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Daniel Thomas is so far simply disappointing

On Monday I was standing on the sideline watching the Dolphins practice. On what is just a routine run play into the A-gap, Daniel Thomas took the handoff and this happened when there was no apparent hole:

The Dolphins running back took the handoff and turned his back to the line of scrimmage and backpedalled into the pile of offensive and defensive linemen facing the wrong direction.

I turned to Dolphins officials and said that play tells me all I need to know about Thomas as a running back. His instincts are wrong. Rather than lowering his head and pads and bullying his way into the line to create a hole or, at the very least, bouncing outside to salvage the play, he basically gave up on the play and protected himself.

Not what I would expect from the kid who is 6-1 and 228 pounds.

Not what I would expect from a second-round pick.

Not what I would expect from the player who is supposed to inherit the Miami running back spot after this year because Reggie Bush is in the final year of his contract.

Not what I would expect from an NFL running back.

That moment, in all its disappointment, came back to me when I watched Hard Knocks Tuesday. In the opening minutes of the show, amid all the players that are not getting the job done or getting cut or traded, we see Thomas called into coach Joe Philbin's office.

It wasn't so the coach could give the player a standing ovation. Seems Thomas was late to the team plane that carried the Dolphins to the Carolina game two weeks ago. And he apparently did not meet dress code requirements.

And then last week he was late to a weight lifting session.

"Last week you were late to the plane and you weren't in the proper dress code," Philbin tells Thomas. "Now, I come to find out you were 15 minutes late today. From where I sit I get concerned about that stuff. Obviously, you're going to get fined, but that's not the point. The point is I don't want to be fining anybody. I want guys that do what they're supposed to do and be where they're supposed to be and right now, two times in four days, that's not a good thing."

There's more:

"And I'm just telling you, this can't happen, that kind of stuff can't happen," Philbin adds. "I'm getting a little queasy about you. You got to take responsibility for your own career, what you're doing and when you're doing it. I don't want to come talk to you again. I want to see you out there and next time I want to talk to you on a positive thing, not this kind of stuff."

So what does all this mean?

Look, the Dolphins are fishing for bodies or draft picks or anything that can possibly help them rise from the mire that currently threatens to sink them to the bottom of the AFC East standings once the season begins.

The Detroit Lions, meanwhile, are searching for running backs. And so it's only logical that the Lions might be looking at Miami's supposedly well-stocked running back stable and think maybe Bush might be available for a receiver or draft pick.

And if I'm the Dolphins, I would love to be able to consider the option. Except that the heir to the job can't be on time and isn't exactly producing on the field and isn't exactly following in the tradition of Larry Csonka, either.

So what can the Dolphins do but hold on to Bush, right?

Well, you might say, they can offer Thomas. That's a fine idea except Thomas hasn't done anything of high regard in this league and his tardiness was now on national TV. Also, the head coach said on national TV that he's starting to feel "queasy" about the guy. Yeah, that's going to bring a bigtime dividend in trade from Detroit  ... or anybody.

It's just disappointing. That's all I can say. Disappointing.


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We're going to hear from all of the fans screaming draft bust starting.....now

Had high hopes for Thomas, but I hate to say he reminds me an awful lot like Sammy Smith. In attitude and his running style.

Extremely disappointing from a guy who is supposed to provide a solid power run game. ireleand sure knows how to use those 2nd round picks

I will be the first one. Daniel Thomas was another horrible pick by Jeff Ireland. Add Egnew from this year too.

Ireland sucks. He can't pick talent in the draft.

Is it just me or was the last episode of HARDKNOCKS to a certain extent a ploy to help heal the conventional opinion of the Dolphins organization, Ireland and Co.?? Since day one with this group it has been the Parcillian dogmatic way of approaching both the media and fan base as to info. regarding the in's and out's of the way the team is run. Parcells had a gag order on employees that Ireland has kept tenfold and now we see a piece on the human side of the man, seemed fishy to me?

I will admit that my opinions on the F.O. has been harsh but at least it's been steady and never wavered. In following HARDKNOCKS and watching NFL Net on down to ESPN and listening to the opinions voiced on those Networks I find it hilarious how every episode has subtly found ways of answering and addressing these observations in-directly.

It's also amusing how nobody ever admits the utter failure the Parcells tenure was or for that matter how the drafts he and Ireland oversaw have turned out for this team. We have 2 count them 2! Players actively contributing at a high level since the 08 draft that's 2 quality starters in 5 drafts (J.Long, M.Pouncy)

Three other who have been mediocre in S.Smith, C.Clemmons and Misi and a group who supposedly have all this potential yet to be shown in Odrick, Clay and R.Jones. Do the math and it's roughly a drafts worth in 5 or about 20% hit rate and that's being kind considering that outside the OL mentioned the rest would probably be playing S.T.'s elsewhere if not out right bench warmers, so is it time yet to constructively critique Ireland and Co. or just trade everybody left who can play with another rebuilding go around???????????

Did you see him run last year when healthy and this past pre season game ? The guy can run, so what that he was late or you think you saw something in a practice. In games when healthy he produced and last week he ran hard and jumped over a player for more yards !

