your point. If you count a mediocre David Martin or a previously career backup Fasano as experienced TE's, you have to count Wilford. If you count injury-plagued Y Bell or a previously situational player like Renaldo Hill as experienced Safety's, you have to count Wilford. As mentioned above, Trent Green was still on the team to mentor Beck. Ginn is getting on-the-job training, which is valuable. An experienced WR can help teach, which is hopefully what Wilford did last year. And, for the record, I have never bashed Ginn. I like him. He can catch, he can run, he can return kicks & punts. He is learning. He is getting better. And he does contribute. He has his weaknesses and maybe he drafted too high and maybe he's not a true # 1 WR, but that doesn't mean he's not valuable.

Mando,

Great insight into the Dolphins' WR situation. As logical as that seems, I thought Devon Bess did a great job learning the trade without that veteran mentor last season. In addition, I saw some progress with regard to route running from Ginn without that veteran mentor also. While having it "up here" goes a long way, I just don't think Ginn has the size or hands of a #1 WR. To counter Moore and Wooden's argument, someone who is physically superior like a Calvin Johnson per se, can do just fine in his rookie year without that type of veteran to mentor him. Here's hoping Turner can make that leap in the future.

AussieKen, nfl team doesn't have time to hold hands and mentor ,theyhave 16 games to play and it's a pro sport not a high school .that's why there's a good coach like T.S and there's Nick.Satan can put great single players together to form a unit team ready to preform well.this argument about veterans is for the losers teams only so they can justfy the big losses coming their way

WR the only position with no older brothers.

Excellent post. Thanks, Mando. And to the drip who called Joe Rose a good player, please get a clue. Rose caugth 25 passes his best season and never came close again. He didn't start. He couldn't block. He only played on special teams and didn't tackle. Mediocre is being kind.

Oh, and he's a terrible analyst on the radio broadcasts. Get real.

Armando,
Look to be in the NFL you have to want it. Did Payton Manning have a mentor on the team to teach? Yes it helps but come if you’re good it doesn't mater. Ted (Side Line) Ginn will never be a #1 WR. He is too scared of getting hit that’s why he stays by the sidelines. Do you really think a Mentor can teach him how to take the hits? I give this guy 2 years tops and he will disappear. He has no heart and no fire.

David Martin had a bunch of catchs last year and was often a starter. He started every game in 2007. He's a million times better than Wilford and he's a six year vet. He has epxerience. Ooops another typo and more grammar problems. We're used to it. Dueces.

The veterans argument is the looser team ticket to a lousy seasons

WE WILL WIN THE SUPER BOWL WITH HELP OF OUR GREAT VETERANS ,WE MUST AND WE WILL SIGN 8 VETERANS TO HELP AND THE YOUNG PLAYER TO THE PROMISE LAND.EVERY YOUNG STUD MUST HAVE A MENTOR DUDE TO HELP HIME OUT'


GO FINS OMEGA 3 FOOD
TROUT
CLAMD RED KIDNY BEANS
FETTA CHEESE
ALMOND
MANGO

Joe Rose sucked. The only reason he was on the team was to launder Dan Marino's jock after the game when he was done using it.

C'mon, FLPD..DAN sucked way more ,he didn't deliver the ball most of the time to Rose.

Cream always rises to the top, so I don't buy this argument about not having veteran leadership. If Ginn was a good WR, he would have done a lot more than what he's done.

As far as Beck goes, even when Trent went down, he stayed on to "help" Beck in his development, so don't tell me cause Trent went down, Beck couldn't grow as a QB.

Posted by: D | May 11, 2009 at 11:07 AM

Apparently you never played ball because if you did you would understand and value what
Moore and Wooden are saying. I remember growing up playing AAU and High School Ball
there was always that player ahead of you that beat you in drills beat you in practice and made you a better player because not only did he push you to be better but also helped with the skills. I agree one hundred percent.
Everyone thinks because a player goes 1st round he's automatically the next Jerry Rice
or Clinton Portis (wanted to say Emmitt but he went to Florida). Truth is if you can get the value you put in to a player most teams are satisfied or should I say pacified. I am willing to bet you that Stafford has a better rookie year than Sanchez. Why? because he has Dante Culpepper. Not saying Dante is the better quarterback but Matt has a teacher both on the field and off in a coaching staff and a mentor!

strong, ROSE as far as i know didn't play in any team with 1-15 season record

Dolphin’s preseason games
Aug.17 At 7:30 home game VS. Jaguars
Aug.27 at 8p.m. on Fox VS. Buccaneers
Sept.3 in the superdome at 8 p.m. VS. Saints

one more reason to get JT the best mentor of all,1-15

If you remember JT didn't want to mentor or help any of the 08 draft class get better!
That is not a mentor. A mentor teaches through showing, doing. A coach teaches technique
and fundamentals. A good mentor shows a young player how to execute with good technique and sound fundamentals.

