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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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thepirate19 ,

Ireland is setting new records for most busts ever bt a GM.

"Also, thank God we office workers are not held to the same standard these kids are. Most of us are 15 minutes late every day and then spend all day on this blog!!! (myself included)"

I'll say this--I'm glad Philbin's not my boss. LOL!!!

BTW--I find it laughable that people are already calling Thomas a "bust." I would imagine that Thomas is not the only player to come late to something on this team & get a warning from a new HC. However, as fans I think we just want to hear that every player is always doing EXACTLY what he is supposed to do all of the time & that's just not reality.

I hope Thomas comes out this year & plays with a chip on his shoulder after this.

By the way, you would hear it on hear from anyone else but kudos to Ireland for not 'giving away' Davis. A 6th or 7th for Davis would have been ridiculous. He held tight to what he felt was fair value. I actually think he did well to a get a second and conditional for him. The reality is that Davis is a FA in two years. He's too unreliable and inconsistent to build around and invest another big contract in. Davis might show something in the next couple of years but once he's got that new contract he's likely to get fat and happy again. That's been his pattern. Better to deal him now while you can still get something for him, rather than waste big bucks on a new contract. I'm all for this move. Let's see what Marshall, Smith and Carroll can do, and if the need is there draft a cornerback high next year.

As they stand today, this is probably the worst team in the league. DESPERATION mode once again. This melodrama continues to repeat itself year after freaking year. Ross is blind and Ireland is an IDIOT! They need to trade two ridiculously overpaid players effective immediately-Dansby and Soliai. Also they need to release players that are weak and get injured during practice games ie., Hartline. Fasano needs to go he can't catch worth a damn and if he was standing in front of me right now I would slap some sense across his ugly face. The talent so called scouts all need to be fired and walk behind Ireland out of the building. They think now id the time to go and make trades? And bring in whom? Cooley? He does'nt want to play for another team and his prime years are gone. Whom? More outcasts. BOYCOTT this team, DON:T BUY TICKETS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Yup. He's terrible and lazy and doesn't care. Waste of a second round pick. I would like to see a chart of miamis draft picks over the last ten yrs and see how long each player lasted on the team and the nfl


Please....Just stop it.

RBs @ 10:51....

I'll 2nd that...about Philbin NOT being my boss...

If Thomas was any good they wouldnt have drafted a RB so early and brought in a CFL RB.

By the way, I know it's not a popular opinion on here but I have no interest in Cooley. For what? So he can get us to 5 or 6 wins? No thanks. I liked Cooley in his prime but he's not the same guy now. I'd like to see what we have in Egnew and Clay. We need to know what these guys have and need to see them develop some rapport with Tannehill. If they can't it looks like we need to draft TE again in April. I was hopeful about Clay but he's a big question mark right now.

Ireland could draft a QB,WR, OL and RB, EVERY YEAR and still not get it near right.


thomas is a nice back; if he can stay healthy and paired with bush and the kid from u of m, we could have a deadly running attack

also, after watching mallett with the patriots in pre-season, i'm actually glad we passed on him for thomas

that's the real comparison in my mind

Seems like during the off season, everyone is in stealth mode when they should be busy scouting talented players to trade as well as draft. I believe the arrogance is so much that they don't even pay attention to the analysts during combine and what they have to say. Ross should hire Michael Lombardi as Ireland's replacement. A positive start for a change to give this fan base SOME hope.

Monte? 'Drafted a running back so early?' Are you talking about Miller? Everyone's under the impression that he was great value in the 4th. Is this the move you're criticizing? If Bush isn't here next year, as expected, we're going to be thankful for having a guy like Miller on the team. Nothing wrong with having some depth and competition at RB.

Craig M...

Cooley can help teach these guy how to be proffesionals....thats the value he brings to the table....

As far as getting us extra wins....he coudn't get the Skins any extra wins...

Vet minimum....sign him for 2 years..."release" him after one...he's gonna get injured @ some poin anyway....

I had a feeling from last year...he always had some kind of hurt. He may have one effulgent moment followed by a dozen pedestrians ones. Great physical specimen...with no heart. No desire to punish. No desire to excel.

