I've been telling you for some time the Dolphins are team without enough speed and consequently that is one reason they don't have a lot of big plays. No revelation there as anyone with eyes can see this is the case.
Well, offensive coordinator Dan Henning agrees with me. (I don't know if that's a good thing or not.) Henning, however, thinks the lack of speed on the Dolphins is pervasive throughout the roster.
"On our football team overall, we're missing dynamics," Henning said today. "We haven't had a dynamic kickoff return or punt return to put the ball even on the plus side of the 50. We haven't had a dynamic interception return to take it back for a touchdown the entire year. And we haven't had but two or three dynamic plays on offense out of about 800 or so.
"So we're missing that. And somewhere along the line we have to find it for this team."
I asked Henning if he believes that lack of dynamic play-making has to do specifically with a lack of speed overall, and particularly on offense.
"There's no question about it," he responded. "The same people that are playing on special teams, play on offense and defense ... We're just not making the big plays. That is speed, that is ability, that is those things that come from dynamic individuals. We do a good job of catching the ball. [Davone] Bess does a good job just like he does on offense of making plays. But they're not 50- or 60-yard plays. He'll dramatically change a play from a 5- or 6-yard gain to 15-yard gain. A couple of weeks ago he got a 40-yard gain but that's what it is. When you have a body of work, whether it's one year or 15 games or whatever it is, usually, you are who you are."
Henning on Thursday gave the gathered media a recount of what Miami's personnel department has done and needs to do.
"I can tell you from an offensive standpoint specifically because that what I deal with," he said. "We won the division in 2008, They were 1-15 and came very close to being 0-16. They won an overtime game. We broke down the team, we tried to deal with the personnel that was there. We let some players go that people before us had a higher opinion of but we didn't have as high an opinion. And we elevated some people we had a higher opinion of and we won the division. We won 11 games. it wasn't easy. It wasn't exactly dynamic. But we had about 8.03 yards per attempt. We had 11.9 or 12 yards per completion and we had over 4 yards per carry with that team.
"After that season we all agreed we had a little bit easier schedule than we were going to have. If we were going to be where we wanted to be, we needed to change some things and get better. We haven't done it. That doesn't mean we haven't tried to do it. But this group is not as efficient and consistent as that group was. Therefore, they're not as effective as that group was. Basically we had the same coaches. We have some players in this group who are more dynamic than we had. But as a team, we're not as efficient, consistent or effective as we were in 2008.
"We need speed and we need it in the areas where if you break something loose, you have a chance to take it to the house regardless of whether we're on our 10 or their 10."
Henning, the offensive coordinator, considers himself well-versed enough on the Dolphins because he has been around the players and coaches and personnel department for three years now.
"I feel like I know some things about this team because I work with it all the time, I'm on top of it with the players and so forth," he said. "I do think there are some things that need to be done. I've told Tony when he's asked me. And I'm sure he's taken in not only my opinion, but many opinions."