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Bush decision could put spotlight on Thomas

Pregame before today's Dolphins game at Arizona will be interesting because the decision whether to play running back Reggie Bush will truly be made then, I'm told by a source.

I expect Bush, the Dolphins leading rusher, will try to be active for the game and in his usual starting role. But one never knows after a cross-country flight and sleeping in an unfamiliar bed how the knee he injured last week against the New York Jets will react. I told you last week Bush would miss one game at worst.

The Dolphins are hoping it doesn't come to that worst-case scenario. So come back here for the update.

If Bush is unable to play it will put much pressure on reserve Daniel Thomas, who is among the players I write in my column today that need to start performing better than they did the first three games of the season.

Today marks the NFL season's Week 4  and that means one quarter of the season will be done after today.

But with that marker looming, the Dolphins are needing and hoping for more production out of Thomas, out of Ryan Tannehill, out of Cameron Wake, and out of Richard Marshall. All of them are starting players. All of them have done some good things.

The Dolphins simply need them to deliver better than they have so far if the team is to stay anywhere near .500. The Dolphins need improvement from all of them and that's fair because all are capable of playing better.

Why is improvement so important from those guys?

Well, as I report in the column, we should not expect a cavalry charge of talent to be added via trade the rest of this season. So forget that idea of adding a last-minute receiver gifted to Miami by some other team before the trade deadline.

Comments

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link?

University of Phoenix Stadium.

When during OTAs his first season TS is the oc for the jets. And good riddance. He was 2nd only to Cam Cameron for worst head coach in the history of this franchise. done

Thomas tip-toes too much... For a back his size I expected to see a Jamal Lewis type... On top of that he's fumble prone....

_CA53,

I wasnt labeling Thomas bust. Was merely pointing out that rb's with problems coughing up the ball dont last long in this league. Thomas isnt a bust, but, he has to do a much better job holding onto the football.

RB school 101: 1st properly secure the ball

RB school 102: Properly secure the ball when forward progress has been stopped.

Thomas = 3 Irescum busts. Its no wonder Sparano didnt succeed with Irescum supplying him with D Thomas, Chad Henne, P Merling, etc, etc, etc. Philbin is doomed also without a GM.

I think people forget that the 3 draft picks they traded for Thomas was a 3, 5, and 7....since when were the latter two worth much? We traded a 3 for a 2 and lost s 5 and a 7, oh boy what a catastrophe lol

TGH
That guy FZB or what ever it is, thinks that JI is top notch GM in the league, I just want someone to point out how many impact wow makes your toes twinkle players JI has picked in the draft or F/A not average players. Average is mediocre and that doesn't win super bowls or puts a team in the playoffs! Someone point them out to me! I maybe two players. When a player is going to be great you see flashes as a rookie, like Dan JT Clayton Zach Duper Stevenson Jake long Richmond Webb. Surtain Madison ands on and so on as rookies they shined, it's early I give him that can't judge this class of rookies, because he didn't hit on no free agents, but at the end of this season we can,
But remember this guy FZB is the only fan here that knows everything you and I don't know crap! That's ok he who laughs last laughs the hardest! LETS GO PHINS LET'S WIN THIS FIRST ROAD WIN! I CAN'T STAND JEFF IRELAND!

Lets see some passes to backs out of the back field and to our TE's over the middle against linebackers. If the line continues to protect THill and he is given some of these short route options I think it starts to free up our receivers. Need more wrinkles added to the Offensive game plan this week.

Nat Moore,
You cannot be cut after your contract expires.
When your contract expires you are a free agent.
If you get picked up on day 1 like Henne and Lankford then you are a quality free agent.
If you are allowed to sit around for months until the Dolphins call then you are an acorn.
The good thing about being an acorn on the Dolphins is that you'll be the best player at your position.

We should let Bush have the game off because we can't beat a good team like AZ anyway.

Jpao
I agree with you, but let's hope Tannehill can hit on some deep balls also, that will stretch out that defense...Tannehill can hit those medium range passes but not seen the long ball yet, hopeful to see that today, with accuracy! I'm pulling for Tannehill to play well, I want him to succeed for the dolphin sake.

I'm glad everyoone thinks we are horrible and will lose every game because when we win they will all be humiliated!

Ha! Patrick turner is just as awful for the jets as he was for us. How did we lose to this team! They have no offense, and they can't even defend against a wildcat formation they practice against.

D20 @ 1:42 PM,

Youre correct to a degree. A 7th rd pick more often than not is a ps or developmental player. So no biggies there. The only significant pick traded for Thomas was the 5th rd'er.

Many like to say 3 picks were traded for Thomas, they know this isnt true. 2 picks were traded(5th/7th), the 3rd and 2nd were only swapping draft positions. Its just that "Ireland haters" like to overembellish to fuel thier "FireIreland campaign.