I think--& I'm guilty of this as well--that fans are EXTREMELY naive about what goes on in the day to day of being an NFL player. These guys are not robots, they're people & mostly kids right out of college. They are ALL flawed in some shape or form. We expect them to be perfect & to do everything right & never make mistakes on or off the field. It's just never going to happen no matter who the owner, the GM, or coaches are. This is the reality of the NFL or the NBA or MLB.

this is a bad football team.
hello!, rock bottom?,"yeah" say hello to the phinz."hi".lol.
0-16 a possibility.

yes NH I'm also saying it was a mistake that VD is not the starter. he should have been kept and been the starter


I don't put ANY man on a pedestal....never have....I don't do autographs....I believe all men put their pants on one leg @ a time like myself....

I just expect the athlete to perform...understand his duties...hone his craft....and be the BEST he can be @ his postion....the same I think many would expect of me if I was being paid millions....

I do agree with Craig and Kris too.

In short, Thomas has potential, he might be great, and this will be the year to see it.

But Mando's post is talking about PRACTICE. Practice!?!! Come on!! WE talkin about practice??!


I guess it was too much for you and I to agree on everything today...LOL. I get why you and others are saying sign him. I just don't think it would be a smart move. Fasano could teach the kids already here. That's also Dan Campbell's job too. We need to find out of these guys have a chance of beoing good or not. I just don't think Colley does anything for this team. He's a spare part at this point in his career who could maybe help take a playoff team over the top. Gutsy player....just don't think he's a good fit for this team.

Hey dudes, are we talkin' about practice?

Practice?!? I mean...come on!!!

We talkin' about practice!!?!

I don't think expecting Thomas...or any other member of this team to....

Be ON TIME for a meeting..

Be ON TIME for a flight...

Or any other type of menial task that fits into his daily description of job related task is expecting to much....

I am not looking for choir boys.....

I was a Chad Johnson supporter...and Brandon Marshall...

I believe you have to EARN the right to get a pass on these things....remember those days...

I don't think it really matters what we think. I think Cooley will have options and coming to Miami will be very low on his list. He'll be asked to bust his ass and for what? To finish 4-12 or 5-11? Don't think so. I know we disagree on this Kris but I think this is our reality. We're going to get hammered by a far superior team in Houston week 1 and we won't be able to get up off the canvas after that.

Incidentally, it's off topic but for me it's either Houston or SF for the Super Bowl this year. I know I'll hear about it for the next 10 years but that's the limb I'm going out on.

I wrote a new rap. It goes to the beat of the '85 Bears' "Super Bowl Shuffle." And it go a little sumpin like thiiiiiis:

They call me Retard, and I drop the pass.
Battin' the ball is like makin' romance.
My hands like stones, I make interception
Happen like lightning from shoulda been reception.
Aaaw yeah.
Aaaw yeah.

They call me Weakness, and I drop the pass.
Catching the ball, is like drinkin hot gas.
So I don't do it, no you'll never see
A completed pass completed to me.

-Anthony Fasano

Do y'all like my rap?

Kris @11:14am,

Very good points. Very well said.

Nothing wrong with Philbin layin it on the line with this kid with what's expected of him early. Hopefully we can avoid a similar situation with him like we saw with Davis and Philbin last night.

I will say the guy that Thomas reminded me of most when he was drafted was Sammie Smith. To me Sammie was a guy who could have and should have been better. The light didn't really go on for this guy the way it should have. Hopefully for a few years it will with Thomas. Sounds like he might be on watch.

Sammie Smith. Ugh. Speaking of Ronnie Brown. Ronnie Brown was Sammie Smith. Nicer kid, not a criminal, but productionwise on the field.

Rock Bottom ... good song by Kiss

And worse places for the Dolphins to be this year. That first overall pick will bea real peach. To either use or trade for a bounty thanks to the Washington Redksins for setting the market price on picks to be used for top shelpf QB prosepcts in this new cap friendly draft format that's under the new CBA.

Let's face it the teams that are the best off in the NFL are the super bowl winners and the team that drafts first overall. They are the only ones to take something tangible from the season. Everyone else are losers. You want to be one of those two teams amd we have no shot at the big one.

Indy and the Giants last year. They took the prizes .. everyone else (except maybe Washington and St. Louis) were left wondering waht might have been.

i not only don't think thomas is a bust, i think by game 5 he'll be the one carrying the load while bush will almost be exclusively used as a receiver and change of pace back. the guy runs hard and takes people with him. i wish he would have gotten more carries in preseason but he had 5 runs where you could see the kind of back he is. power!! if jerry can keep improving and bettering his conditioning the line ail make seems for him and he will get lots of yards and soften defenses.

