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June 18, 2014

Wednesday night report: News, notes, observations from Day 2 of Dolphins minicamp

Snippets from Day 2 of the Dolphins’ three-day minicamp:

### The offense was much better today than Tuesday, including (we kid not) a few deep balls that were actually completed!: a 30-yarder on the sideline, from Ryan Tannehill to Armon Binns, who made a leaping catch despite solid coverage from Jamar Taylor; and another long throw from Matt Moore to Brian Hartline.

Tannehill threw a pick (off a deflection) to Cam Wake and another to Reshad Jones after a referee whistle but also tossed two darts for touchdowns –-- one to Mike Wallace in the corner of the end zone and a 12-yarder to Michael Egnew. Tannehill also threw a beautiful strike to Charles Clay between Jalil Brown and Don Jones.

“Lot better today,” Tannehill told the team-controlled Finsiders radio show. “Still not perfect. We had a lot less mental errors. It’s exciting to see the progression from yesterday.”

### Tannehill, on new offensive coordinator Bill Lazor: “He’s very precise. He wants everything exactly like he talked about. That gives me comfort.... That accountability is raised.”

### Tannehill likes the amount of pre-snap motion in the offense: “It’s been great. Just the difference from last year, moving guys around, is huge. Just being comfortable with moving, shifting tight ends and backs. It’s challenging. But it’s going to create a lot of mismatches on offense. We’re going to put people in positions they don’t want to be on defense, get the ball to our playmakers all over the field.”

### Encouraging: Eight months after a major injury, Brandon Gibson said his knee is fine, and Tannehill noted Gibson “is moving well, but still not 100 percent.”

### The Dolphins are making considerable use of running backs in the passing game, and Daniel Thomas was particularly impressive in that regard today.

“Our backs are going to line out and catch balls,” Tannehill said. “When you have [backs] who have good hands and can make people miss, it adds a whole other dimension to your offense."

### For those hoping Dion Jordan will take playing time away from Derrick Shelby, be advised of these comments from Philbin, who really likes Shelby:

“The thing about Shelby is you watch him on film and the cut ups at the end of the season and then you probably gain a better appreciation for him than you do during the year,” Philbin said. “He’s very, very disciplined. He really carries out his assignments and his technique well. He’s smart. He’s in the right spot. So he’s made a nice contribution over these couple of years. I’m excited about what he can do for us this year as well.”

### With Koa Misi given a break from team drills today, Jelani Jenkins got extensive work with the starters. “He picks things up quickly,” Philbin said. “I noticed him today.”

### Dannell Ellerbe, who played middle linebacker with Misi out of team drills, continues to have problems in pass coverage.

### Philbin pointed to Jamar Taylor and Dallas Thomas as young players that have emerged.

### Knowshon Moreno again sat out most of team drills for reasons Philbin has declined to explain. But Philbin has praised Moreno both days, so he’s not in the doghouse per se.

### Philbin, on newcomers Shelley Smith (the starting right guard) and defensive tackle Earl Mitchell: “Shelley, he’s kind of a guy that doesn’t make a lot of noise, real hard worker, very strong guy and he’s done well. Earl --- I love the way he works. He shows up on pursuit on plays away from him. He’s hustling to the ball. He would probably be one of those guys that you might classify as a quiet leader. Really pleased with him.”

### Caleb Sturgis, plagued by inconsistency last year, has been less erratic this year. He nailed a field goal from just over 50 yards today.

### Rookie receiver Matt Hazel continues to do a good job getting open. Meanwhile, ex-Titans receiver Damian Williams dropped a pass and hasn’t distinguished himself.

### Walt Aikens finally made a play today (breaking up a pass to Binns) and Jimmy Wilson batted down a Tannehill pass. Wilson is clearly the first-team nickel corner. Aikens, by the way, again got some work at both safety and cornerback.

Twitter: @flasportsbuzz