Thursdays are among my favorite days with the Dolphins because I get to hear offensive coordinator Dan Henning and defensive coordinator Mike Nolan try to share as little as possible about what really is going on with the team and then I get to hear wide receiver Brandon Marshall be relatively open and engaging and interesting.
Today was no different. During his session with the media, the Miami alpha wide receiver addressed whether he's disappointed that Randy Moss won't be joining the Dolphins, talked about his lack of concern about receptions, his significant concern about his lack of touchdowns, and even his opinion about some teammates:
(On him and Brian Hartline going back and forth about who is faster) – “He’s definitely faster but I like to give him a hard time (laughter). (You know) when we do our gassers or after practice I try to cut him off just messing with him. (laughter)”
(On how has he seen Brian Hartline’s role evolve) – “I think he—not to put any more pressure on him but I think he invites the pressure and embraces it—but I think he plays, he has the biggest role as far as out of all the receivers. (You know) you got a guy like myself who…I sees a lot of coverage, a lot of cover 2 a lot of double teams and now we’re seeing Davone (Bess) starting to get bracketed and double-teamed at times. So, he’s the guy that got to beat one on one. That’s why I’m here that’s why I’ve been successful in the league and he has an opportunity to really do some big things the rest of this season and his career.”
(On the Ravens legendary defense and what he sees in it) – “Legendary, I like that (laughter). The Ravens are legendary. Well Ray Lewis may be (laughter). They have some good football players. When you talk about football players that’s what their defense is made up of. Sometimes you can’t coach some of the things that they do. They have a great feel for the game and they’re able to make a lot of plays from experience off of experience. It’s not going to be a pretty game. We, both football teams are tough physical and I think this is going to be a defining moment on what type of team we’re going to be for the rest of this season."
(On if he has even been in a press conference where Ed Reed’s name doesn’t come up) – “Absolutely, absolutely. But, my rookie year (you know) no one wanted to talk to me about (you know) what I thought (you know) ask those cheesy questions, so (laughter). Now I guess I got a bigger role, but, Ed Reed he’s finally healthy and had two picks last week so it looks like he’s back where he left off."
(On if he believes if Ed Reed is in training camp shape)—“I don’t believe anything Ed (Reed) says (smiling). Ed’s a liar (smiling). We put on film where you see Ed (you know) make a good play (you know) make a little play lay on ground, get up a little slow and then the next play get a pick and then the next series get another pick (you know). Nah, he’s back.”
(On how difficult is it to read what Ed Reed does in coverage)— “He breaks all the rules. He breaks all the rules and I think that’s why he’s so successful is because he has the ability to just read the quarterback. He may be in cover 2 and pick a ball in the flat—he’s just amazing and makes a lot of plays for that ball club.”
(On how disappointed is he that Randy Moss wasn’t able to come to the Dolphins) – “I’m not disappointed at all. I just thought it would’ve been a good opportunity for our segment, our segment room. Now for team, that’s not my decision. That’s not my place, and I don’t even know if that (may) have been a good fit for our team. But I know as far as us as receivers we’re so young, including myself (I mean) I’m the oldest in the room and I’m only on my fifth year. So, just to get some wisdom from a guy like that who has been around a little bit and probably one of the best that’s ever done it and (you know) I just looked at it as an opportunity to learn and help me get better and Brian (Hartline) and Davone Bess and Julius Pruitt (you know) all those guys.”
(On why this is a defining game for this team) – “Because it’s the next game; I’m going to say that every week, I’m going to say that every week but probably in different words. Every week’s a defining game.”
(On why the team has had so much success on the road) – “It’s one of those things where we’ve been inconsistent and unfortunately we’ve been inconsistent in front of our fans at home. We’re a good football team; we have a lot of great football players, our staff is amazing. We just got to be consistent and be effective when we have our opportunity.”
(On the 96 yard drive last week and the offense’s potential) – “Yeah, well I mean we have an explosive group from the running backs to the offensive line. We got Jake Long when we run gassers, up there with the wide receivers. It’s impressive to see the talent that we have. Like I said we just have to be consistent and put it all together and definitely do a better job in the red zone.”
(On running four wide receiver sets against the Ravens, something the Bills had success with) – “To each his own; everybody’s formula for winning is different. Ours is a little different than Buffalo’s. What we do well may not be the same so I think with the game plan that we have going in and that we’re working on this week we should have some success.”
(On whether he wants more receptions) – “More catches? More catches? I’m on track to have one of the best year’s I’ve had. Now I need to get some more touchdowns, but more catches? I’m (a) top five targeted receiver in the league.”
(On whether he wants more touchdown receptions) – “We can talk about touchdowns, but catches? That’s better, no I think there’s some frustration always because you want to see the offense live up to the potential. Hate to use that word but I think Coach Henning and his staff do a great job of getting the playmakers the ball or trying to. It’s tough, it’s tough, it’s tough when we have to line up and beat the guy in front of us. They get paid to defend us and the coaches get paid to beat the coaches on the other side of the field. It’s a battle; I think overall we do a great job of putting guys in position.”
(On how often he would like to be thrown to even while covered) – “Well you got to understand, you have to understand when I’m covered, when it’s one-on-one yeah we’re going to throw it up. I’m looking at the top five, top 10 receivers in the league and even the coaches; we haven’t seen so much coverage rolled to one guy. I think that’s where Davone (Bess) is going to play a big role and Brian Hartline; he’s playing a big role of just making plays. I think they’re doing a great job of doing in week in and week out. If they’re going to continue to take me away with two or three guys then there’s other guys open. I am going to be frustrated; I may show some emotion. At the end of the day I know, what can we do if there’s two, three guys on me?”
(On how his role had changed being the veteran at his position) – “I have to be accountable, each play each day and I think we have a great group. At the end of the day I am the oldest guy and there’s been, had a little success so far. We’re trying to win so whenever you see me talking to anyone it’s probably trying to get everything on the same page.”