Actually I agree. Thomas thus far reminds me of Sammie Smith and Ronnie Brown. All three have/had identical physical attributes.

I'm HOPING that Thomas turns out to be good, unlike the other two.

Well, Brown was good before injuring his knee trying to make a tackle after an interception from the 1 inch line on what should have been a running play called by Cam Loser's staff, but after that he was done.

And as far as smarts and Vontae Davis goes. There's only one guy on the field that I care is really intelligent or not - that's the QB. I care that everyone else is a professional and athletic. The problem with Vontae is that he was stupid -which you can make a good case for - it's that he was very immature.

personally, I think he would've come out of it and it would've been wiser to hold him because of the investment ... but whatever ...

A running backis no better than an offensive line. Many of us criticized Ricky Williams when he bolted but had he not, he would have never been healthy when returned. A QB is no better than the OL. No player can continue to take a physical beating they must endure with the Phins OL over the past 10 years.

MONTE, they drafted miller( who hasn't shown a lot) to replace bush not thomas and because he was a value pick. dropped below where he should have been drafted. and the kid from canada was brought in to pretty much be a return man.

totally agree with Jaison. that's what I've been saying

Craig M.

I'm not criticizing drafting Miller, just pointing out that if Thomas was any good they wouldn't have had to.

So looks like it's pretty much a foregone conclusion that Long would/should miss the start of the season. So whta do we do now at LT? Should Martin play there or Murtha? I don't think it makes any sense for Jerry to move there, as it seems like he is settling in to RG again. I haven't mich about Murtha. Is he even healthy? We don't have a lot of options really. Does it make sense to go out and add a guy like Gaither for depth purposes? Should Martin play LT tonight to see how he does? Thoughts guys/

I'd like to see Martin play there tonite....

However..if he is as week as you guys say he is....oh boy....



Miller and Thomas aren't the same backs. They do different things. Miller in the 4th was good value. It allows them to potentially replace Bush nexy year or possibly even trade him this year. Miller hasn't shown much this year but let's give him some time first.


That's what I would do too. Let's see what he's got at LT. Let him make the makes in preseason and let them figure it out after that.

Talk on CNNSI this morning that 'some crazy things are ahead with this Dolphins roster'. I wouldn't be surprised to see things such as Bush and Dansby being traded. I can see Ireland really loading up for next years draft. If we end up being dead last, it would be interesting to see what teams would give us for the right to draft Barkley, assuming he goes first over all. Could we get something similar to what the Rams got for RGIII?

Craig,you missed the point.....


I didn't. You're saying that drafting Miller in the 4th was an indictment towards Thomas. I'm saying it wasn't. You're reading into it too much. Nothing wrong with having a stable of good backs.

If Thomas was any good we could've used the 4th pick on a WR.

Thomas will soon be the 3rd RB option on a poor team. If thats worth 3 draft choices, I'm Ryan Tanehill.....

Craig M,

L.Miller was drafted to replace R.Bush in 2013 don't get it twisted. If not for a BAD injury in College he'd have gone much higher was the kind of home run hitter from anywhere on the field Bush was at USC. Before you reply remember Bush was at the point when we traded for him a player always hurt who did most of his damage on Punt returns, the hope is L.Miller in 2013 will be enough removed from his knee injury to get all the way back something that dogged Bush in N.O. and they had to have this type of speed player waiting in the wings given I don't think Reggie resigns next Yr. here for all the tea in China, he thought they stunk last Yr. you wonder what he thinks today ??

Bush will barring injury be a HOT commodity in the next F.A. period, mark it! He's a player that likes to win and this comedy of errors has to be wearing awfully thin! D.Thomas whom Ireland jumped the gun for was drafted to replace the R&R express but I felt and posted that a RB out of Oklahoma who did what D.Murray did a better bet than Thomas out of K-St.

I had him in my mock with us trading up into the 2nd Rd. for him and was off given he was the there for the picking in Rd-3 which is a head scratcher for me. I don't want to call Thomas a bust and liked the effort Vs. Atl. but your comparison about Miller coming in for D.Thomas is way off and we better hope the lights come on for D.Thomas. They could easily still, don't forget D.Vermiel ripping his RB L.Johnson for being a slacker who couldn't cut the mustard and after that the guy came out gang busters sending Priest Holmes to the bench but the things in this kids attitude and weak (scared of contact play) so far leave much to desire.