I was late many times.

How does anybody get worked up over bs reality tv soap opera HK?

It's meaningless fodder for bored people.

Running backs either have it or they don't. They don't suddenly wake up three years after they're drafted and become great.

Plowing into the line backwards? Bwaaahahahahah!

Did any player get more attention that Les Brown?

F'n weird.

This is gonna be a long decade.

You would think that just by happenstance and reverse luck that Ireland would eventually hit on a 2nd round pick but no.. the guy is anti-clutch.

He's the guy who would be 0 for 100 on the basketball team taking the last shot. By the 88th time you just cringe when he "pulls the trigger" and know that it's another airball.

Seems like a decent person but the only thing he's good at is making thousands of people scratch their head.

Thomas is yet another high draft bust whose days here are numbered. The writing is on the wall. Same with Ireland, if Mr. Ross had any sense.

Vontae gets fired and before he can even respond he wants to call his grandmother?

Sorry, no hope. Good move getting a #2 for him.


You're reading an awful lot into a run in practice. Frankly, a RBI shouldn't be beating himself up in practice on every carry. Mark Clayton was once dubbed by Shula an awful practice player but he played pretty well on game day.

Good move trading our only decent corner for another Ireland bust.

We could probably trade Thomas for a fourth round pick.

I couldn't agree with you Sanzele...Vontae Davis is clueless.




I know you're just loving all of this! Gives you plenty of stuff to moan and gripe about...plenty to keep those blogs and posts coming! Hope they're not overloading you too much. Don't look at it as being over-worked...look at it as job security!

Come on Mando!! This is a BS article. He's a kid and tardiness has nothing to do with being a super star. He's the backup RB!! What did you expect?!

Thomas is consistently stopped by the first tackler. Bad sign for any RB, let alone a power RB. If we can trade him for decent picks, do it. If not, see if he is coachable. Bottom line is Philbin knows his system, keep the keepers with the ability and attitude to play in his system and trade or cut the rest - then coach the hell out of the keepers and use the picks to fill the holes evident by the end of the season.

cant say what he did in practice but nearly every time the guy gets the ball during a game, he runs hard and gets positive yardage......sometimes in pretty good chunks--seems like the kid needs to grow up a little (recurring theme unfortunately) but what I see in games is promising.

Wow, late to the team plane, 15 minutes late for weight lifting, and 1 carry out of 100 carries he may have had in camp so far. Now he's simply disappointing.

Aramndo, did you forget your meds today or what? Or is it just that time of the month for you?

The plane didnt have to be grounded to wait for Thomas to show up. He missed the first 15 minutes of weightlifting. Hmm... sounds like he may have missed waiting in line for his turn to lift next.

Armando, Im sure he's had some good plays in practice. But, you take 1 bad play, and add it to what you heard on Hard Knocks, and translate it into Thomas is a major disappointment.

Sure it's important to be punctual throughout life. But you just took the act of turning a mole hile into a mountain to the newest of heights. Whats the difference between saying simply or major disappointing. The flimsy evidence you presented stated "mildly disappointing" at best.

Geesh, you think your readers are stupid. At least all of us arent. There are a few exceptions here.

Daniel Thomas = 3 more Ireland busts.

Yo Jeffy,

How's Eggnew doin?

When Ireland traded 3 picks for D Thomas the draft room broke out in loud laughter.

The Tuna and Co. has done a fine job of screwing this organization. Can't believe Ireland is still around.

I hope the pre season and the hard knocks ending soon. For good to some idiots fans

Fin4 @ 11:43,

I don't care if my Fan Club gives me frief over saying so, but great post. It's stuff like this that your posts such a good read.

(one critique, and it's negligible: I would have switched Jones and Clemons names around in regard to what group they fit).

If you got any film, study Clemons. His play has shaken my confidence in him lately.

Daniel Thomas will have a good year. He ran very well last year until he was injured. He also ran well last game. So he had one bad run in practice and you trash the guy?

Wow, Really.

Just mention my name, U don't have to imitate me.

The Thomas thing? Really Dashi is going to take Running Back advice from any of these clown reporters. D.Thomas gained over 1200yds and 1580yds in college before coming out. He didn't break many 50+ yd runs either. Philbin is just trying to coach up his talent. D.Thomas had the 3rd most Rushing Yds as a Rookie. D.Thomas had more Rushing Yds than 1st rd pck M.Ingram!! Who some wanted instead of Pouncey last Year.


On To a Better PArt?!

Anyone notice it's a Team Decision! Ireland and Philbin work in Coalition with each other.

Could Explain alot of the Sporano Decisions. Dashi Isn't given Ireland a Pass. But Sporano had some Say in Decisions.

- I turned to Dolphins officials and said that play tells me all I need to know about Thomas as a running back -

Look at you, trying to make it about yourself again. Mando, you are simply the WORST. You back into piles of men too, and it's disgusting.

The guy sure looked good to me. And to everybody else except to Armando.

But Wyle E. Coyote, "Super Genius" traded up to get him.

