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Limited practices, no offseason work is no excuse

First some news: The Dolphins have agreed to contract terms with free agent linebacker Marvin Mitchell and are expected to have him in the fold for practice Monday once he passes his physical, an NFL source said Sunday evening. Mitchell is primarily a reserve with four years experience in New Orleans. He was a seventh-round pick of the Saints in 2007.

On another front, there is no question the early part of this NFL season will provide something of an advantage for teams that not only have kept their head coaches from 2010 employed but also their coordinators.

The point is no offseason camps or OTA days coupled with limited work during training camp (no double-session practices) works against team installing new schemes on offense or defense and really, really works against teams that are installing both a new offense and defense and working under a new head coach.

The Dolphins kept coach Tony Sparano for this season so that is good on the continuity front. They are playing their second season under defensive coordinator Mike Nolan and his scheme so that is good also. However, the offense under new coordinator Brian Daboll is new

And that is a challenge.

The truth is that puts the Dolphins' offense behind division rivals New York, New England and even Buffalo because all three of those are running the same offense this year as they did a year ago.

We all have to understand and accept that. The Miami offense is going to be behind the rest of the division for a while.

Now, this is something you don't have to accept:

The Dolphins are getting as much work this training camp as any other NFL team and certainly no less than any other NFL team. So the excuse that poor play is a product of limited practice time is bogus because other teams, including ones that are playing well, are practicing the same amount.

It's like folks that come out of a game complaining about heat or rain or snow as the reason they did not perform. It's hot for both teams. It's raining or snowing on everybody. The excuse rings hollow.

Also, those excusing Chad Henne for not looking particularly sharp the other night need to stop. I don't want to hear Henne struggled because the offense is new to him. The truth is he has admitted to having the playbook since February.

So 4 of 8 for 77 yards with 1 TD and 2 INTs is not good. And it's especially not good compared to other quarterbacks who entered Week 1 of the preseason in similar tough situations.

Kevin Kolb, traded to Arizona from Philadelphia, was among those players who could not practice with his new teammates until the new collective bargaining agreement was reached. So he missed the first week of practice. He completed 4 of 7 passes for 68 yards without a TD or INT.

Cleveland quarterback Colt McCoy, working under a new head coach, in a new offensive system, working against Green Bay's starting defense, working with a lineup that doesn't necessarily look star-studded, completed 9 of 10 passes for 135 yards with 1 TD and 0 INTs.

Jacksonville's Blaine Gabbert completed 9 of 16 passes for 85 yards with neither a TD nor an INT. He's a rookie. He got his playbook three weeks ago. He was facing New England's first-team defense. He didn't look great but neither did turn the ball over.

I'm not saying Gabbert and McCoy are better than Henne or anyone else. I am saying that they are facing similar difficulties, and in some cases, a more difficult situation than Henne. And they're performing.

So I don't want to hear about a limited number of practices being the reason one guy or one unit is struggling. Everyone else in the NFL has similar issues.

Deal with it. Overcome.

[Blog note: The Dolphins practice at 11 a.m. Monday. I'll be here for a live practice blog. Join me then.]


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Cris, expecting craig to ever admit an error is unfathomable. He's all knowing.

It defeats his purpose of coming here & lecturing us if he is ever wrong.

Sam Knows,

I noticed your 11:13 post didn't address your asinine take on the Henne/Fasano play. Admitting defeat already after just one rebuttal from me, SK? Wow! LMAO!!

"Another fact is, based on Fasano's track record, he probably still would have bobbled it."

Posted by: Joe Schmoe

No argument from me on that, Joe.

As good as the Sun Comes up, here's CraigM again! (Golf Clap)

You critiquing my writing, Craigala? At least I know how to use paragraphs!

Trying to read your posts is like reading a child's scribble!

No, your just a whiny crying little beatch and a waste of time. Stop believing your important, cause you not. Have a nice day wasting everyone's time.

Craig, btw, it's not: "Joe, your a waste of sperm."

It's: Joe, you're a waste of sperm.