Excuse me Craig M confused you with Monte making the comparison !

By all accounts the Fins will have a top 5 draft pick next year...nobody expects us to get above 4 wins this year.

Use this season to see who buys into the "Philbin Philosophy" and who shuts down and becomes the locker room cancer...aka Joey Porter.

I see this year as a 4 month training camp so that Philbin & Co. can hand pick their guys for the future...everyone else is gone!

Were not even in "rebuild" mode yet as we're still in "teardown" mode.

Gonna be a long year gents.

BREAKING NEWS- jeff ireland just hired as new dolphins mascot, flipper fired! ireland will take on yet another new impotant position at sun life stadium as the new dolphins mascot. he will be dressed in a jackass costume parading around the sidelines chearing the team to victory! it has been rumored that owner stephen ross will be joining a new comedy act at half time shows at sun life stadium dressed as groucho marx.no rubber nose required. also, it was just learned that jeff irelands church chior will be singing at opening day ceremonies. songs will include favorites such as "send in the clowns"


Let's talk at the end of the season when it's all done. If Thomas can stay healthy this year he'll put up good numbers. We can only hope that Philbin has now got his attention. If Thomas shows what he's capable of early I fully expect Bush to be trade before week 6. That's my prediction. I think this team is going nowhere this year and I think Ireland will try and get something for Bush, rather than losing him for nothing at the end of the year.

Guys I like signing Gaither and would be insurance at RT if J.Martin's struggles with the pass rush continue. I for one wish we'd signed B.Grubbs in F.A. while giving J.Jerry his shot at LT but you wonder what he can do out there at the 350 to 345 range which has to make him slower handling the speed rush off the left.

I feel J.Martin is troublesome at RT and could get Tannehill killed early and often on his blind side. The kid is getting kudos from his Coaches but lets be honest he's got a ways to go. I feel Murtha and Garner are safer bets but that isn't saying much. I will ask though if J.Long's chronic Tony Bosselli like injuries aren't a worry and if maybe given a rebuild shouldn't be on the block making the Parcells/Ireland tenure a complete flop!!

hey played pretty good last game. If he runs like that he can be as late as he wants.


I like Gaither too but I think we have to ask why this guy keeps becoming available. He's bounced around a little the last couple of years. He's not even making it to the final cuts now. Why? I agree he's be good insurance for Long/Martin. The problem is if the Dolphins sign him they'd have to guarantee his contract for the season and I'm not sure they are prepared to do that. I could be wrong. I've always liked this guy....I just don't get why he keeps getting cut.

The only way we get anything like a 3 at least for Bush would be if he were to be extended and that isn't going to happen. So given taking some low throw away pick Reggie ain't going nowhere.

I don't see how philbin lasts if Ireland gets fired unless he has full control. Any new GM will want their own coach.


I don't agree with you. I think you could get a fourth for Bush. Some team would pay it if it meant they'd have him for 10-12 games and possibly the playoffs. You said it yourself, he'd be highly sought come FA. So why wouldn't a team pay that for him. I actually think there would be a few teams that would want him.

Have anybody notice that Philbin wants perfect players perfect character can't screw up or you are out of here..boy the whole team except Tannehill are walking on egg shells!! Me personally can't work like that it's hard to perform your job when any stupid thing gets you cut or traded, I think Philbin has mental issues, with the lost of his son and all he very unhappy person. Boy I wouldn't want him as a dad if he is that picking about everything either.

Craig M,

I don't completely disagree but like you said somewhere after the 1st month of the Season when a team with aspirations gets deperate. I could see the NFC North as a great landing spot in either Det. or G.B. The Lions are looking ready to give up on M.Leshoure, Best is always hurt and the other RB just blew out his knee, so could be a spot. The other G.B. picked up C.Benson who was never known for his hands and looks like a bad fit but again this will happen if it does before the end of the trade deadline not today, your thoughts on J.Long his injuries and trading him at this point?


Why trust him with managing a team?
Why trust him with drafting players?
Why trust him with signing free agents?
Why trust him with hiring coaches?


Beside riding Tuna's coattail into a GM position, WHAT HAS HE DONE THAT DESERVES BEING TRUSTED?

You it is true makes me awfully nervous trading the few pieces we have overloading our 2013 picks if Ireland is running the show.

It's amazing to me how old staff, new staff, accepts being total fu$%ing LOSERS!

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