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The words from Tony Sparano's mouth

The Dolphins are back working on Sunday and for the first time since studying his team's loss to Atlanta, coach  Tony Sparano spoke with the media this afternoon.

This is everything he said:

(On if anything stands out to him from the game after looking at film positively) - "There were some things positively. There was some very good-during the course of this game-I thought some very good individual performances. So, there was some guys that played on the upside of 40-45 plays that I thought played really well in this game, I'm not going to single them out. But, I did think they played really well. I think some of these guys either hadn't played as consistent prior to that and made improvements in that ball game or some of them maybe even didn't play so good against them in the past, okay. The last time we played them. But, I thought it was good to see. There were some guys that were really did good things that way. Some guys even on special teams that I thought as we tried to settle that group down a little bit that played like we thought they might play in this game. So, those were pretty much from my end, those were some of the positive things. Initially I thought on the defensive side of the ball that the interior part of our group, I thought Atlanta kind of maybe on the surface got after a little bit, but it really wasn't that. So when I watched the film I thought that was positive-like we were knocking them back pretty good. The ball spilled out on the perimeter a couple times and when the ball spilled out on the perimeter they made some yards and that's a concern. Can't happen, but, the interior-the integrity of what was going on in there I thought was fine. And I thought even at times with the amount of protection that we did in that game the offensive line I thought protected fairly well. Not great, but fairly well."

(On if a change has been made with Alama-Francis playing with the first team in practice) -"We're looking at him there right now. Not necessarily a change. And it might even just include that Ike was in that group and we're maybe looking at Koa (Misi) as well. So, not really a change, but, he was in first group today."

(On if there is any concern with Koa Misi) - "No, I would say that it's about trying to line your - in some situations-maybe with the emphasis of the day today trying to line your ducks up in the right order a little bit."

(On Joey Haynos' injury and how much of a setback it is)
- "As far as the degree of the setback, not positive yet. But, I think it's going to be a little while. Not sure."

(On Vontae Davis playing well) - "Well, Vontae played well. I said it after the game I thought like he played well and I thought after watching film that he played well. The thing Vontae has done in three games right now that has been consistent is he's tackled, he's tackled well. What he hadn't done consistently but well, was the man coverage part of things and in this game did that well. So, that's improvement. He made improvement out here in practice during the week, he took it to the game. That's really what you want to see in some of those things. I don't want to get on and on here but it's like I said before, it was important before a game but more important to see some of those things come out of it where guys got better during the week and got better in the games."

(On what most concerned him after watching film) - "Efficiency."

(On how so and if he could elaborate on the previous question)- "I have this thing that I believe in called hidden yardage that happens in the game. I think it's a way that you win and lose, okay. My team is educated on how you win and lose in this league. There educated on how many close games we've been in over the last couple of years and how many that we've won. In this game we committed 19 minus plays. Now that's not just offense. That has to do with penalties, that has to do with minus runs, that has to do with sacks, that has to do with any of those things. Now you have a chance to get some back on the other side of the ball by forcing them to commit some of those. We didn't do that-they only committed six. So, we forced defensively six minus plays and we had either offensively or defensively we had some defensive penalties we had a special teams penalty-19 of them that totaled about137 yards. They had 27 yards worth of minus plays. In my book, that's about 110 yards and that's about 8 or 9 points that we gave up during the game. Plus we threw a red zone interception which goes against all the rules. So, from an efficiency standpoint, we eliminate some of the minus plays during the course of the game and take care of the ball in the red zone-we won a turnover battle and lost the game. That doesn't happen too many times in this league, okay. So, that's what I mean when I say efficient. We can get a lot better at that.

(On if Friday's game help settle the center position at all) -"Yeah, in my mind a little bit, so."

(On if he's going to announce the starter) - "No."

(On if it's safe to assume that in Thursday's game the starters will start) -"No, I wouldn't assume that."

(On creating turnovers in contrast with the lack of efficiency)
- "Well the efficiency part of things is just-you put 11 guys out there on a play okay and one guy-(you know) we talked a little bit about it in here today after practice. But it could be one guy that does the most minor thing-but that minor thing can cause a minus play. And on defense sometimes you can cover it up. Eventually it'll get back and bit ya, but you can cover it up a little bit by effort. Sometimes effort covers up a bad play over there. On offense you'll get exposed fast that you won't be able to cover it up. And I think that that's the part that we just need to clean up. (I'm sure-I can't say every team, but there's a lot of teams in the league right now I'm sure they're going through the same thing-I really don't care about that, really (only) worried my own group-but that's where we have to get better at. So, we need to improve in that area."

(On having any concern that Channing Crowder won't be ready for the season opener)
- "Ah, I don't know right now."

(On if he's preparing for that possibility) - "Not at this particular second, no."

 

(On Micah Johnson and his development)
- "You know what, Micah's done a pretty good job. I've been pleased with what he's done; he's made some tackles out there. There's areas for his improvement, you know we got to get him downhill a little bit more. He's a little bit of a skater right now, but he is making some plays. This week he played 17 plays; he played like 39 plays in the game and 17 on, on special teams. So he was in the high 50's at the end of the thing, and he did some good things on special teams. That was encouraging."

