« Dolphins dump Carpenter, keeping Sturgis | Main | John Denney signs three-year extension »

Camp over: Most improved awards

The Dolphins are done with training camp, per se, because next week they begin operating on a regular-season schedule. And as this is the end of two-a-days (well, one practice and a walk-thru), coach Joe Philbin was asked to name players he believes have elevated their game since the start of camp.

"A lot of the guys, some of the first-year guys that we've had going into year two have improved," Philbin said. "Mike Egnew has improved an awful lot. He's a guy we're excited about. Olivier Vernon has taken a step forward. Jonathan Martin, Lamar Miller. A lot of those young players that we have, Josh Kaddu is another that last year at this time was feeling his way through, has made a lot of progress. I think the first or second-year guys have done a nice job."

It's encouraging that Egnew has gone from being totally lost to competing for a roster spot and actually having a chance to win one based on performance. (Last year, he was on the roster based on draft status). Although he is still a second-team player, Egnew might sneak in as a back-of-the roster guy because offensive coordinator Mike Sherman loves having the flexibility of having a jillion tight ends.

Today, I would say Dustin Keller, Charles Clay, and rookie Dion Sims are definitely on the team. All three have had good to very good camps. Egnew's status will hinge on whether the Dolphins consider Clay a fullback and keep him as that -- opening a tight end job -- or perhaps if the team sees him as more valuable than a fifth wide receiver.

As an aside, notice that list of names Philbin mentioned includes just about every second-year player except quarterback Ryan Tannehill. It's probably just an omission. But it bears mention just in case it is not an omission because Sherman this offseason predicted Tannehill would be the "most improved" quarterback in the entire NFL.

And the head coach doesn't include him as one of the most improved players on the team?

This is not a controversy or major issue. Just an observation. 

Here's another observation that might give a peak into the kind of player Philbin wants on his team. In discussing the decision to go with Caleb Sturgis as the team's kicker over Dan Carpenter, Philbin mentioned this:

"I liked his demeanor the other night," the coach said of Sturgis. "He was very professional about things. Wasn't jumping up and down. He did his job and did it well. He was very serious about what he was doing."

Sturgis connected on a 58-yard field goal, which does not happen every day. And Philbin appreciated that the rookie didn't think he'd done something extraordinary. The coach appreciated that the rookie was businesslike.

That's what Philbin wants in players. Businesslike. Not too high. Not too low. Consistent. Basically he wants players that are, well, like him.

Nope, Philbin won't be doing a fist pump after a field goal any time soon. It's just not him. And he likes that Sturgis didn't, either.

Along those lines, defensive end Olivier Vernon, who has pretty much won a starting defensive end job, didn't exactly throw a party once he learned the path is cleared for him to be the starter.

"No, I haven't celebrated, man," Vernon said. "I feel like anyone on this defensive line can start so it's just competition. Still, I don't try to think about it like that, man."

Even when he was told Philbin mentioned him among the most improved players in camp, Vernon seemed unmoved.

"All that means to me, man, is keep going harder," he said. "I don't try to focus what other people say about me. I just try to be the same person every day."

The Dolphins signed six-year veteran defensive end Antwan Applewhite today. He's a classic 4-3 defensive end that helps guard against the possibility rookie Dion Jordan won't be fully ready to play once the season begins. 

"We brought him in here, he had a good workout and we wanted to see what he could do," Philbin said.

Applewhite's first day is obviously the last day of training camp so he's behind, but he doesn't seem to worried that's going to be an issue.

"It's not my first go-around. I've done it before," he said. "Two years ago I got to Carolina in like week 5. I was in San Fran two weeks into training camp before that. So, I'm pretty used to that. I'm going on my seventh year so I know pretty much how teams schedule and stuff goes. It's just learning all the new verbiage and putting it in my head how I can understand it."


Feed You can follow this conversation by subscribing to the comment feed for this post.

So Martin Grammatica then would never be the Dolphins PK???

Nobody available to sign for the OL, eh? Or is Mike Sherman just that happy with it?


Miami media can't keep bashing Tannehill. U people will look like idiots when the season is over !

Mark...from the previous blog...
Chris Rock says there is no sex in the champagne room...can you verify this???

Tannehill is a given, man.

I guess all the regular queens will be appearing anytime now to repeat all the same things they've been saying for months.