For those apologists/pragmatists that believe that us "bleating" fans are on some ledge because of one pre-season game... clearly you haven't been a Dolphin fan long enough. You haven't lived through the Feidler years. Us whiners are in the position we are because of MANY YEARS of lame-duck QBs, coaches, excuses, and continual clock-work promises that time/patience/one more lineman (insert FO speak here) will somehow manufacture the miraculous turn-around that exists in Hollywood, or delusional fan dreams. Sorry, but NO. Successful seasons stem from good drafting, good off-season FA's and trades, good coaching, and a damned good QB. If Tavaris Jackson or Alex Smith lead their teams to the playoffs, I'll formally apologize for being wrong, otherwise... Stop complaining about the fans not being supportive and open your eyes to the neck-high doo-doo we've been made to wade through. I DO firmly believe the Phins will come around eventually, but it ain't this year with these QBs and staff. I remain a fan, but I'm not blind or ignorant either. You can be both realistic and a fan. Best of luck to the Phins this year - they'll need it.

Sam Knows,

That's two straight posts devoid of football facts (actually, three if I count your initial post essentially indicating (:belly laugh:) it was ALL Fasano's fault).

Unbunch your panties and MOVE ON! ;)

JS, is LA Louisianna of LA in CA?

Just wondering, I have a lot of people I work with in New Orleans, and all of them were bummed to lose Reggie.

If your from Louisianna, what were your thoughts on that?


I have to agree with you, and add that simply Henne is a retard... The guy just simply sucks there is no way Miami finishes the season with him as the starter I garantie if the couching staff want to keep their jobs this guy is benched by week 3 after an 0-3 start behind Benny sorry Henne.

Dolphins fan from Panama

Mando, you really screwed the pooch on this article. Just terrible.

JS in LA, well said. Having realistic expectations doesn't change the fact that deep down, we're all fans.

Some of us just widely recongize what's happened in the recent past & continues to happen in the present. Unless you're blind, you have to acknowedge it. If you don't, you're not objective.

You can be a fan without blindly accepting everything this team does, right or wrong.

Poizen, btw, no comments on my post about Henne & the preseason game?

Surely as a fan 1st & a staunch Henne supporter 2nd, I'm sure you have some opinion on it, no?

Anything you disagree with in my statement? I'm genuinely curious.

Thanks, Joe.
Poizen, La-la land. BTW, I'm not a Reggie fan, but he does add the next to most important thing we lacked from last season: a weapon that will make people respect the check-down, since we seem to resort to that a lot. Sproles will probably do just as well for N.O. When LBs and safeties respect the check-down, opens the middle deeper for bigger plays (plus of course the occasional broken tackle big run from the flat).
BTW, I'm watching at all the rookie QBs we passed up, we'll see if we made the blunder that I claimed we did by not drafting one... gotta say so far feeling justified. But long season to go for ultimate proof.

Joe, in all honesty I have strayed from engaging with you in conversation as suttle insults and stuff happens, so I have just let things roll and no commented on your post. That oges for seminole Sam also for that matter.

I have no problem with the difference in opinion and discussing, but the self-professed my opinion is right and if you disagree your on meds or a different planet or something does not appeal to me.

Now that I got that out of the way, I will try one last time and see where it goes.

I saw your post, you mentioned you saw Henne with better command, I agree with that. I was pleasantly suprised with how he barked at Murtha (saw that), and seemed more like a person on the sidelines talking with tother teammmates. (That I heard, did not see)

I do feel that drop is all Fasano, Hennput the ball in a nice spot, if he led Fasano, Fasano would be dead right now. Watched that one a few times, So I pin taht one on Fasano.

I do however find the 2nd int a epic disaster of a mistake. I earlier in this post kind of threw out all my views on thes things in more detail.

But beyond the Fasano thing, we are close to being on the same page I think.

Or as close as possible...

off to lunch

JS, I truly believe for once a good decision on drafting a QB. I think there are 5 guys coming out this year even better than any taken in this draft. so either way, if we do well this year or not. We need to draft one of them. I am not completly sold on Henne, but do like what I see most of the time. but I do not want to hang my hat on one good season if he has it. so I think next year is the draft a QB draft. JMO.

Was it Henne's fault that his receivers dropped balls, that the offense has no running game, that the o-line did not block anybody.

Does not matter who the QB is on this team until we can do these simple things.

GOD = Poizen

Poizen, good. A little banter & suttle insults back & forth is typical on this board. Most of mine towards you are laced with sarcasm anyway since our line of thinking is NOT as far off as you may think. Don't let it deter you from enaging in convo.

