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Dolphins Tuesday practice: In pads for first time

The Dolphins brought out the football gear today as there was some, but not a lot, of contact for the first time this training camp.

Contact or no, this much is clear:

The Dolphins defense -- a unit with two new starting cornerbacks, two new starting linebackers and a new starting defensive end -- is way, way, way further along than the offense. Indeed, defensive tackle Jared Odrick said the defense's goal is to lead the NFL in sacks and be a Top 5 defense and the way they looked today, one shouldn't doubt that is attainable.

On the other hand, the offense ...


Not good.

Put it this way, the first play of the first team drill in front of the fans who came to watch practice was supposed to be a run left but quarterback Ryan Tannehill tripped over an offensive lineman's feet and fell down.

It wasn't a good day for Tannehill. He threw an interception to Chris Clemons in team drills. And he threw an interception to Dannell Ellerbe in seven-on-seven work. He seemed to be holding the ball a bit. Yes, he completed a beautiful pass to Charles Clay down the seam despite good coverage by Phillip Wheeler. And yes, he did have a 30-yard completion to Mike Wallace on a broken coverage by the secondary.

But otherwise, Matt Moore was the superior quarterback today. Moore, by the way, also threw an interception -- which Jimmy Wilson collected.

"I told the team I thought for our first day in pads we had a very productive practice," coach Joe Philbin said. "Obviously, we have stopping the run on defense. We had a good team run period. I was glad to see we had some takeaways there on defense."

Understand that bad news on offense is good news on defense. So when the Dolphins worked inside blitzes from linebackers Ellerbe and Wheeler that would have collected multiple sacks on Tannehill and Moore, Philbin viewed it as both good ... and somewhat distressing.

"It's good we got in there," Philbin said. "Conversely, you don't like to see two guys running free up in the A-gap."

You don't like to see the offensive line not getting in synch. And that was the case today. Jonathan Martin continues to lose the battle against Olivier Vernon. The interior offensive line did mostly manage a stalemate against Paul Soliai and Randy Starks and Jared Odrick.

But stalemates are not great for the offense but very good for the defense.

When Tannehill connected today it was mostly to backs out of the backfield or tight end Dustin Keller or receiver Brandon Gibson short across the middle. I predict either Keller or Gibson will lead the team in receptions this year. It makes sense. Both are vets. Both make themselves available to the QB. Their patterns are easy ones to complete.

The best news out of today's practice is that rookie first-round pick Dion Jordan is on track to be full go in practice perhaps Wednesday but almost certainly the weekend after the players get Thursday off.

Jordan, recovering from shoulder surgery, was in pads like everyone else today. He didn't participate in any major contact work. He didn't participate in team drills or live contact. But he is clearly progressing and concerns his injury will linger are unfounded. 

"We're teaching him the system, getting him acclimated to the schemes, concepts, teaching of that and then the fundamentals," Philbin said.

Philbin diminished the importance of the time Jordan missed during the offseason and the first couple of days of training camp. (I wonder if veterans who would love to miss minicamps would point the coach to his own words).

"He sat in the classroom. he's watched all the practice film and the correction. Obviously there has to be a point in time when he's got to do it for himself and feel it for himself and make a couple of mistakes and learn from them and move forward as a player." 

Jordan said he's not worried about the shoulder injury.

"I'm trying to put it beind me, no sling or anything," he said. "The next step is getting out there and doing more live drills."

The step after Jordan is fully immersed is starting a competition with second-year veteran Olivier Vernon. Right now, Vernon is killing it. He has easly gotten the better of Martin at least once in each practice on pass-rushes. He is, in my opinion, much better than the player I saw last year. 

Jordan is going to have to work very hard to take snaps away from Vernon.

"He's getting off on the snap count very, very well," Philbin said of Vernon. "He's got good leverage. I was down at the one-on-ones and he showed a nice spin move. He's doing some good things. He really is."

While Vernon is progressing, Jordan is obviously going through all the usual rookie issues. One of those is dealing with Paul Soliai, who had his annual hairdressing of the rookies Monday night. All of them along the defensive line are now wearing terrible color as part of their hairstyle.Dionjordan

"It's part of being a rookie. But I told him I'm a good vet," Soliai said of his conversation with Jordan. "I'm not going to have him do it the whole preseason. He's just got to wear it for two weeks starting today. I told him after that you can do whatever you want to do."

[NOTE: Come back in a bit for more practice highlights.]


