Today was Day One of the Todd Bowles era.
Why do I have this strange feeling of deja vu? Oh, yeah, Jim Bates!
Anyway, Bowles learned that he was taking over the team from Tony Sparano. Bowles said Sparano called him in and said he'd been fired and that Bowles was taking over on an interim basis. That's how Bowles found out.
Seems odd, no?
You'd think Stephen Ross might have broken the news to Bowles. Or general manager Jeff Ireland.
Anyway, for a a couple of hours Bowles says he felt a bit overwhelmed until he got his head around the notion that every great coach in NFL history had a first meeting, a first week of preparation, a first game. "Once I settled that, it all kind of slowed down for me," Bowles said.
And once it slowed down, it was tiime to hit the ground running. In his first meeting in front of the entire team Bowles told the players to give Sparano and call or text and encourage the former coach. He told players "everyone is being evaluated."
How true. Bowles is being evaluated by everyone in the NFL, not just the Dolphins. "I'm not trying to be Don Shula," Bowles said. "I'm trying to win football games."
And the players better get comfortable with the idea that a new sherrif is coming to town next season so they better ride straight the final three games this year if they plan to be around.
The Dolphins travel to Buffalo and it is quite possible J.P. Losman will be starting against his old team because Matt Moore missed practice with a head/neck injury. Bowles said Moore does not have a concussion but added that more tests are pending.
Jake Long (back) and Koa Misi (shoulder) also missed practice today. John Jerry worked in at starting left tackle in Long's absence. What of Nate Garner, you ask? He played for Long last week and yielded three sacks. Enough said.
Garner is a fine swing player. He's a natural guard whom the Dolphins can force in there at right tackle in a pinch. But he's not a left tackle. Just isn't. I'm not certain Jerry is a left tackle, either. But not too many of those are on the market right now.
I've advocated the Dolphins move Vernon Carey back to left tackle but Carey is still hobbled by an ankle injury, which kept him limited in practice. So there goes that idea. Yeremiah Bell (foot) and Anthony Fasano (ribs) were also limited in today's practice.
Losman said he and Pat Devlin shared first-team snaps today.
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