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Coyle: Defense has 'chance to do something special'

The Dolphins offense has a new coordinator, a new scheme, a new offensive line. It's a great day when there isn't a botched snap in practice -- and so far there has not been a practice day when there hasn't been at least one botched snap.

So with the division rival New England Patriots and Buffalo Bills the first two teams on regular-season schedule one might hope the Dolphins' defense can carry the day while the offense gets acclimated to 2014.

And that's fine because the defense apparently is ready for that assignment.

"We like the challenge," defensive coordinator Kevin Coyle said Wednesday. "We like the challenge of having a veteran group of guys who feel they can be among the league's top defenses. And if we execute we feel we can do that."

While the Miami offense is experimenting and shuffling players -- On Wednesday Nate Garner moved to starting center for part of practice, Dallas Thomas worked some at tackle and Billy Turner took first-team snaps at right guard -- the defense seems relatively set.

The starting unit in most every practice so far:

LE: Cameron Wake

DT: Earl Mitchell

DT: Randy Starks

RE: Olivier Vernon

WLB: Dannell Ellerbe

MLB: Koa Misi

SLB: Phillip Wheeler

CB: Cortland Finnegan

CB: Brent Grimes

S: Louis Delmas

S: Reshad Jones

Even Jimmy Wilson, who is competing at safety, is seemingly set as the starting nickel back.

A competition may develop at safety (Wilson/Delmas) or DT (Jared Odrick/Mitchell) or perhaps at CB (Jamar Taylor/Cortland Finnegan), but the above seems to be the group right now.

This group is building their core scheme that "we believe in," Coyle said, and trying to use players' strengths within the scheme.

"The core of what we do is in place," Coyle said.

So this group is simply refining rather than their offensive teammates who are defining.

And it shows on the field. Today, for example the last two plays of the team team period in practice, Cameron Wake had a sack and that was followed by a Cortland Finnegan interception.

"My instincts tell me the defense had the upper hand," coach Joe Philbin said of the entire practice in which the two-minute offense and defense was stressed.

As it should be. This defense should dominate the offense, particularly at this stage in training camp. But for that dominance to carry into the regular-season against opposing teams, Coyle realizes some things have to improve.

"Being more consistent in the run game and turnover issues," Coyle said. "If we can do that, we'll put ourselves in position to be difficult to move the ball against.

"If we keep building it, we have a chance to do something special."


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Looking forward to seeing the defense this year. Coyle is right, they could be something special. I just hope Coyle has improved his play calling a bit.

This is the second year under Coyle's system.

The NFL Network crew was raving about the D as well.

The only problem is that Coyle is nothing special, by any means, whatsoever.

I am also looking forward t the D, That being said, I pray they can get offf the field. I think our numbers were inflated on D last year. We could not stop anyone when we truly neded it.

Well I will bethe first to say I have my questions about Coyle's play calling. I hope Duffner coming in refreshes last years thought process.

Until you teach the linebackers to tackle they will only be average.

Coyle said the same thing last year.

I will believe it when I see it.

The Defense is Talented. His play calling is not.

This brings to light how egregious the argument on the last blog was.

The Fins had a Top 5 defense talent wise last season. But played like a Top 15 unit because of bad scheme. Playing bend but don't break at the end of Half's.

Heck, If Coyle did a better job at the end of half's the Fins could have went 10-6 last season.

I've been critical of Coyle, but it's hard to excel at the ends of halfs when the lousy offense can't give the D a rest.

Partly true Poizen. The points allowed by the defense was a pretty good stat. If the offense can score better than 26th in the NFL, maybe we can make a little leap to greener pastures.

Coyle will be HC when Philbin is fired.

Defense allowed way to many 3rd down conversions at the end of half's.

The question is can Coyle's D make up for the anemic offence.

Yeah, you are infatuated with the Dashi to the point of Delusion.

Doesn't matter how good defense is. You don't have a qb. 5-11 at best.

Coyle did a great job last year despite limited talent and an offence that couldn't get a 1st down to rest the defence.

Yep. Expect same thing again this year. Defense always on the field.

TannePuke's 3 n outs puts extreme pressure on our D.

Let's see if Coyle learns from his mistakes before we throw the towel in folks. We'll know pretty well first 2 weeks if he's a keeper or not.

Coyle has developed a SB caliber D if the offence would give them more than 1 minutes rest.

Has Jonathan Martin been tearing it up in San Fran? Working his way up the depth chart to 1st stringer?

J Martin will start for the SB caliber 49ers.

Tell that to
Joe Flacco
Jim McMahan
Jeff Hostetler
Mark Rypien
Trent Dildo
Brad Johnson

Coyle blows....

Also no mention of the top performer on defense in some camp days in Dion Jordan?


Dashi@ 1244. Agreed. Bring in all the talent available but if the coordinator cannot get the job done you cannot blame it on the players.

Coyle is the best coach we have, period

Coyle isn't even the best coach we have on the defense. Guy stinks. You know he stinks because the trolls back him up. he inherits a top 10 unit, gets a large infusion of cash and draft picks and turns them into the 21st best unit in the league.

Sheesh... guy should coach the Heat!

FckFace, you forgot Wilson last year.

The D is top 5. That is why there is no way this team is #31. If the O=line can be just adequate so we can run a little, we are in the playoffs.