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i'm sure the offense is struggling ONLY becuase it's early in camp. Come September, watch out!

Ross shells out millions this off season and the team is losing money, plus we have one of the worst stadiums in the NFL.

Couple that with Tannehill clearly looking like just another guy (i.e. an athlete playing Qb) and this team is in trouble.

Tannehill is clearly an athlete playing Qb. A receiver masquerading as a quarterback.

We face Weeden and Luck early on. We'll know right away what kind of class Tannehill is in.

It's funny, if you read the Palm Beach Post article it claims Tannehill and Wallace had a solid day working together.

Posted by: The Woodshed Gang


Which is EXACTLY why anyone getting all their Dolphins news from one source (like this one) is a damn fool if they fancy themselves even remotely 'informed.'

As a matter of fact, none of us will gain more than a cursory, extremely incomplete 'education' on how the 2013 team will do REGARDLESS of how much we read or how much attention we pay to completely meaningless preseason games.

They won't be running much of the actual playbook. Guys are kept out for the most minor of bumps and bruises and nobody in their right mind attaches the slightest importance to winning or losing exhibitions.

Practice reports? Guess when and where most of the actual playbook is installed? During those 'bubble' sessions that fans and reporters are NOT invited to.

No harm in idle speculation and trying (sometimes comically) to find meaning in every little bit of information someone can (oh, dear! Tannehill missed a pass in practice! We are doomed forever!) but ultimately it counts for very little.

The truth is that Ross cut more salary the he added. Is the team worse? Probably.

Consistently good, consistently mediocre but please be consistent.

Kristina never responded.

Posted by: I wonder why | July 23, 2013 at 12:26 PM

Because Kristina's life doesn't revolve around a football blog....

I told you YG....I have ZERO respect for you.....what you say...or how you address me matters NOT.....you are seen in a WHOLE NEW LIGHT around here....you are about as close to the definition of IRRELEVANT as I can think of....

To the guy who posted the YG post @ the beginning....good job....it should make it's way into EVERY blog until.....

I know you will be waiting for my next post....you have told us ALL in the last two blogs....

hold your breath...please.....

Are we really going start knocking Tannehill after 3 practices! Give me a break!!! Going by what Armando see's?

This team will be heads above last year!!!

Take that to the bank!!!!

The offence will be more pathetic then last year without Big Jake, playmaker Reggie Bush and premier blocker Fasano. Remember Tannehill got shut out when Martin played LT in the season finale.

Because Kristina's life doesn't revolve around a football blog....

Posted by: Kris | July 23, 2013 at 03:09 PM

Whatever you say Mr. Soap Opera. Your actions speak much louder than your words.

Tannehill should be a surgeon out there. He and I quote "knows the entire offense"

and I quote some more "is a leader now"

and I quote some more "has whole new collection of playmakers"

and I quote even more "has over 39 or so starts and now is the time we should see real growth."

AND yet he has yet to complete one deep pass and got picked off some Raiders castoff.

Let's be honest with ourselves here, Tannehill is an athlete playing Qb. He is not a natural Qb out there.

Boss, you do understand that the Dolphins conduct HALF their practices in the bubble where there are NO fans and NO reporters present, right?

You have every right to your opinion but when you state something like 'Tannehill has yet to complete one deep pass' the truth is you have absolutely no way of knowing that.

The defence is a unit that comes ready early, as a matter of fact, sometimes (not at this level of course), you have to improvise an offensive team with defensive players.
Also the fact that this defence was in the top 10 last season (I think #5, but not sure) and now is much better.
Moore can throw the deep ball better, no question, but as I understand, he is not facing the defence 1st team.

So in my opinion every thing comes as expected. we should see some improvement in two weeks.

I don't want to convince the trolls, trolls are trolls, but at this time is too early to worry.

Nothing changes with some people here. I'm looking forward to the 2nd and 3rd pre season game to see if we made progress. Any determination until then from a blogger is simply a person who thinks they know football, but never played a down. You can have opinions, but you truly don't know squat.

The most prominent thing I've seen in Blogs is that People there tend to fight, more often than not.

The fins will see that Wallace is not worth all that money and their QB isn't Big BEN the veteran.

mh and the ss say the same things. he suxx.
that is a brand new beat writer at pbp.who was covering tennis b4,
he doesn't and will never have a clue on who and what # is out there.so more excuse from the homers.