Unless you're like CraigM where you are alwasy going to be right & I am alwasy going to be wrong & expect apologies from me. Then, forget it! lol

Telling it like it is!!

Poizen, I'm with you on the QB draft thing assuming we can work miracles (or suck bad enough) to draft Barkley. Luck is out of reach. After Barkley, the field is very similar to last draft's crop. Just looking for hope rather than the usual song-and-dance about "..this year QB-X will play better for us." The good news for you is we may just BE bad enough to get into the top draft picks. I'm torn between trying to be competitive and stay mediocre, or falling so far that we destroy the status-quo and get new coaches, QBs, FO personnel etc. I'm not a hater of Sparano or Ireland but they're not pulling themselves out of the fire with their production so far. I'd say, realistically, this is their make-or-break year. Phins are starting to make national news about their troubles... that spells change. We'll see I guess.


I will never post as anyone other than Poizen, just FYI... check URL's with Mando, he will prove that.

And no, never think I am always right. But I never will debate about something I know I am wrong on. :)

Next years draft will be good oportunity for us, if we are smart that is... Ireland??? Ut-oh. :)

Armando, another award winning article!! THERE IS 70 PLAYERS IN THE TEAM WHY KEEP ON DESTROYING HENNE....!! His stats look exactly like all the other QB's you mentioned..... the first INT is on Fasano, even if the ball was slightly behind... a good TE would have caught that ball!!.... SO WHY THE BASHING? WHEN IS IT GOING TO STOP? WHY DO YOU LIKE TO NURTURE MORE HATE IN THIS TOWN?? Holly S$%t

I think Miami have some of the dumbest football fans ever. These aren't real games its a lock out year. did henne make some dumb calls yes , does it count now nope. That line who was out there wont be starting for us other than carey, no beast and no bush , no game plans. Please ppl stop being emotional and watch the tape. Mando i think we all get it you hate henne. he could have a 3 tds game no picks and and you would harp on that incomplete pass. Ppl these arent real game if he come out and stick it up on sept 12 then we can talk stop being idiots I mean your worst than Jets fans at least they support there overrated QB and over Hyped D .

WTF...how about we see how this season goes before we start in on the draft next year? 3rd year STARTING is USUALLY where a QB shows his true worth. Henne has 3 years on the team and 1-1/2 years worth of starts. If he plays well and Dolphins compete for playoffs, you still want a QB drafted with first pick???

For the love of God will you people relax!!!!It was the first quarter of a PRESEASON game. Armando I get you have a job to do but to over analyze a quarter of a quarter of football with three of their biggest offensive stars not even playing is just absurd. If these "problems" persist into the second or third week of the season than we have an issue. But until then lay off a little it gets so tiresome to hear nothing but negative drivel spewing out of everyone's mouth when there hasn't even been a second of meaningful football played yet. Living in upstate NY at least the Bills fans are certain that this is their year until the season starts. I'm not saying everything is rainbows and lollipops but at least give them a week into the season before we write the whole season off.

Over analysis of Henne...did anyone else notice that the o line was missing several important players, marshall and bush didn't play...seriously mando we already know, I repeat we already know you don't like Henne but your blog is becoming as vanilla as Henne,find something else to talk about loser! It's obvious that we're stuck with one more year. If the Phins flounder, then maybe we can trade up for a QB named Luck but until then find something else to talk about...pretty please with a cherry on top!


You're a professional sports writer and you saw the game, right? You didn't see that the first interception was a completion to Fasano, who batted it up in the air, creating a terrible mood? By the 3rd series, you saw Henne throw a beautiful 44 yard TD pass. Marino never through such a spiral. So actually Henne was at least 5 of 8 for 90 yards and who knows what else he'd have done without Fasano messing it up. Yeah, he's gotta overcome that, but that set a terrible tone that messed up everything else on the next drive too.

poiezen and craig m are smart ones here.

seriously armando I don't usually hate on you, but it is flat out professional negligence for you to simply state that Henne had 2 INTs without mentioning that one was Fasano's fault.

We Had some great plays on special teams and our starting defense anciosa great.Estoy Looked to see such a good game where he goes all out. Coach realemnte nostro everything bale equipment. i love.

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