He's bound to be a first ballot Hall of Famer..............just like all of his other picks.

Don't pay too much attention to Armando, YG and odin. He has always liked to stir the pot to get more hits for the Blog and at the same time vent his anger. Armando smart.

Armando, kudos for telling it like it is, which only a great journalist can. Your insight hits the nail on the head regarding Thomas.

Ireland = Philbin's Bottom B!tch

Hire Sherman for GM next year.

Dashi will be Mucho-More Satisfied With the OC as GM, than the Ballboy.

Hey as long as He doesn't start posting Video Blog's of Himself.

Or Dresses Up in A Suit & Tie to Write an Article like Omar Jelly.

Another Great Dolphin ANALyst

What you guys think all this getting rid of high $ veterans in favour of younger players will do to Teams? Could lower echelon Teams such as ourselves benefit from that? Or is it a trap?

This is how we should've done it 5 years ago.

The more I see of Philbin, the more I like.

If you weren't aware of it, Philbin is the type of guy you either Like Alot or Hate. I don't think there's alot of middle ground with him and his relationships.

It's way to early to try and draw any conclusions on Philbin. But a couple of things for sure, he has a distinct idea/plan on the way he thinks a team should operate. The other, he's very consistant in his approach.

Love it or hate it, he's building a Joe Philbin Football Team in Miami!

Given Time, most People learn, Dashi. Where is Sushi?

Hopefully, Granny Ross will wake up from his coma.

Hey Ross, your GM has you in the second worst salary cap situation in the NFL, yet nearly 1/5 of your roster may be coming from the scrap heap.

You must be able to realize how pathetic that is, right?

Keep Ireland much longer and you and that sack of crap will be the only two in your stadium............well, you two and your b-list celebrities.

The only common denominator of the Dolphins failure is Ireland.

I don't know about Traps.

But it's a Dangerously Fine Line to try and Walk.

(Trying Out my Dashi-Like third person again)

Odin is ALWAYS mindful when diverting Sail power to the Oars!

(Immitation is the Highest form of Flattery)

Instead of trying to be 11-5 right away. The Fins would've benefited from a couple of years drafting in the Top 10. Build the Team with Rookies for 2-3 years like Tampa did. Or Carolina is Doing. Then when u have a Good Nucleus, U go and get 1 or 2 Quality Fa's.

Draft and Build Ur leaders. Don't hire them as FA's.

The Problem with last Rebuild was The Fins were Using the Parcells Formula. Know they are using the Philbin Formula.

Similar to the JJ Formula. JJ is one to talk he traded Herschel Walker Off Bat!!

But the Fins will build thru the Draft this Time.

You know I haven't watched one episode of HK. Don't need to.

The team is a cespool of arena leaguers. They waved the white flag months ago. They wont say it yet, but they know they cant compete.

However you want to turn it, this is a year to clean the garbage. I believe it happens to all Coaches that come into an Organization with, like odin said, a clear idea of what kind of Team they want to build. I know it happened to Shula and the cleaning was extensive. I don't remember any complaints about it.

Dashi ate Sushi for Lunch!

Agreed Odin ;)

Most like Or Hate Philbin. No in between

Would like to see Half-a-Season to judge first.

But Coach is what most people here wanted.

Philbin is a Straight Shooter

Philbin is Talkative, slightly funny

Philbin is Knowledgeable

Philbin is a Hard Worker

Philbin is not any other coach that has been down here in the last 10+ years.

He's No Young Don Shula but Philbin has coached over 10,000 days in the NFL by his own Accord. Yes, Zero as a HC.

Give the man a Break til week 8, before we pass judgement on him.


When Shula became hc, there wasnt and internet, the Herald may have had only 25,000 subscribers, no twitter, no cable tv, and no Armando.

There was no way anyone could complain. Even if they did Joe Robbie was too drunk to listen.

A MLB #1 pick cow by was cut by Shula in the first week of training Camp. The staring QB, another sukky #1 pick was traded in the 3rd week. And so on.

Was anyone else on the show? Other than Jackie and Lauren, sorry, missed it, not important! Really, think about it, NOT IMPORTANT!!!!!

can we get Ricky back?

Agree with Dashi. Too bad about Sushi.(time to clean my keyboard)

Blinders, Ricky who?

Give the kid a break! He's only is his 2nd year. He's got talent. I like the fact that Philbin is running a tight ship. If you don't manage the players, the players will manage YOU! I know another coach who was also known for his no-nonsense dicipline approach; his name was Shula. He won a few football games as I recall! Rules are rules, they apply to everyone. It's not a sin to be a little early for a meeting or appointment either!

These players have the chance of a life-time. It's up to Philbin and his coaching staff to get the best out of each player so they can each reach their potenial. Dicipline is part of the process, just like the military. Any of you veterans out there I am sure can relate to this.

Denver Fins Fan


This team is AGGRESIVELY collecting garbage, not cleaning out.

Sorry, blindref, spellcheck has a mind all its own.

I mean the garbage is coming in a heckuva lot faster then its leaving.

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