The fins will see that Wallace is not worth all that money and their QB isn't Big BEN the veteran.
Posted by: Jk Shan | July 23, 2013 at 03:52 PM


7-9 6-10 6-10 7-9. yeap,nuttin changes.

I'm amazed the NFL isn't ringing your phone off the hook with job offers, 2 watt.

How they could overlook such an astute and experienced judge of talent is beyond me. Must be a conspiracy.

and how do u kno if i don't work 4 the nfl huh?

mh and the ss say the same things. he suxx.
that is a brand new beat writer at pbp.who was covering tennis b4,
he doesn't and will never have a clue on who and what # is out there.so more excuse from the homers.

Posted by: 2 watt | July 23, 2013 at 03:53 PM

Nothing like trying to "Prove a Negative", eh....?

LOL - Shame on you.

and how do u kno if i don't work 4 the nfl huh?

Posted by: 2 watt


Just a hunch. Although I must say your superior ability to express yourself with intelligence and precision does make it possible you have a very high ranking position in the league offices.

(janitor for floors 37-42 perhaps)

I almost wish we had an experienced veteran as a back up RB. That position has so much promise but no guarantee's. Ilike LM, but have no clue how durable he is. thomas has not been. Thiggy between the tackles may not be durable, then Gillespie and Gray. Many ?????????? That is the scary position for me right now.

Totally agree with Poizen | July 23, 2013 at 03:49 PM

theyre still shyttti

The best way would be for everybody to post under their real name. But if that's not possible, at least post under the same name. Be consistent.

garbage in garbage out/ id say 7-9 or 6-10 just good enough not to be in a position to draft a real qb next year.totally shyt-e

"Phillip Wheeler would have sacked Tannehill on a LBER blitz. These O-linemen are confused about who is coming, who is dropping back."

This exactly why I anticipate "THE D" to be the star in 2013. Could have a potential to replicate "The '85 Bears" defense.

Mike Wallace is impressing me more and more. Running those outs and slants he could go all the way at anytime.

Michael Egnew report:

"Matt Moore picks up the safety blitz and completes a hot read to Michael Egnew, who gets stripped by a linebacker. FUMBLE. D recovers."


Man you all hating on RT are stupid as hell
dolpans can be so F*#%ing worthless. Go to a game you half way crook's! If you can get around the other AFC EAST fans.. pathetic!

But if that's not possible, at least post under the same name.

Posted by: oscar canosa



wow now thats a guy dreaming//st thomas defense would dominate the fins offense/going against that pop gun o what a joke or shall i say poop gun offense. the o lines a mess (still) the qb is mediocre at best (still) and they will miss the playoffs (again)

Who was the corner covering wallace? Was it Grimes most of the day? Or no?

if it wasnt for the jags the fins would be on a very short list to relocate to LA

The Rams and Chargers will both be relocating to LA if they ever get a stadium done.

The Dolphins are not even remotely n the conversation for tat and only a misinformed fool would think otherwise.

You're too refined for me, Mr. C.

Who are these DBs I hear are making good plays, a Presley, Posey?

One minute Mando's talking about how Tannehill doesn't have the arm that Big Ben has and the next he's complaining that Wallace was overthrown, something that rarely happened in Pittsburgh! If you're looking for bad stuff, you'll find bad stuff. And, if you're looking for good, you'll see good. Everyone knows that we had a very good Defense last year, that got better in the off-season, and that the defense is almost always better at this point in Training Camp...so, what is happening is to be expected! Duh! If practice wasn't being dominated by the D, then there would be a problem!

I'm not even sure Armando is even a fan of American football, much less a fan of the Dolphins (which apparently, he isn't...at all). Which makes me wonder how he got this job in the first place! And, why he hasn't moved on to another city covering another team that he could feel more comfortable with....you know, less biased against.

I guess they should hire all the negative guys as coaches that way
Will win the super bowl

chill your grills everyone, first off its pre season practice. secondly this defense is going to be one of the best in the league.

and today no int's thrown today. never listen to armando he's a clown case and point " I predict either Keller or Gibson will lead the team in receptions this year. It makes sense. Both are vets."

umm hartline and wallace are vets as well no? and hartline has great rapport with RT and wallace is better than all of them...

Hartline will lead the team in receptions and wallace will lead in yards and TDs. though i do expect keller and gibson to have a great season, saying the TE and 3rd WR is gonna lead the team in receptions is BEYOND idiotic.

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