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Just Killing Time Until Sunday...

Good morning, folks. Armando's still out. David J. Neal substituting.

The Friday injury report lists only one Dolphin, cornerback Vontae Davis, and he's Probable with his knee injury. For Atlanta, rookie safety William Moore is out with a hamstring injury. Under Probable are defensive end John Abraham (knee), running back Jerious Norwood (knee), long snapper Mike Schneck (knee), center Todd McClure (calf), linebacker Tony Gilbert (hamstring) and defensive end Chauncey Davis (foot).

Sparano said he's more nervous now than he will be Sunday. He's a prep nut who, like most coaches, is a worrier: "I just got off the elevator with (outside linebackers coach) Jim Reid. I said, "That was practice No. 40. I wish we had 40 more."

Contrast that with rookie cornerback Sean Smith, who almost seems to float about happily. Sparano chuckled, "Sean's a young player. Those guys feel a little bulletproof. That's OK. It's us old hunting dogs who like to play the "What If?" game and look for loopholes, obstacles, all the things that jump in front of you. Sometimes, you are looking for things that aren't there. These young guys...look, they come from big colleges, play in front of big crowds, played with pressure. So, for them to be a little loosey-goosey is OK. As a coach, when I look at our team, that's one of the things I don't want to stop. I'd hate to have a bunch of robots out there."

In practice, attendance was perfect. The Friday music in the Little Nicky Memorial Practice Bubble was "I'm So Hood" followed by Aerosmith's "Dream On." As for practice itself, the defense seemed to be using a safety on the tight end. If the Dolphins were really worried about me putting that in this blog, they wouldn't have done it with the entire media standing there. Heck, maybe they're hoping I do put it in and then do something different. Whatever.

I'll be writing Matt Ryan and Jake Long for the paper tomorrow. I understand what the Dolphins did in playing it safe with Long even if Ryan turns out to be a better player. The Imperial Triumvirate's philosophy is you start up front with people who can move other people and protect your quarterback. Makes sense if you look at what's happened to some pretty good quarterback prospects who went to bad teams that couldn't run and/or couldn't pass protect (see "Jim Plunkett, Archie Manning, Tim Couch, David Carr"). Plunkett won two Super Bowls with very good Raiders teams as he revived what had been a dead career, but he had one of my favorite lines on just how much a quarterback's success relies on those around him.

Plunkett had just had his comeback season that ended with the Raiders winning the Super Bowl, the same year Peyton's daddy, taken No. 2 overall after Plunkett in the 1971 draft, had just gone through the 1-15 Aints season in New Orleans. Pittsburgh had won four of the six previous Super Bowls.

"My career wouldn't have had all these peaks and valleys if I had been with Oakland for 10 years. You know who I feel for? I feel for Archie Manning. He's a nice guy and a hell of a quarterback, and if he had been with Pittsburgh all along and Bradshaw been with the Saints, Archie would be the star and Pittsburgh still would have won those Super Bowls. It's the team you're with that matters."

Matt Ryan and Joe Flacco were helped by running games that took the heat off of them and not with just one back, but two and three who could arrest a defense's attention by ripping off chunks of yardage behind a strong line. Flacco had Derek Mason, a veteran possession guy. Ryan had Rowdy Roddy White, a big play guy who also lead the league in third down conversion catches. The Dolphins didn't have the line or the receivers to support a Ryan or Flacco going into the 2008 draft. So, you build the support system while finding a quarterback.

Besides, quarterbacks are such a dice roll. Many a good NFL personnel man still working and respected would've taken Ryan Leaf over Peyton Manning in the 1998 draft. In terms of raw passing talent, many coaches and scouts will tell you few if any in NFL history surpassed Jeff George and look at his career. What you can't always tell about quarterbacks are the intangibles -- leadership ability, physical and mental resiliency. As Ben Roethlisberger said in Sports Illustrated's quarterback round table, toughness is playing the worst game in your life, everything going wrong and staying in there, still trying to pull it out.

It's still too early to gauge how good Long's going to be as is the case with Ryan. Long does strike me as the methodical type who would literally list his deficiencies, put the list in a desk drawer, then work quietly, patiently to check each one off as he removed it from his game. 

Speaking of lines, Sparano didn't sound entirely comfortable with where the offensive line is right now because he feels they didn't truly get their five starters set until relatively late in training camp. I think the run game matchup Sunday favors the Dolphins in a 150-yard rushing day kind of way. It'll be interesting to see what they do against a weak run defense.