Excellent no rah rah guys, no stupid end zone dances, just good clean-cut company men. B.Pollian qoute"nobody wants to play the Dolphins after October" I agree with him !! This team will be a serious SB contender from 2014 on. Building great depth in the front line and secondary on defense !! Deep at QB and TE on offense, must draft OL next season then they'll be hunting for a SB title for years to come !!

It Hec from MA!
Yes there are Dolphins fans here too! Getting excited... very minimal things to worry about!!

It's All On You Ryan Tannehill

I believe Chris Rock said don't believe when they say there is no sex in teh Champagne Room during his actual stand up. But in most places that would be correct. You are expected to take the extra currricular festivities elsewhere.

And Oscar, given Tannehill's good practice again today .. yeah it's a given.

I'm not one to usually worry about this stuff but if Egnew is cut, he'll be a Patriot the next day and Brady will make him a all pro.

Taiwan Jones. Where is Taiwan Jones?

He doesn't get happy when he makes it. He doesn't get sad when he misses it. The Perfect Kicker.

"Philbin said. "Mike Egnew has improved an awful lot. He's a guy we're excited about."

Egnew had to improve "an awful lot" just not to be "awful" any more.....

"Olivier Vernon has taken a step forward. Jonathan Martin, Lamar Miller."

"Taken a step forward" suggest to me that these guys are pretty much right where they're expcted to be as 2nd yr players. But, it will take the regular season to declare whether these players have "ARRIVED" yet.

"Josh Kaddu is another that last year at this time was feeling his way through, has made a lot of progress."

"Feeling his way thru," suggest to me, he was "a mild disappointment" last season in terms of totally what was expected last season. Just maybe not on the scale of Egnew's 2012.

"Egnew might sneak in as a back-of-the roster guy because offensive coordinator Mike Sherman loves having the flexibility of having a jillion tight ends."

Depending on the 4th wr situation, if none they have presently pan out and there's nothing they like on the waiver wire, he could also "sneak in" as a "possession-type 4th big wr".

Anything's possible.......




Hate on Tannehill.

Seriously. Talk about fishing for controversy.

Ever thought that he answered the Most Improve comment with telling you these guys are developing into major contributors. T-Hill wasn't on that list because he is already a Major part of the Team. Second, Philbin isn't going to go down the WHOLE LIST OF PLAYERS. In that case T-Hill sucked, D.Thomas Sucked, Sturgis Sucked, D.Sims Sucked, Shelby Sucked, and everyone else he didn't mention just had an awful off season.

Philbin knows you watch the practice. He wasn't pointing out the obvious. But then again, just like some of the TROLLS here. You have to be Super Specific when talking to you.

My vote for most improved from last year


This will be a very good playoff team this year, may not get to the SB, but anything can happen once in the playoffs. I beleive the defense will be a top 3 unit, the front 7 is as good as anybody in the the league which makes the db's much better anybody who knows football knows that. Once the O line gets settled and gelled { God forbid anymore injuries } they will be good enough to have a top 12 offense. All things depend on injuries to top line players and depth. PS they are going to be very careful with Dion Jordan so please no "BUST" comments that's just stupid.

Applewhite is just a camp body. To think the guy will make the roster is Asinine.

But I forgot, since Philbin didn't mention DJ as most improve that must mean he wants to cut him.

As an aside, notice that list of names Philbin mentioned includes just about every second-year player except quarterback Ryan Tannehill. It's probably just an omission. But it bears mention just in case it is not an omission because Sherman this offseason predicted Tannehill would be the "most improved" quarterback in the entire NFL.

Even Tannehill's nfl critics admit coming in with the limited number of college starts, he did far better than expected, his rookie season.

He has had a few hiccups in the 1st 2 preseason games, and only 1 horrible camp day. But, the Texans game should show progress, as far as his preseason performances go. But, we shall see....

Rdubs,seems like youve had your fun on lobstertube the last couple of days

He didn't mention Wallace, Hartline, Jones, Wake, Pouncey, Odrick, Grimes, so we're doomed !!!!!

And also you select few expecting players to get hurt need to stop.

Yes, it is good to have Depth. But to say you need the Depth cause so and so will get hurt shows your own insecurity with your fandom of the team. You are afraid everything will go right. Negative Nancy's. Give it a break. It gets nauseating reading some of you cry over and over. What if J.Martin gets hurt what do we do? What if DJ never recovers?