I believe that veteran leadership helps, but up to a point! I don't believe that having that veteran leadership is the determining factor whether a player will become great or not!

First of all, I think it was a cheap shot to call Rose a "mediocre." From what I remember he was a good player for us.

I also disagree that every player has to have another guy "hold his hand" and teach him everything. Its up to each player to learn his craft by asking questions of coaches and others that he may know. Maybe he's friends with other veterans that he talks to that we don't know about. You may not want some of these guys teaching your young players anything.

It seems to me that the smartest players learn from good coaches, not other players.

Posted by: AussieKen |


true every player doesn't need someone to hold his hands but they do need a mentor on the field especially in developmental areas ( WR,TE,DE,DT,CB,FS,O & D lines)After all this is a team sport each guy depending on the next to shut down Randy and Brady and Ryan.
Aussie rules football is a little different.
Not to mention not all football players are smart players.

Veteran leadership and teaching is why Zach Thomas and Mike Vrebal are in Kansas City right now.

You saw it last night when veteran Paul Pierce trusted new starter Glen Davis to take the final shot. More and Wooden know of what they speak.

Now, sign Jason Taylor.

IM f'ing sick and tired of people makeing excuses for ted ginn. A great reciever goes after the ball agrues to get the ball thrown his way goes up for it fights for it and takes it, is willing to rape people to get it. At any f'ing year in the league experiance or no experainace.

Hey guys just stopped in real quick to ask u guys to check me out after i made the game winning shot in the highlight it shows me manhandling a kid on the sidelines.

Glen Davis, is 3 years now w/ celitics
get paid millions a year
his avrg 20 points last 4 games
that was his shot and he was open

that was the coach who decided who's going to take the shot not some veteran trusting a young player .

P.s ...the magic team has almost 90 percent young players and the job the ir coachdid is impressive ,it's the coach not the mentor crap

I remember Shawn Wooden had an online diary his rookie year, before blogs were "invented". I loved it and made me enjoy Wooden more as a player and a person.

Any chance of th Hearld doing something like that this year with any of the rookies? I thought it was the most interesting look inside pro football camps.

when your wideouts both have 1300 yds and31 td's between them your tight end is gonna have mediocre stats... and give ted ginn a chance we went downtown 5 or 6 times last season. no reciever is gonna shine like a #1 in an offense like that.

I'm assuming Jeff Ireland and Bill Parcells understood the need to mentor a younger player when they signed Ernest Wilford. But when he busted, the signing not only backfired from a production standpoint but a mentoring standpoint.

My concern is that the Dolphins haven't addressed the problem. They didn't add a veteran to the WR corps. They went out and drafted two rookies who also will not have mentors.

This is an omission of significance IMHO.

I think it's funny that most (if not all) player/former player comments I have ever read about Ginn are positive, while so many fans' comments are negative. Wooden & Moore didn't say that every single player needs a mentor, they did say it's important, though. Some guys can just do it on their own, others benefit from a mentor. Ginn, I think it's hardly arguable, probably fits into the latter category. That doesn't make him a failure.

Frankly, I think his entire 1st year was a complete waste in terms of his development. He probably had to un-learn a ton of crap he 'learned' that year. I think he has a lot to work on, but I am happy with his overall development so far. If he improves as much from year 2 to 3 as he did from 1 to 2, we'll all be happy with where he is.

I cannot believe anyone is retarded enough to argue Joe Rose was a good player. He was trash. Armando you are being kind to call him a mediocre player. He has improved his stake in life, however, and now is a very mediocre broadcaster.

Not only was it a cheap shot referring to Joe Rose as something less than he was, a solid third down receiver as a tight end, but it was also pure hyperbole to suggest that Kim Bokamper was anything more than a solid d-end. The best players on those teams defensively were the forgotten ones - Larry Gordon, Earnie Rhone, Bob Brudzinski, Baumhower and Betters. Bokamper washed out as a LB and was a decent pass rusher as an end, Nothing more, nor less. Expect better from you Armando.