Looks like we have some out of town Trolls. Spelling tells it all. Using a "C" is English from the other side of the ocean or if you studied there.

Or up NORTH!!!

He said the EXACT same thing about the D last year and they underachieved hardcore.


I wonder how many "Brotherhood" shirts are still floating around the locker room?

Ugh, Thomas is not a tackle in the NFL. What is Philbin's obsession with shuffling OF linemen all over the place every f#cking preseason camp? Thomas is a guard, he can be an above average one at that or he can be a horrible tackle who gets RT killed in a game. If this is about Turner looking good and maybe being the starting guard over Thomas then so be it but Thomas should then be getting reps as the second string GUARD. I have tried to be patient with Philbin and overlook his flat personality and seeming inability to know what is going on in his own locker room but if he can't stop moving offensive linemen around into positions they don't fit and never will fit then I can't wait for this season to blow up in his face and to move on to a coach who at least knows a f#cking NFL guard from a f#cking NFL tackle! You want another tackle on this team during camp? Cut one of your 8,000 starting caliber WR's and call McKinney and get him into camp. You want another center on this team? Cut Garner and get Solai into camp. This is not that difficult to figure out!

MIT, Do you really think our total lack of a run game did not affect the time of possession? The three and outs killed every stat for the defense.

If you take away 1 possession from the opposing team in every game last year, how much would it affect the defense's ranking?

Ryan Tannehill 32 pass tds, 11 ints, 5 rush tds, 4500 yards passing in 2014

What is difficult to figure out though, is when Solia made the move from NT/DT to C. LOL SMH


Sorry, you just can't go on a rant like that and drop that many F-bombs and then call Soliai a C...just hurts ya.

Sorry meant Satele not Solai.


EK, said so earlier today, biggest keys for this team ... even more than Tannehill's development are running the ball and stopping the run.

So yeah, I totally agree the team being unable to run the ball even adequately really killed the team.

72, Did you not read the part about the coaches getting on to the o-line? Do you think they might have made the changes to illustrate a point?

I think now is the time to put everyone in a position of opportunity to win a job.

Samoans are extremely well-endowed. American men look puny in comparison.

Missed last blog but yeah Mando, you can't get around talent or lack thereof. Call it hurry up or whatever but it's time tested. The only problem is, you have to have personnel to make it work. Same with zone blocking.

At least we now know who likes to take the Samoan D!

The front end and backend of the defense has a chance to be something special this season. But that's where it ends.

Name one proven lb that places fear into oc in this league? If any bad is to come from this defense this year, it's most likely to come in the form of this yet to be proven lb unit.

I hope that zone blocking does not require the same cohesion and familiarity from the o-line that the power game does.

It would seem that some genius would come up with a scheme that would allow plug and play from the o-line like they use on defense??????

I' far more concern abut the expansion team oline we'll be putting on the playing field his season. 5 new starters equal expansion team oline. Sorry dolfans.

And as far as the D goes, talent is there but the weak link is Coyle. Hopefully whoever is calling plays on the field will make up for Coyle.

In any case, the D will have to do it because O-line is in shambles...again.

I am concerned about the defense this year. They were terrible the last 2 games of last year (gave up way too many points in the freezing rain against Buffalo and made Geno Smith look good) and I see no improvement personnel wise. Delmas and Finnegan are injury prone and Jordan is suspended for 4 games. If anything, the run defense may be even worse with Soliai gone.

This oline could actually give up 58 sacks this season and still have far ore upside than 2013's oline. :) :) :) :)

"So yeah, I totally agree the team being unable to run the ball even adequately really killed the team."

Read more here: http://miamiherald.typepad.com/dolphins_in_depth/2014/07/coyle-defense-has-chance-to-do-something-special.html#storylink=cpy

Thanks for the insight Captain Obvious!

Everybody knows...zone is a lot more complicated. It's kinda like stunts defense does

There isn't any "scheme" that can hide a poor offensive line. It's simply a talent and/or cohesion issue and you may as well believe in pixie dust and magic wands if you think ANY defense can't take advantage of that.

Nothing that Philbin, Tannehill, or Lazor does will matter much until that line is an effective unit.

Some of you don't want to hear that---you want to believe in these magical, genius "schemes" that will somehow produce miracles but the simple truth is THEY DO NOT EXIST.

Miami's OL will get better over time. There is more potential than last year, clearly. But early on? You're kidding yourself if you think it won't be messy.

MassD the greatest depth is at d-line and cb. Doesn't truly matter that greatly if Finnegan or Delmas is injury prone. My greatest defensive concern is hands down the lb unit. That's where injury could hurt most with an already unproven starting corp to begin with.

Losing Delmas or Finnegan to injury are the very least of our defensive concerns.

zone is the most basic read defense. not that hard

Phins D was 18th in the NFL last year on 3rd Downs at 38.2%. That's got to improve this season!

Looks like it's amateur hour already. Kiddies, have fun! Focker out.

The D's front four is as good as any. LBs not so much, and secondary has alot of question marks apart from Grimes.

This o-line has lots of upside. The question is can we win until they gel?

Would anyone else on here love to see someone beat out Pouncy? His snaps were not that great either. Come on Smith!!!

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