Seriously, do the select few ever have a Positive thought in your head? Everyday Hate Hate Hate.

actually I prefer other sites. I think Oscar mentioned it and it kinda stuck. I like to beat a dead horse or in this case beat my meat!! LOL

Applewhite is just a camp body. To think the guy will make the roster is Asinine.

But I forgot, since Philbin didn't mention DJ as most improve that must mean he wants to cut him.

Posted by: Dashi | August 15, 2013 at 01:21 PM

First of all, this is Applewhite's 7th as an nfl "NOMAD", so this maybe "all or nothing as far as where his career heads from here. Probably his last chance to land on an nfl roster. That's why I wouldn't just pre-write him off just yet.

2ndly, it's Dion Jordan's 1st camp and he hasn't played a meaningful snap yet. So, wth, would Philbin mention him as "most improved"?

Wasn't he also drafted #3 overall? I hope no coach has to ever mention his #3 overall pick as "most improved". That doesn't sound like a good thing unless he has 10 sacks ne season then 20 sacks the next.

Please cut Egnew! He should not be taking up a roster spot.

Good observation Armando....

Sometimes its what's NOT said that speaks the loudest....

I am not privy to practice...but in watching Tanne @ game speed....he leaves a lot to be desired @ this point...

Also...lover the comments from Vernon....if that were Smith...Davis or Dansby...they would be telling us how they are "The best in the buisness".....I like his demeanor as well...

Sturgis...hitting a 58 yarder like its his job...not an event that will happen on occasion....whats not to like about that....

Its those types of players (attitudes) that have helped the PATS dominate for more than a decade (along with Brady)....

Maybe now...with the RIGHT COACH (eff Fisher)...its our turn....

Taiwan Jones, an Armando Favourite ...

Lobstertube for MVP!

I like players who dance after the score a TD, its fun, who once to see a player just hand the ball to the refs. Deion Sanders, Micheal Irvin these guys were showboaters and playmakers its fun

Our TEs can line up wide. So having 6 WRs isn't a necessity. Then you add that L.Miller and Thigpen can also line up as WRs. And Bam!! Carrying 4 WRs is all you need.

Everyone and their Momma knows Clay is the FB. Heck, I was saying that Clay should be the FB since the start of the Off season. And Philbin has been using Clay as a FB since last season. If you ever watch the game. Never mind Clay wears #42.

(Expect someone to post as Dashi's Mom, So Original)

Folk's, "MOST IMPROVED" basically means that player had "GREAT ROOM" for improvement anyway. It means that players was never quite living up to what was expected in the beginning.

It can also mean the player is closer to where they want them to be, while still being less than 85% of where they are expected to be.

In Egnew's case he could be 60% there, when last season he may have been 30% there. Most improved can still mean player still has quite a ways to go. So, don't be fooled on "most improved" alone.

You can only go by what you see during the regular season...

I would love Patterson to high step to the endzone if he picks and go for 6.

Why Applewhite won't make the team.


And DJ when he gets back. The Fins have enough depth at DT that if Vernon and Shelby aren't cutting it they can move Odrick back to DE for a Short time.

Common Sense.

In the regular season, the best players will get the most playing time. Let this, and this alone, be your guide.

Common Sense is a different poster. Watch the copyright infiringement, Dashi!


Im sorry I even made a rely to your Applewhite post. until he actually does something, he isn't worth posting about, good or bad.

So, please, can the Applewhite posts end until he actually does something good or bad worth posting?


I wonder if Matthews make this team. He looked real good early then got hurt. I think the kid has nice talent. I would want to hold on to him, but it seems there may be no room.

And Celebrating and being an even keel player are 2 Different things.

Of course any coach worth his weight doesn't want his Kicker Celebrating. That position needs a guy with that demeanor.

But Philbin isn't going to complain when someone does a Pee-Wee Herman Dance. Or when Wake does his Hulk Impression. Football is a game of emotion sometime and players need to act out.

What Philbin wants(which he has said a million times) are football players, that are smart, and put the team first.

Mando and Omar have to be the biggest Tanny haters around. Did anyone else catch Mando saying since Brady is healthy, the Dolphins are playing for second in the AFC East? Can't wait until he is wrong.

Also, Taiwan Jones? lol

Applewhite is just a camp body. Wake, Vernon, DJ, and Shelby have us set at DE.

