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First day of offseason workout in the books

The typepad platform that supports this blog has been down for a couple of days and has been having trouble all the way back to Friday. As it now lends itself to updating, here we go:

The Dolphins began their 2014 offseason workout program on Monday. Only one player of note did not attend -- wide receiver Mike Wallace. I am told Wallace will be part of the program in the coming days, perhaps as early as Tuesday.

And that's good because, frankly, one of the areas quarterback Ryan Tannehill and the offense must improve in 2014 is the deep ball, particularly to Wallace who is the team's most explosive and dynamic deep ball receiver.

Any Dolphins observer paying attention in 2013 knows Wallace scored only five touchdowns but might have had two or even three times that many scores if the number of deep passes that went his way when he was open behind defenses had been on target.

They mostly were not.

Tannehill is accepting responsibility for this issue. As he told the team's website (as in the past independent media was not allowed to speak to players at the start of offseason conditioning) the deep pass and accuracy has been a primary focus and he has been working on it.

That work, however, has not included Tannehill and Wallace on the same field playing pitch and catch -- doing things to improve their timing or chemistry or anything else. Wallace has spent much of his time since the end of the season in Houston with his family. Tannehill has spent most of his time locally.

That doesn't mean the two aren't on the same page. "I love Mike," Tannehill said, "He's a great guy."

And it doesn't mean what is happening in the synching of this combo is unusual as many receivers and quarterbacks don't necessarily throw it around between February and April.

But it is clear Wallace and Tannehill have important work to do and that work should begin now so that there is no repeat of 2013's underachieving results.

Speaking of underachieving, last season the Dolphins did not get what anyone would expect from the No. 3 overall selection in the draft. Rookie Dion Jordan was at times an afterthought in the defensive game plan.

Part of that was Jordan missing much of the preseason because the team was managing his surgically repaired shoulder. Part of it was what seemed like a tough marriage of talents (Jordan seems suited for the 3-4 more than the 4-3) to Miami's defense.

The injury part of that must be worked out and defensive end Cameron Wake suggested in his interview with the Dolphins website that was happening. Wake told the website he had spoken with Jordan, who is taking part in his first offseason program with the team, and "he's ready to go with that wing," meaning his shoulder.

This means Jordan is telling teammates, including Wake, his shoulder iss healthy and ready for competition. That was never really the case in 2013.

So the bar of expectation that was set so high for Jordan last year might be actually something he can reach for now without it hurting his shoulder.

 

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