The Dolphins opened up Training Camp early Thursday morning at the Doctors Hospital Facility in Davie, and there was a different level of excitement and confidence that permeated from the owner, coaching staff and players.
The team started the workout in the bubble. At the end of the 30-minute walk thru, Head Coach Joe Philbin spoke to the team and set the stage for Dolphins owner Stephen Ross to say a few words. Part of Ross’s message addressed how he could feel the excitement from the players and the coaches, but also expressed that his main job is to put this team in a position to win. After the talk, the team went straight out from the bubble to the grass fields and continued practice in the humidity of the South Florida.
Here are some other takeaway’s from today’s practice:
1) Great Flow To Open Training Camp – This football team found a way to carry the momentum that was developed in the off-season, OTA’s and minicamp, and build upon it in day one of training camp. Players were focused and executed at a very high level and the coaches demanded excellence in every drill, just the way we would expect in the NFL. The team worked on all phases from extra points and field goals to 11-on-11 team drills and extended individual periods. The tone for training camp was set and I believe today was simply the extension of a foundation started this offseason.
2) Instant Chemistry Between Quarterbacks and Wide Receivers – Quarterback Ryan Tannehill had terrific individual numbers last season and showed steady improvement from the year before. In 2015, he will have a chance to continue the trend and win more game while increasing the point production because of the talent around him. Today, the wide receiving group made it look easy, almost rehearsed at times, because they played with great timing, accuracy and consistency when running routes. Quarterbacks were able to play with anticipation, throwing to spots knowing and trusting the guy on the other end was doing his job. This will be fun to watch throughout camp and into the pre-season as we gauge and monitor their progress.
3) Preston Impressive – If I had to pick one player that was most impressive today, it was receiver Michael Preston. Preston made multiple receptions in the practice, including a diving catch from Matt Moore on a deep go route. The rookie receiver extended his arms, leaping to make an incredible play. At 6’5 220 pounds, Preston looks much like first round draft choice DeVante Parker, and if he can find a way to play with consistency, could challenge players like Rishard Matthews and Matt Hazel for the fifth receiving spot.
Other Notes From Today’s Practice:
– Lots of positional rotation at offensive guard between Dallas Thomas, Billy Turner, Jeff Linkenbach and rookie Jamil Douglas. I would look for that pattern to continue, especially when the pads come on this Saturday.
– The same could be said about the linebacker position, but today saw no change with Koa Misi at MLB, and Jelani Jenkins and Chris McCain starting on the outside. Behind them was Kelvin Sheppard in the middle, and Spencer Paysinger and Jordan Tripp flanking him.
– The lone turnover today was produced by rookie defensive back Bobby McCain. The rookie from Memphis stepped in front of a Josh Freeman pass down the seam for the interception.
– Pro Bowl offensive tackle Branden Albert participated in the 30-minute walk thru and that was all that was expected out of the eight year veteran. Others players didn’t participate were tight end Gerell Robinson, safety Don Jones and wide out DeVante Parker.
– Placekicker Caleb Sturgis returned to practice today and was two of four in his live attempts, good from 41 and 46 yards, and missing twice from 44 yards out.
RELATED: Philbin Speaks After Practice #1
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