I'll update again later. Discuss, disagree, but keep it PG.

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may be it went in the bowl in the bath room .the blackberry that is .

PS ...do you have to tell us it's a blackberry BOLD .give us a break .will you

Well, it's official, everyone thinks we were a fluke last year. Nobody has us doing better than 8 & 8 or in the playoffs at all. This is exactly where I want to be. One more chance to shock the nation!

I really starting to wonder where is Armando?

Has he been kidnapped for information for cheating by Bill Bellichek and Patriots?

Has he joined dark side and gone to patriots as volunteer?

This very important Dolphin news that we need more detail on Mr. David J.

I am holding you blackberry as ransom until you release information.

Wonder why we aren't going after Matt Jones? He's much more polished than Turner and is still young. Doesn't use the Yayo anymore either.

Akarojo,

Warren Sapp pick Dolphin for repeat as AFC East champ and go for playoff! He the only one, but I seen a couple of people say we maybe wildcard.

The blacker the berry the sweeter the juice.

In practice itself. That one sentence about football, the only little nugget you have today, is probably why the Phins don't want tweeting, texting, instant messaging. Dolphins security probably has your phone (which should be pinned to your sleeve like a pair of mittens), and you can pick it up on the way to your new job with the Atlanta Journal Constitution.

"As for practice itself, the defense seemed to be using a safety on the tight end,"

David, I am pretty sure the Dolphins dont want you to be publicizing these kinds of details 2 days before a game. If you want the organization you are covering to like you (and give you information for your stories), I would strongly advise you not to post info that an opponent might find usefull, even if it is just a little usefull.

First off the blackberry isn't even that great. I have a mogul (or touch pro) with windows mobile and it's the best handheld by far. It doesn't everything the blackberry does except much better and does even more. It's almost like an I-phone but without the mac crap.
Also I am excited about finally seeing the Ol' Alligator Gar out there on the field Sunday. I will have drink in hand at 10am.... Hey that rhymes.

what's going on with armando???

At least one other person noticed what a boneheaded decision you made. Pathetic.

Anyone notice Big Ben throwing frozen ropes into traffic and giving his receivers a chance to make a play last night.
That's what we need to see sunday: qb played like a man!
I want the Falcons secondary LIT UP!

" I understand what the Dolphins did in playing it safe with Long even if Ryan turns out to be a better player."

I think you have to put out the difference between being a "better" player and how valuable a top-end QB is versus the risk of choosing a prospect when the selection is made.

Might work out that we would have been better off with Ryan, but that's only after we know he's not the next high pick bust at QB.

Long is exactly what we thought we were getting, and we got that with minimal risk. He was the smart choice (and our QB's for the next decade or so will be grateful for it).

Before Parcells signed with Dolphins he agreed to go to Falcons, Wayne H just made him a better offer.
Think about it.
If Dolphs took Ryan, Long, Henne, sparano & Pennington would be Falcons.
If Dolphins took Long then Clady would have been 2nd pick and Henne would still be behind Pennington in Atlanta.
Who knows where Ryan would be.

Hey Mando, what's the news on Turner? Haven't heard too much and wanting to know what's up with my So. Cal Boy... Will he be active on Sunday??

Jon Abraham,
Weren't you the bust number 1 pick of the Jets about 6 years ago?
Now isn't that the pot calling the kettle black?

In fact john abraham you were drafted by Parcells no?

Yes I have to agree. We need more Dolphin info and less updates re: your missing blackberry.

PS-If you are a real man, you will accuse Jpeazy that he has it. ;-)

oh the beers were stacked in the beer cooler with care hoping that saint penne whould soon be there

go ronni, go ricky, go joey, go jason (both of ya) even lil teddy ginn and big ole sean my boy

the rest is history....having wings for dinner sunday night

Who cares about your phone? Do your job and write something worth my time.

Replace it with an iPhone. Now u have an excuse!

Excuse me America, how did Matt Ryan do in crunch time last season? Why isn't he knocked for that awful playoff game? To start the game, Ryan threw an INT (leading to TD). Coming out of Halftime Matty lost a FUMBLE (that A.Rolle returned for TD). Prince Matty threw another INT in Q3 just after ARIZ went up 28-17. Then, to seal ARIZ's victory, Matty was sacked in the ENDZONE w/ 12min left in Q4 (this was on 1st down).