How about a little WR comparison...

Nat Moore (who I think most will agree is one of the best all time Miami WRs)

2nd year
(rcpt, yards, TD)
40-705-4

Best year
52-765-12

84-85(Marino years Moore's 11th and 12th season-but on one of the most prolific passing offenses in NFL history)
94-1274-13 combined

Average (13 years)
39.23-580.46-5.69

Ted Ginn
1st year
34-420-2 (Green,Beck....)

2nd year
56-790-2

Avg.
45-605-2

All stats are from NFL.Com

Granted TG needs to work a little better in the Red zone, but that will come. His numbers certainly indicate to me he doesn't deserve all the bashing he gets. It doesn't look to me like Ginn is such a horrible player.... Feel free to comment(Cuban Menace??).


I agree it is nice to have someone out there on the field with you that you can bounce ?s off of but...well, whatever. Who was holding Bess hand? Seems he took the bull by the horns, pretty impressive as a rookie. Maybe he can hold Teddys hand?

Think about this though. I agree with u but what about this ....a group of wide recievers that work TOGETHER and figure thigns out on their own, kinda like teaching yourself a language. if you work yourself ,you devlop special ways , unique ways, of doing it and u get it done, hopfully that will hapopne with our young guys

So, the receivers coach doesn't have time to teach and mentor the receivers? Doesn't have time to teach them how to break down film? Give me a break.

Without question, having a veteran mentor is a good thing. But a necessary thing?

Now in his third year, Ginn should be that veteran mentor to the rookie WR's. OK, he does not have 5 years of NFL experience, but he should know a lot more about the NFL game than the rooks at this stage.

Camarillo should help too, even though he has just one shortened year of experience he knows how to get open. Since he is still rehabbing he should have plenty of time to work with the rookies.

If having a vet mentor for the guys was such a need, I would bet the Fins would bring in a former WR to be the "assistant WR coach". Next best thing to having a vet WR on the roster.

ALL THESE COMMENTS RE,MY HERO ROSE ARE MISSING THE POINT THAT HE HAD A BAD TEAM AND DAN WASN'T THAT GREAT THAT YEAR EITHER.HE SUCKE ALMOR 8 GAMES THAT YEAR

STOP THE MADNESS
GO ROSE
GO PHINS OMEGA 3 FOOD

TROUT
LIVER
KIDNEY W/ OLVIS
MASHED POTATOES W/BLUE CHEESE
PIZZA W/ GROUND PORK

If Joe Rose wasnt' known for comentating he would be remembered as much as Davis Martin in the long run.
Oh I forgot Martin had a better season last year than Rose had in all his career.

So much bashing for a unit that was very strong for the Dolphins last year. All WRs, TEs should be complimented for what they provided - ok, maybe not Wilford. But they all provided career years and all promise to get better. If you're a real fan, you should appreciate them.

Ginn is on track to becoming a consistent 1,000 yard receiver in this league. Think about it, if his stats appreciate as much from year 3 to 2 as they did from 2 to 1, that's a 1,000 yard receiver and at least 7 tds. This doesn't include how he continually makes defenses look slow when he goes hog wild on those end arounds. Tedd Ginn will ask you all after this year how his c0ck tastes!

I agree with Moore and Wooden. Having played high school and college ball, veteran starters definitely can teach new guys tricks of the trade. The coaches can only teach so much, but practicing with and against players who have experience playing the game will bring up your level of play.

Saying Joe Rose was a mediocre player was a cheap shot for sure, even if he was. Why even say it?

i never here this mentor talk any where but in football ,again i hear it only with the lousy teams only to justfy their lousy record and their lousy coach.
1- you draft the best players
2-you pay million per year yeas for a player
3-you have only 16 games to play a year
4- you spend all your life playing and studying football ..AND NOW
5-YOU more than 5 coaches on the staff.


AND YOU NEED A MENTOR PLAYER TO HOLD YOUR HANDS ???
let us hire mentors to sabotage the work that T.S did


"Saying Joe Rose was a mediocre player was a cheap shot for sure, even if he was. Why even say it?"

Why did you say it MJZ? You are a hypocrite.

Tedd Ginn will be a very good WR. People hate him , because Cam drafted him high. (Brady Quin isnt that good either ). Ginn made strides last year , and he will be a lot better this year, he is getting coached, and Ginn does work very hard. He will get there.

