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4 posts from October 25, 2012

October 25, 2012

War of words getting heated now

You already know the Jets are flappin' gums about how they have Reggie Bush intimidated and worried about getting hurt based on the last meeting in which the Dolphins running back suffered a knee injury.

You know LaRon Landry said incidiary things and referenced head-hunting. Well, so did Aaron Maybin.

"We want to knock him out but we want to do it legally," Maybin told ESPNNewYork.

I predicted that kind of stuff would be answered today by the Dolphins. Well, the Dolphins are answering.

Enter Dolphins center Mike Pouncey.

"He won't even play enough to hurt Reggie," Pouncey said of the reserve Jets linebacker. "I don't even want to talk about talk about him. He's a joke."

Game on.

Pouncey also made the point that if he wants to get at Maybin it'll have to be on special teams.


By the way, the Jets have made 469 tackles this season. Maybin has accounted for one of those.

Mild mannered Richie Incognito (sarcasm), meanwhile, was more cryptic in his commentary.

"We hear all the talking going on," Incognito said. "We understand it's part of Jets week and all that. But all the talking stops on Sunday."

As Randy Starks chimed in, "We do our talking on the field."

Coach Joe Philbin, predictably, wants nothing to do with the trash talking. In his typically calm manner he said, "It's a free country. They can say what they want."

Marshall to miss third game with back injury

Richard Marshall, the Dolphins cornerback who has missed the last two games with a back injury, will also miss Sunday's game at the New York Jets as well, according to a source.

That should really come as no surprise. Marshall hasn't practiced since Sept. 28 and hasn't played since Sept. 30 against Arizona. He missed the games against Cincinnati and St. Louis without even practicing the weeks leading to those contests.

He didn't practice last week during the bye. And he missed practice again today, to go with his missing practice on Monday and Wednesday.

He's not available and will miss his third game of the season.

Nolan Carroll, who has started the past two games for Marshall, will do so again Sunday at MetLife Stadium.

On another note, defensive tackle Randy Starks is back at practice today. He missed practice Wednesday for personal non-football reasons.

YB: Still the same cool cat

The divorce between Yeremiah Bell and the Dolphins was too cold for me. Bell played eight seasons for the Dolphins and was a starter most of that time. He was even a Pro Bowl player for them one year.

And yet when he was waived by the Dolphins in the offseason it was done and he was gone and no one said good-bye and no one gave a statement and that was that. Cold.

Bell has found a new home as a New York Jets starting safety. In fact, there are a handful of former Dolphins on the Jets including Lex Hilliard and Clyde Gates and coaches including Tony Sparano and Mike Westhoff and Dave DeGuglielmo.

And those former Dolphins no doubt have embraced the Jets culture and now want to whip the Dolphins as much as they wanted to whip the Jets when they worked in Miami. But hard feelings?

Not for Bell, despite the untidy send-off.

"No hard feelings," Bell said late Monday evening. "I know it’s a part of the business. I would have maybe liked to have finished my career there, but that’s not what happened, so no hard feelings. The Dolphins gave me the opportunity to pursue a career and I thank them for that. I have nothing bad to say about them at all."

YB is a classy cat. Always was. Remains that way. He is the anti-LaRon Landry.

What else did he tell the Miami media during his conference call with the locals? This:

On Reshad Jones: The thing I see from Reshad is that he’s really growing up as a player. He’s really embracing his role as a starter. When I was there with those guys and kind of got to tutor them a little bit, I could tell that they were going to be good players if they keep their heads in it (and) listened to what the coaches told them. The more games they play, the better they’ll be. It’s just good to see that he’s maturing and becoming a good safety in this league."

On Miami’s offense: "They’re really spreading guys out and getting them the ball in places where they can get it and make plays. They’re getting guys the ball in space, kind of letting them do their thing and they’re doing a good job at it. They’re a lot quicker as far as getting to the line of srimmage, huddling up and getting a play started. I think they all have a pretty good understanding of what they’re trying to accomplish on offense." 

On Ryan Tannehill: He’s poised and he’s confident. You don’t see that much from rookie quarterbacks, the confidence level that he has. He’s playing some good ball. The higher your confidence is, the better you feel and the better you play. He has a great understanding of what they’re trying to do on offense. He knows where to go with the ball. He’s good at reading defenses, so he’s doing a great job."

On losing Darrelle Revis: To lose a guy like Darrelle, oneof the best defensive players in the league, is big. You can’t replace Darrelle with just one guy, so it’s a total team effort, but at the same time, we have to continue to play the style of defense that we’ve been playing. Have we went to more zone? Maybe we have, maybe we haven’t. We just can’t do some of the things that we could do when Revis was in the lineup. Now, we have to play the whole field instead of just letting Revis lock down that one side."

