Tony Sparano just held court with the reporters. I love this guy!
He will not always tell you everything he's thinking. He will never criticize players. But if he doesn't believe he's giving up information that will affect Miami's competitive advantage, he'll become somewhat entertaining.
Sparano is something of a stat freak in that he knows every player's practice repetitions, every player's weight, every player's number of plays from last year. Example:
Rookie Andrew Gardner, who has amazing potential once he gets stronger, leads the team with 103 repetitions. Jason Ferguson, a 34-year-old veteran that Miami must keep healthy, has 53 repetitions.
The groin injury to Matt Roth, which Sparano said "isn't significant," has thrust Jason Taylor to the starting job at strongside outside linebacker. And he has 72 practice repetitions the first three days of training camp.
Sparano says in the coming days and particularly after Saturday's "standup" scrimmage, he will adjust players' repetitions. The players battling for roster spots or starting job that do well in the coming days will get more repetitions next week. Those that don't perform as well will get fewer repetitions.
That's how players separate one from another in the coach's eyes.
Sparano confirmed my report from Tuesday that receiver Brennan Marion suffered a season-ending knee injury. He added that Marion has been waived injured. I asked him what the team is likely to do with the open roster spot created by Marion's departure and he said no receiver is likely to be added right away.
That could mean a couple of things: The players that came in for workouts Tuesday didn't impress and more are on the way. Or the Dolphins might want to add a player at another position to increase the competition at that spot.
As far as Rothgate is concerned, the mystery has become somewhat boring to me. Sparano, still masking the fact he was peeved at Roth for not being totally forthcoming about his injury-illness, is now hinting the player was ill at least early on. Now, obviously, the issue is the groin and that is apparently going to be attended to with rehab and treatment as it has been the past couple of days.
Finally, mentioned Brandon London during the press conference and said he's "starting to feel him a little bit more," which is coachspeak for London has been making a few plays of late. He added that both rookie draftee receivers -- Patrick Turner and Brian Hartline -- have both "flashed" but they are still trying to get from under a mountain of information.
When the information decreases sometime next week, Sparano expects the youngsters to think less and play faster. We'll see.
Hey, the classic training camp moment is a big hit! As a result, I will attempt to share a classic training camp moment after the evening practices. So check back tonight and you'll get the afternoon practice update, PLUS a classic training camp moment update, PLUS an IPhone app update.