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Dolphins bring in Sims-Walker, Stallworth and a quarterback; preseason postscripts

Postscripts and reaction to the Dolphins’ 30-13 loss to the Dallas Cowboys on Wednesday night:

### THURSDAY MORNING UPDATE: The Dolphins, eager to add one or two receivers in the next few days, intensified their search by booking a Thursday workout with veteran Donte Stallworth, according to a league source. They also are strongly considering Jabar Gaffney, though he will not be part of a group that's working out today. Stallworth and Gaffney both are 31, both played for the Redskins last season and both were cut by the Patriots this week.

Stallworth caught 22 passes for 309 yards for Washington last season. Stallworth has played for six teams and has 320 receptions in nine NFL seasons.

Gaffney caught 68 passes for 947 yards and five touchdowns for the Redskins last season. He opened Patriots camp with the first team but has been sidelined since a right quadriceps injury Aug. 16.

The Dolphins also will consider plucking a receiver or two off waivers in the next two days.

On Thursday - as first reported by Sirius XM Radio's Howard Balzer - Miami also worked out Mike Sims-Walker, who had 63 catches for Jacksonville in 2009 and 43 in 2010 but just 12 in six games for Rams and Jaguars last season. A third-round pick in 2007, Walker spent part of last season on injured reserve with a knee injury. He has not been in an NFL camp this summer.

Receiver Brian Tymes, undrafted out of Florida A&M this year, also auditioned. He had two catches for 18 yards for the 49ers in a preseason game before being released.

Also today, Miami will work out quarterback Matt Blanchard, who was cut by the Bears. He led Wisconsin-Whitewater to three Division III national championships and led the Bears on two scoring drives in preseason. David Garrard, off knee surgery, is awaiting word on whether Miami will release him via an injury settlement. That's a good possibility unless the Dolphins opt to trade Matt Moore.

Garrard tweeted Thursday: "Great day of workouts today... some field work and throwing...."

As for last night's game....

### Joe Philbin was upset afterward: "This is a disappointing loss. I told the team I don't care if this was the fourth preseason game, seventh regular season game or the Super Bowl, that's unacceptable. Poorly coached game. We didn't tackle well. Not a good game. Not a good performance by our team. I'm the head coach. Poor job by me getting us ready.

"Guys didn't play well. We've got a lot of improving to do. We haven't scored enough touchdowns. Am I concerned? Yes. I thought we've been a good team in practice. We haven't transferred it to the game. We're going to get back to work on Friday and we're going to fix it."

Philbin said he wouldn't "necessarily" be surprised if a good number of players are added in the coming days.

### Ryan Tannehill was sharp, completing 5 of 7 passes for 35 yards in two series of work.  And, by the way, the two incompletions weren’t his fault. One was a third-down drop by Legedu Naanee, who continues to underwhelm, and the other was an incomplete fade to Naanee in the end zone which should have been a pass interference call against Dallas.

"Ryan did OK," Philbin said. "The more times Ryan gets to go through this whole process - the warmup, playing the game, we felt it was important to him. He's not really at the stage where you want to rest a guy."

### ESPN's Eric Mangini, the former Browns coach, said of Tannehill: "Tonight, he did a really good job. He completed passes against multiple different defenses. That's what you saw from Andy Dalton last preseason." Merril Hoge praised him but said: "You still have to hide him and protect him."

### Matt Moore (4 for 12, 49 yards) had another poor night, including throwing an interception that was returned 26 yards for a touchdown by Orie Lemon. He was frequently under heavy pressure. Pat Devlin closed 7 for 12 for 63 yards.

### With Davone Bess and Brian Hartline out, Rishard Matthews (3 catches, 47 yards) and Marlon Moore (2 for 19) had the best night of the receivers. Matthews made a nifty catch while falling down, and Joe Rose – on the radio broadcast – predicted the seventh-round rookie “is going to be on this team.”

Moore, who started the game opposite Naanee, ran sharp routes and also forced a Cowboys fumble on special teams. B.J. Cunningham (2 for 23) also looked good.

The other receivers? Roberto Wallace had a false-start penalty and didn’t make a catch for the second consecutive game; despite a strong start to camp, he hasn’t done enough to justify a roster spot. Jeff Fuller (one catch, six yards) had a holding penalty. Clyde Gates had one catch for seven yards. Chris Hogan was targeted a few times but did not make a catch. 

Naanee (2 catches, 19 yards) was criticized for one of those two catches, with CBS-4's Nat Moore noting that he too often catches the ball with his body and not his hands.

### Quinten Lawrence seemingly squandered his chance to grab hold of the No. 4 cornerback job, and potentially, a roster spot. He was called for two pass-interference penalties (including a 43-yarder while unsuccessfullly covering Kevin Ogletree) and was beaten on a few other plays. Lawrence’s poor work means the Dolphins likely need to add two cornerbacks, not one.

And remember, Dolphins defensive backs were competing against backup receivers and the Cowboys' third- and fourth-string quarterbacks.

### And what about Nolan Carroll, who was elevated to the No. 3 cornerback job with Vontae Davis’ departure? Carroll started well Wednesday, knocking away a pass in the end zone and making another good play on the ball. But he was beaten by fringe receiver Andre Holmes for a 32-yard catch and was called for 14-yard pass interference penalty against fringe receiver Tim Benford.

### Starting cornerback Richard Marshall, during his cameo, was called for a horse-collar penalty and allowed a completion to Ogletree that was negated by a Cowboys holding penalty.

### The defense, which used backups most of the night, continued to be deficient in offering run support on plays that bounced outside. The Cowboys ran for 238 yards in an embarrassing display of run defense. Jonathan Freeny, Kevyn Scott and Anderson Russell all looked helpless on Lance Dunbar’s 58-yard TD run.

### Ray Feinga, starting at left tackle in Jake Long’s absence, allowed Victor Butler to easily run around him for a sack. Later, left tackle Andrew McDonald also allowed a sack. Jonathan Martin started at right tackle for the fourth straight game but also got some work at left tackle.

John Jerry played most of the night and had some good moments at right guard. Philbin called the play of the offensive line "average" and was troubled by breakdowns in pass protection.

### Running back Marcus Thigpen handled all returns and got a lot of work at receiver, leading to speculation on the broadcast that he has made the team. But his production was marginal; his four kickoff returns averaged 24 yards. He had one rush for three yards and one catch for seven yards.

### Daniel Thomas (5 carries, 31 yards), Lamar Miller (17 for 60) and Steve Slaton (4 for 22) all ran well. "He's making progress, running the ball more physical," Philbin said of Thomas. "He's doing a good job in pass protection." Reggie Bush got the night off. Jorvorskie Lane (one catch, 12 yards) had a good night at fullback.

### Kheeston Randall had a sack and Olivier Vernon and Jamaal Westerman combined on another sack.

### The only other times Miami finished 0-4 in preseason, they finished with regular-season records of 3-11 (1966) and 8-8 (1989).

### On the TV broadcast, Bob Griese encouraged the Dolphins to trade the second-rounder acquired in the Davis trade. “You don’t need draft picks; you need receivers and offensive linemen," Griese said.

   

Comments

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Juan Varona

Looks like Miami will continue to flirt with defeated seasons.

Dicky Jones

Jesus Christ.
This team is pathetic.
Bring in TERREL OWENS at this point.

Gary

Hard knocks has confirmed what we already knew... Jeff Ireland is incompetent. A
A moron.

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