During Mark Duper‘s time in the NFL, prolific offenses were the norm down in Miami. Catching passes from a Hall Of Fame quarterback had something to do with that, as the combination of Dan Marino and the “Marks Brothers” – wide receivers Mark Duper and Mark Clayton – lit up unsuspecting defenses. Throughout “Super” Duper’s 11-year career with the team, the Dolphins ranked in the top five in total yards nine times, including leading the league in that category four times. They also were top five in passing touchdowns seven times, twice topping the league. So, Duper knows the signs of a productive offense when he sees one.
After hanging around Dolphins OTAs last week, Duper got a little bit of déjà vu when watching the 2014 Dolphins offense at work, and in an interview Greg Likens and John Congemi of The Finsiders, talked about the high standards he has for Miami’s new offense.
When he visited practice last week, Duper got his first look at the offense being installed by new offensive coordinator Bill Lazor, and he immediately liked what he saw. The explosiveness, the motion, the confusion created by the offense was something that intrigued him. He was a fan of the passion from the group, and believes that this could be the start of something great.
“I really like what I’ve seen, and I like the enthusiasm with the coaching staff. I like the enthusiasm of the players,” said Duper. “These guys have a sort of family communication, and I’m looking for great things from the Dolphins this year. They’ve bettered themselves on the line, they’ve picked up some great draft choices, and they’ve got a couple more receivers.”
Compared to last season’s roster, Duper noticed that the Dolphins are a whole lot deeper across the board on both sides of the ball, but specifically on offensive. Miami has more talent at every offensive skill position since Joe Philbin took over as head coach in 2012, giving Lazor and quarterback Ryan Tannehill a talented arsenal at their disposal.
“He’s going to have weapons on the outside, weapons on the inside, and weapons in the back with the running backs, and I think he’s planning on using every last weapon that he has,” said Duper. “The key to it is learning the offense, and I think if they learn that offense, and they pay attention and prepare and listen to the coaching staff, you’re going to see a lot of big plays and a lot of games won this year.”
And after his visit to Dolphins camp, Duper was given the opportunity to speak to the team by Philbin. He kept his message to the players short and sweet.
“I told them that this game is not hard,” said Duper. “This game is easy. Basically what you do is prepare yourself as much as you can, and listen to what the coaching staff has to tell you. It’s kind of obvious that the coaching staff wants to win just as much as you. They’re going to put you in a good situation…Whatever play the coaching staff puts out there for you, make it work. Do your best to make it work, and you guys are going to be alright.”
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