(On how David Martin looks after being back for a while now)
- "He played better this week, probably, and I thought played pretty good against Jacksonville, but that was really a limited deal. I think he played about a dozen plays against Jacksonville and then this week a little bit more, so played better this week. He's starting, starting to make some progress there. I think he's kind of getting his legs and those kind of things back."

(On if he looks as he did back in 2008)
- "Well I think, I think he's getting there Andy (Kent). I just feel like right now, he's missed some time, a great portion of time from a physical standpoint, and that's probably the area that David has to catch up in the most. When I say that I mean the physical conditioning, the strength, all those things, but other than that his skills, catching the ball, doing the things that he does, he'll probably be able to do that when he's 65 years old."

(On David Martin's chemistry with Anthony Fasano) - "Very good, I like it a lot. You know one thing with Anthony is, I've been in situations with Anthony where having football heads in the room with him, okay if you will, guys that enjoy talking football and like talking about, ‘hey did you see this? What did they do on this one? How did they do this?' That kind of thing stimulates Anthony a little bit and gets him going as far as his approach to maybe some of these things. So the two of those guys that relationship and I know they're good friends off the field here, but I think it helps both of them in that situation. Where Anthony has had to take kind of a different role at times with let's say John Nalbone. He's had to be the teacher, and in this situation these guys are kind of equal and they're sharing information that's pretty valuable, I think."

(On John Nalbone's development)
- "Well he's played a lot of plays. Nobody took more plays than John in the spring, and right now I would argue that John doesn't have the most plays out of the tight end position right now. It might be close after this week, but he's got a lot of plays as we speak. I think that part of the development is important. I think when we get into working against other teams out here, like getting ready for Dallas this week, well we won't spend a lot of time on Dallas, but maybe getting ready like we did last week against Atlanta. I think those plays are valuable you know when you got a guy like (Tony) Gonzalez that you're getting ready for and you're drawing a card up, that's a good card for Nalbone to get a rep at."

(On the importance of the upcoming game against Dallas)
- "Well let's see, I should answer this this way. That fourth game is very important, okay, it's very important, and it is from my end because we go into every one of these wanting to win them. So we'll want to win this game. It's important for some players, make no mistake about that, it really is. I think it's important for some players on this team. I have, I have a large percentage in my head that I think is kind of all set, but I got a couple guys right now that I think I really need to play, and this is a good game to do that because last week maybe you couldn't do that as much because you wanted to get 48 plays out of, out of the starters. I mean you didn't want your defense to play 48 of them, but you wanted to get that portion. I think this week you have an opportunity, and then there's other issues too. You know Benny Sapp for example. I want Benny Sapp to play. I hope, we'll put him out there for a while and let him run around. I think that's going to be important for us too; that's two different issues."

(On Will Allen and if he will be ready for the season opener at Buffalo) - "I have no real update on him right now other than that he's doing a nice job in his rehab at this particular time."

(On the traits a nickel corner must have) - "I think, short memory, I really believe that. One of the things that people don't give those players enough credit for is the amount of space they have to cover. It's easy to look out there and say aw man, he should have had that guy, but the amount of space. When you're playing corner, the boundary is your friend a little bit, but when you're in the middle of the field or they're motioning and you do those kind of things, this is a problem. There's a whole lot of space out there and I think that that's probably one of the biggest traits is being able to have the quickness to defend and maybe the intelligence maybe to defend that kind of space. Then I think you got to be physical because if you're a guy that can get your hands on him within the legal area, I think that helps you gain that space back tremendously. So you got to have no fear, and a little bit with Benny, that's what I've seen on film. He's a guy that's not afraid to slug it out a little bit."

(On how tough a decision it is to set the final roster with players being injured who may not be able to play right away)
- "It's difficult, it's a difficult decision just in that you're taking a look and you're saying okay well I'm holding a spot and if you don't really know timetables or any of those things, I think you got to evaluate maybe the amount of players you have for those spots, any of that type of stuff. It becomes difficult; you got to look at a lot of different things there."

(On if there is a set date where a player won't make the roster if he can't play by that date) - "Yeah I would say that there's a cutoff, yes. I wouldn't necessarily call it that, but I would say there is a cutoff."

(On Charlie Anderson working as an inside linebacker again in practice) - "Well here's what it is Omar (Kelly), it's just that I would say to you that the value of maybe being able to bring a guy like Charlie to the game that can play nickel pass rush snaps with his hand in the ground, possibly play up and cover people and sub, play up in the regular defense, or go and play Will linebacker. That's a valuable piece if you can do it, and Charlie's a very smart guy. We've done this with him before; this isn't the first time. We did it last year, you know (when) Channing was hurt, last year, and we kind of Akin (Ayodele) was a little bit hurt, so we, we got Charlie always ready but never had to put him in the game. We thought, we've seen this many reps of Charlie Anderson right now as an outside linebacker and a nickel rusher, so let's take a look at him here for a little while this other way and see if this can help us."

(On Sean Smith and if he is concerned with his focus or if this is just part of dealing with a young player)
- "No concern, really, no concern with focus at all. I mean the one thing I've noticed with Sean is that he has been pretty focused out here; he's getting better at what it is that he's doing. My approach is just my normal approach with him. We had, we had a small issue this weekend, and it was small but I needed to, I needed to do what I did, and Sean needed to go in the game and play too. So that's what we did, and it's really over."

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