And sorry to some guys, but he was OPEN deep a lot last year

Even though development sounds the same for each player, it has different paths.
Outstanding guys have something above average and can skip some growing pains because they can have impact just using their advantage.
But NFL competition reduces such possibilities and requires bigger efforts to refine abilities and learn technique.
This older brother argument is pretty weak on outstanding skilled guys, including bigger, faster & stronger receivers unlike any WR at our roster.
And it makes less sense to point Ted Ginn Jr. lacking of such image. Chris Chambers was his "older brother" since High School and his father is a very talented WR coach.
I know it sounded ridiculous when coach Cameron mentioned we drafted Ted Ginn & family, but he was right about Ted Ginn Sr. value as developer of his son.
I love Ted Ginn Jr.'s attitude on playing harder than most and his firm discipline, but we must be clear that he doesn't have the classic size of a #1 go-to receiver. Also he has learned 2 DIFFERENT systems in his 2 FIRST years on the league. He'll prove his worth in 2009, with bigger understanding of our offensive schemes and synchrony with Chad.

Armando we congratulates ya'll. You use the word mediocre once and get 15 persons clicking on your joint. Wish we had that kind of juice.

MJZ, I just read your first post and am amazed how little you know about football. You are a bigger football retard than Cam Cameron.

Joe Rose is an assclown.

omarkooky , armando is the master of this blog , no thing less than amazing coming from him. in fact i was not going to comment today but once I saw the word MEDICORE, i said to myself ... no sex today

Joe Rose is the apple of Dan Marino's eyes , he made him better

4 all of the people who never played it's so true that you learn more from older players than coaches. if you never were on the front line of a war how can you teach me to survive. you can teach the basics but that guy who fought the golf war and the war in iraq can teach me better than the general. even if he puts me in a spot to succeed. I learned how to ride a bike from someone who rode, not someone who watched someone ride.

Torry Holt was the perfect fit for the Dolphins...

The golf war ?

THE STUPID GUYS UP HERE ARE STILL DOUBTING THIS EVEN THOUGH THESE ARE EX PROS SAYING THIS. SOME PEOPLE CAN NEVER LEARN.

I like boys.

AFC EAST CHAMPS, FROM A CHAMP TO ANOTHER ..TIME HAS PASSED THAT CRAP OF TEACHING AND MENTORING,THE FUTURE IS NOW, LET'S PLAY AND WIN NOW, WE WERE TALKING BLA BLA BLA BBLA BLA BLA FOR LAST 8-9 YEARS AND EVERY ONE KEPT CHANGING THE PLAN FROM THE EVIL CAMERONE TO SATAN.

ALL PLAYERS MUST SHUT UP AND SHOW THE FANS WHY WE PAY FOR TICKET,FOOD AND DRINKS
JUST PLAY LIKE A PRO, NO MORE TALK,
GO FINS 3 OMEGA 3 FOOD

YOU THE DRILL BY NOW

I was insulted by last night's sickening display on "The Celebrity Apprentice." The act of turning Joan Rivers into a hero was morally obscene. This woman, who cavalierly tosses out words like "Nazi" and "mafia," and then decries others for their shortcomings and immorality is too much to take. Yes, Annie Duke is arrogant, obnoxious, annoying and disagreeable. But she is more talented, a better player, and she never stooped to the obscene levels of Joan Rivers. She comported herself professionally in the boardroom, despite the vicious slings and arrows she was forced to endure from Ms. Rivers.

But getting back to football, I remember the Dolphins' triumverate at tight end in the 1980s - Dan Johnson, Joe Rose and Bruce Hardy. They said that Hardy was the best blocker, Rose the best pass receiver and Johnson the most complete tight end. I wonder if my good friend Armando has a feud going with Joe Rose that impelled him to use the term "mediocre." I'll discuss it with Armando the next time we play golf.

REMEMBER MINNESOTA MOSS HAD CARTER NUFF SAID

Guys, Joe Rose is a good guy and I like him. He's good for the Dolphins.

The fact of the matter is during the live broadcast of the concert, he and Bokamper joked on air that I was dancing around to the music. It was a joke and we all had a laugh.

So I'm returning the banter in kind here. Nothing personal and it is just kidding around. So relax.

Joe knows more than anyone he was a mediocre player and I'm sure he would remind me I've had a mediocre journalism career so far. No biggie.

1 2 3 »

The comments to this entry are closed.