I think Egnew makes the 53. Just too much potential and too much of a unique skill set. I think his salary is only 500k this year and 300k is guaranteed, so he is dirt cheap to keep.

Looking forward to seeing a quarter and a half or more against the Texans and then hopefully a good showing in the regular season tuneup game against the Bucs.

As long as we're at it, can YG stop posting until he types something worth posting???


I used Common Sense and Just Saying. Til someone started trolling it. No worries because the people using those names usually stick to football.

Now watch someone say, Dashi uses other names. Yes, I do, and I let people know it is me when I do. (Being Super Specific for my friend)

Dashi, I was just joking around. Trying to be clever but it may not work since I was at the Black Sabbath concert yesterday and I'm running on fumes here...

Kris and Mark,

I left you a post on the last blog. Too hard for me to copy and paste on my IPad. Hope you get a chance to respond.

Bye for now....off for some scotch tastings....


From Earlier,

You can have sex in almost any Champagne Room. It just depends how much money you have and who is your dancer. They don't call it the Boom Boom Room for nothing.

Now don't just ask them for it. Wait til she ask and tells you what is going to go down and which bottle to pay for, for which service you want.

Tannehill hasnt improved? YIKES!

mmmm Scotch...

Scotchy scotchy scotch ... I love scotch

Very, very immature posters here who consider themselves as "responsible adults". If that's what you consider yourself as then prove it by your action.

Mark In Toronto you know exactly who this post is to.

Also guys, there is a difference between hater and being objective. Armando is foremost objective. Seems some ere define objective as being a hater too....


My bad. Sometimes I forget people come on here and can make jokes. They don't second guess everything you say.

As someone likes to say I guess when it comes from one of us in our group we don't mean anything bad by it. I just haven't seen the list of the members in our group in a while.

Gabbert, not Henne, to start for Jags vs Jets.

So for the 2nd year in a row the Jags lied to Henne. They told him there would be an open competition and there isn't.

Last year gabbert started 10 games and put up 1700 yds (170 yds/game). Henne started 6 and put up 2100 yards (>300 yds/game). In fact in his last 10 starts Henne has put up 3000 yds and 15 TDs.

I know I know: Henne puts up lots of useless yards. I agree but what makes them useless is that he plays for the shhtyist defense in the league.

It's a good thing for Henne that the Jags are paying $9mil total for last season and this one.

Gabbert > Henne > Tannehill

If "OBJECTIVITY" offends any of you guys, you can always go to www.miamidolphins.com.

You'll always find the reading to your delight there. It's the biggest and greatest "HOMEROTIC DOLPHINS SITE" in existence on the internet today.

Every year, always how great the state of the Dolphins are, every year failing to make the playoffs.

Just the way you HOMEROTICS like it. Some of fans actually like winning games, making playoffs, and competing for championships. So do some of the our Dolphins coverage sports reporters......

Just saying......homerotics........capiche?


Read armando's Tweets from yesterday.

Straight Hate.

Look at Mando's Last 10 Post on this Blog. Look at the Ratio. 10 to 0. Not 1 had something Positive. He has only written 1 positive review since coming back from Fantasy Fest. Mando driving his Red Corvette and Monkey Boy with his Red S2000.

Heck, A.Beasley wrote an article about Hatgate and he made Pounce look like a Leader. Very Objective.

Look at the Tweets from A.Beasley and Look at Mando's Tweets. Heck, he even hates with that. Doesn't Beasley work the same section? Why can't we read his tweets along with mando's on this page. Just Saying.


As the leading authority in everything Manly. Is a S2000 a Manly Car.

YG, ur too darn easy to manipulate. I move you around like a pawn on a chessboard, man.

Jump YG jump! Good dog!!!

I read Armando's tweets. After you said the same things in the last blog. I find them objective at worst.

Just because some of you guys don't want to be objective about this team, doesn't make anyone who does, a hater. A hater never has anything to good to say about that which he hates, and never will claim to be a part of that in which he hates.

Dashi, you mean the CJ group?? YG can produce that ...

CJ AKA, people who actually come here to discuss football in a rational manner

YG, ur too darn easy to manipulate. I move you around like a pawn on a chessboard, man.

Jump YG jump! Good dog!!!

Posted by: Mark in Toronto | August 15, 2013 at 02:20 PM

The blog must applaud you on your great maturity. WOW..........

1 2 3 4 5 »

The comments to this entry are closed.