Still, it can be highly 2nd guessed that, "Couldnt we have found a rb sufficient enough using a 3rd or 5th rd pick on him"? There were solid enough rb's available and Ireland basically traded a 5th and 7th pick, to again basically, move to the very top of the 3rd rd.

I say "top of the 3rd rd" because D Thomas was last player selected 2nd rd. Which basically means "youre the very 1st player selected in the 3rd rd. D Thomas is far more a 3rd rd player than 2nd rd player. Ireland traded a 5th and 7th to move to the top of 3rd rd.

Barring D Thomas ever has a 1,500yd rushing season, Im sure that's one draft decision Ireland wished he could put back into his pocket. But perhaps Thomas was the highest rated rb according to thier evaluation system and they feared he wouldnt be available come thier turn to pick 3rd rd. Still it can be argued "other backs were available". 2011 was a very solid class for rb's.

YG, it eas 3 picks fot Thomas.

For the record, Pats look done as a dynasty.

Can Ireland and Philbin take advantage of that?

We will see. We will see.

To me, it looks like the Bills turn to be back atop the AFC east.

PS...I wanted Chan Gailey.

Back in the 80' early 90'. A 7 round pick was a valuable pick, remember the draft had 12 rounds.

Was there a cap in the 80's?

I picked the bills in preseason to win the division, and people here called me a idiot!
Hey I might still be a idiot, but the tide is changing in the AFC east!

I'd take Wanny back in a second.

Bring back Chad Henne- what the hell- Tannehill 1 td pass & 4 interceptions. This guy sucks played only 18 college games @ QB and beat no ranked teams. Nice pick Ireland.

No cap in the 80'. But team salaries were not 120.6 million dollars either.

77,

To say "3 picks" is elementary my dear Watson. First of all "to pick any player" requires "1 pick". There's just no other way around that part. Unless, of course, that player is an "undrafted rookie free agent".

Now lets get to the "7th rd" pick. I mean, do we really have to argue this pick? Im not, far more often than not, a 7th rd pick used on a rb is lucky if he lasts 2 yrs in the league on ps. He had better be an extremely heavy st's member to keep recieving a paycheck. I mean what can you really draft with a 7th, but a st's player?

Now, let's talk about that 5th rd pick. Is a "real valid issue". 2011 was a very solid class" for rb's. Now, this can be highly argued, that a single 3rd or the traded 5th rd could have netted a rb pretty much the same quality.

Basically 2 picks of any kind of real quality were used on a rb, when 1 pick on that solid class may have sufficed. We had extra 7th rd picks, so that was no biggie. just l;ike throwing in a ps player.

ray,

Before 1976, a 7th rd'er was more valuable, simply because there were far less nfl teams drafting period. That automatically upgrades the draft pool.

That's really the greatest the problem the nfl faces when considering awarding new franchises. It instantly dilutes the talent pool. Can you imagione if there were 50 nfl teams? The sb winning team would virtually not get a 1st rd pick. Thier 1st rd pick would actually be the 18th player of the 2nd rd. Because current there are 32 nfl teams(32 + 18 = 50).

So if there were a 100 rounds, you telling me the same players won't get picked in the first 7 rounds?

Lets say it was a 1000 rounds. Doesn't that mean the 100th round would contain valuable picks using your own theory.

Here is a thought. Let's stick to the 21st century. Reminiscing about the good old days is pretty useless.

PS...THIS IS THE PROBLEM! Ireland is stuck int he 20th century and Philbin is stuck in Green Bay. He thinks he can put together a Green Bay team with Dolphin players that Ireland drafted.

ray,

So yeah, 37yrs ago, a 7th rd pik could hold the value of a mid to bottom rd 6th rd pick.

When a product costs $3 YG claims its only $2 because he' getting something back. You all get that? LOL

Yesterdays gone
I agree more teams, but also more college teams are evolving with the pro style offense and defenses, which means that players coming out of the smaller colleges are more prepared and more talented to in the NFL game. Even high schools play the pro style offense and defense. But I agree with you. Good points.

Jack Sparrow,

Youre right, the number of rds doesnt increase value. Its the number of teams picking that increases or decreases value. That's the biggest problem the nfl faces when adding new teams. The quality talent pool immediately shrinks. The nfl dillutes its own product.

ray,

It doesnt mean the college players are getting better. It means "certain positions" get better according to the systems colleges presently.

In today's college era, less focus is now being placed on passin tha running. So players playing at positions directly affected by this will be more nfl ready. But its reducing a rb's role to "a dime a dozen".

ray,

Also, the one thing college football cant reproduce when using pro style offenses and defenses, is nfl speed of the game all across the board.

I guess the Pats haven't heard their dynasty is over.

14 points in 4 minutes.

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