WEEK 17 (vs. lowly STL): 10/21 160, 1td 2int.
WEEK 16 (MIN): 13/24 134, 1td 0int.
WEEK 15 (T.B): 15/23 206, 0td 2int.

What's his line this Sunday? Over/Under is 2int's!

Miami Herald:

So much garbage is written by Greg Cote I wonder why the herald keeps a flip flop reporter like him on the payroll. He always goes against the Phins and he’s articles are copy paste articles from ESPN what a waste of resources herald get with the program and get a younger reporter that kid Israel is doing a good job, cut the fat Cote probably makes to much anyways bring in the youth get rid of this flip flopping excuse of a journalist.

Ahhh, an article that discusses two things no one cares about... Someone' lost blackberry and Jeff George...... Penmanship at it's finest, indeed!

Seems the Dolphins are the Rodney Dangerfield of football..........they can get any respect.

Ok David, you lost your blackberry today and yesterday you were late for the coaches meetings because you went and got yourself a mac and cheese. If you want to keep Mando's job, you better pick it up, dude. Lol

I think they picked Long last year because the media goes insane and they would have had to pay a number one overall qb a cazillion dollars. Too risky. And then comes the pressure.

Time again for you boys n girls to Man Up!

Join the annual Yahoo NFL Pro Pick'em league.
We still have some spots open for competitive players who are in it for the whole season.

It's a free automated office pool type format, only without the money, just braggin rights...lol

This year I hope to see some new players there also.
No spread for you mentally handicapped folks, Just pick the damn Winners you Losers :)

Here is our Group ID# (55806) and the Password (pickem).
http://football.fantasysports.yahoo.com/pickem/55806

We have fun every year talkin smack and keepin track.
So feel free to forward this invite to your friends also, that is if you even have any.
If not then just forward it to your enemies.

Hurry, you can still get in on all of the sunday and monday games for week 1.
See you chumps and wannabe experts at the bottom of the standings :)

Later,

GetterDone Phins!

David looking forward to your article, keep up the execellent work.

why all the posters are down on our football treasure David eel .he gives us the post information any fan dreams of .

go David and do your work w/ your head held high .
GO JETS

WOW, exciting stuff! This guy didn't get paid for this did he?

He got half egg salad sandwich, bag of bbq chips, and lemonade

i believe the writers pay not get paid , what carlito think's ?

What happened to our awesome new dolphins website that we have been promised for so long?

I don't care what is going on with Armando as long as he doesn't come back.

carlito,

new very good movie...............RED BELT

You must be so proud of yourself, passing along that tactical nugget & assuming that the Trifecta "must" have wanted you to do so.

And the media wonder why twitting & live blogging has been banned, and why the players & coaches generally distrust the media. Shame on you.

VicDamon. it's football man not chess .the stronger wins ,period .who ever eat more pig's meat before the gam wins .

Why David J alway update blog without tell anybody or make us notice in any way?

David J want us to keep it PG, it seem to me like he never read this blog or comments or even know the motto at top of page. "Everything Dolphin, no subject is taboo..."

gopasts,

I will check out Red Belt, thank you for recoment it.

I really like Iron Monkey and Fist of Legend, these are classic movie good for everyone of all languege

I am worried about our safety play.

Wow, y'all know even less about football than I thought if you think that THAT "nugget" is something that the Falcons would pay any mind to. (Hint: They're probably going to go by what the Dolphins do in the game... and that, of course, will vary.)

Cuban your jealousy and envy is eating you alive...PUNK

chanchito cuban menace

For want of a nail, the horse was lost....

Loose lips sink ships..........

A stitch in time, saves nine......

sachito sound like he can be a football writer fo a blog but he has to pay to read his trash

Dolphins Win
Pats win
bills lose
jets lose

And people want to know why are comments go off topic when it comes to a football blog, where's the news we crave for?

The new website is in the mail.

my girl friend was at me today b/c i didn't buy a new pillow to go w/ the new mattress we got 3 weeks ago .any one knows where i can find the best brand 100 cotton under 3 bucks on sale .RICKM sound like he's cheap enough to know .

100 percent cotton.

PS....why the herald didn't call the cuban menace to fill for armando until he comes back .

That is a real good question ALoco C.M Where are you?

Did anyone else see that Matt Ryan called the wildcat a 'fad'? Can we please pay him back?

wow, i have no idea what the last twenty comments meant. are they in english? i didn't bother with proper punct. because it would be lost here.

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