On getting Dustin Keller back: "Dustin’s a guy (who) works the middle of the field. Not having him the first game was big for us. Now that we have him back, (he’s) a guy that works the middle of the field. You have to respect him. He’s a guy that can get open. He knows how to sit down in zones. He knows how to beat man-coverage. He does a good job at that. The challenge for them is going to be covering the guy. He’s a big target. He knows how to use his body and he’s very smart when it comes to manning his own situation, so it’s going to be a challenge for them."

On his return to Miami in Week Three: "When I came back, it was a little different, just from the aspect that I had been there so long. Playing on a new team and playing in a stadium where I played my whole career, that was a little bit different. But it was great to come back, see some of the guys (and) just play in the stadium again. When those guys come up here, I think it will be a lot of the same thing. I’m better prepared for it now, so we’re just going go out there, try to play a good game and try to come away with a win."

On still being with Sparano: "It’s a little different, but it’s still the same old Tony. I hear his voice every day. He’s doing a lot of the same things he did when he was in Miami, (like) screaming at guys in practice. The only thing that’s really changed is his title, but for the most part, he’s the same guy."

On being in New York: "It’s been good. One thing that I really was surprised about is how much the media coverage is different out here. There’s probably two times as much media here as there was when I was there. For the most part, it’s all the same. Football is football. It’s a great experience either way. I’ve enjoyed my time here. I’m having a good time and just looking to win some football games."

On how different it was playing in Miami for another team: "It was different from the aspect of me being on a new team, but at the same time, I play on the Jets now, so I am on the other side of that rivalry. What we want to do is beat the Dolphins. When I was on (Miami) it was vice versa. I’m not really worried about which side I’m on. I’m just glad I’m on a side and I’m just going out there trying to win games. That’s what it’s about."

On if this Sunday’s matchup is a crossroads game: "Yes, we need this game. There’s nothing else to say about it. This game is huge for us. It’s a division game. We don’t want to (be) 3-5. We want to stay up in the division. There’s still a lot of season to play, but we know the important games. This is
one of them and one that we need to win. I’m sure they feel the same way."

LaRon Landry comments may awaken Dolphins

LaRon Landry is apparently not thinking this one through. Either that or he has to lay off the Red Bull. 

The clinical evidence of what I'm saying was apparent Thursday when Landry got to chirpin' to the New York media about what he's done and what he's going to do to Reggie Bush and the Dolphins.

Landry, you may recall, is the Jets safety that basically was credited with the tackle on the play in which Bush, Miami's running back, injured a knee back in the Week Three meeting between the teams.

And now Landry believes that otherwise routine tackle is going to play mind games with Bush and make the former Heisman Trophy winner nervous or scared everytime Landry gives him the evil eye or stank breath or whatever.

"He will remember that hit,” Landry told The New York Daily News on Wednesday. “Every time he sees me, he will remember that hit... if I'm in the box or coming downhill."

And this:

"Just watch the way (Bush) runs on Sunday,” Landry added. “I'm not going to overtalk it or make it a story."

Landry suggested he's something of a head-hunter and he's going to be trying to bag an new skull on Sunday.

"If I get penalized, I'm not going to stop hitting or head hunting,” Landry said. “I'm not going to stop the way I play.”

Ohhhhhhh. I perceive Bush is afraid now.


Not really.

Angry maybe. Motivated. Not afraid.

What's worse, Landry apparently wants all the Dolphins to feel that way, too.

As if announcing oneself as a head-hunter is not enough to get one's knees taken out, Landy also predicted the Jets were going to beat the Dolphins. This nugget he gave to ESPN New York.

"This game is a must-win," Landry said. "We can sweep these guys and also get to the bye at 4-4. That's what we're striving to do and that's what we will do."

Is this dude for real?

Look, professional football is a grown man game. It is not for the weak or feeble. But Landry may just find out it is also not for the feeble of intelligence.

By calling out Bush, he has thus angered Miami's best offensive player at minimum and likely all of his offensive teammates as well. I will be counting the number of times a Miami offensive lineman will be lining up Landry for a tooth extraction shot on Sunday.

Furthermore, in predicting a victory, now Landry is certain to awaken the ire of the Miami defense, too. I have zero doubt that Landry's comments will make their way to Miami players Thursday -- either through the coaching staff or the media or both.

And for what?

What did Landry accomplish with his bravado? He certainly is not intimidating anyone as he seems to believe. Indeed, he might have made himself a target. And he might have awakened the otherwise unassuming Dolphins.

The irony of this is that Bush and Landry are tied in a manner of speaking. They are both represented by super agent Joel Segal. And Segal is betting both stay healthy and continue to play at a high level to get each a new deal in 2013.

Bush is a free agent as his deal with Miami runs out and Landry's one-year deal with the Jets similarly is set to expire after this season.

All Landry has done is suggest Bush will be hurt again -- thus possibly limiting Bush's earning ability going forward. And he's made himself a target for reprisal -- thus possibly limiting his own earning ability going forward. Segal would be wise to explain this to the safety.

Crazy stuff, right?

There's a reason Bill Belichick doesn't allow talk like this. Landry may soon understand that reason.