Miami Dolphins head coach Joe Philbin spoke with the media Sunday afternoon after the first day of training camp.
(Opening Statement) –“First of all I think it was outstanding for us to get out on the practice field. As a coaching staff, we were very excited to get the opportunity to work with the players. The players were excited. (Athletic Trainer) Kevin O’Neill told me, it’s the fastest the players have ever been outside the training room in morning since he has been here. We had a great turnout by our fans. Overall the first practice went very well.”
(On how much different it was last year in first year to having everything in place) –“You never assume anything. We took time as a coaching staff to go over how we are going to teach blocking, how we are going to teach tackling, how we are going to pursue (in situations), just the basic fundamentals. We spent a lot of time on (it) as a staff and spent a lot of time with the team yesterday. You never assume anything. Obviously you are a little more comfortable, but it is football practice. A lot of things can happen.”
(On how long it will take to know what to expect from the new faces) –“We had excellent attendance in the offseason (program). We have a good feel for these guys, but the big thing is when we get the pads on we will know a little bit more. That’s the next step in our evaluation as we go forward. That will be coming soon.”
(On the Dion Jordan status) –“He is on NFI (Non-Football Injury) at this point of time, and that is all I will say in regard to him.”
(On being on year two and the excitement having players you really want) – “It’s a good group of men. There is a lot of enthusiasm when we got back in the offices as a coaching staff and the first opportunity we got to get on the field with these guys. We still have a long way to go, as we know, but there are some good pieces to work with. These guys have worked awfully hard and came back in excellent shape. It’s the start of the process. As I told the team on the field a few minutes ago, this is the beginning. Now we ‘ve got to go in, watch the practice tape, make corrections, have a walkthrough and start the cycle again as we move forward.”
(On the added talk about the team on who it added and if there is added pressure because of it) – “Not at all. I don’t think so. We prepared the same when it was our first training camp practice of 2012, the same thing today, and tomorrow’s practice is very important as are the succeeding ones. We want to have our guys and build a consistent program here. We want to be as consistent as a staff as well.”
(On what he sees as a big advantage of starting training camp a week early) – “When we thought about this organizationally back in the last offseason, we knew we might have some transition from our own roster. We had a number of free agents. We thought it was a possibility we would be involved in the free agency market as well. We knew we had nine draft picks at that time. We had a backup quarterback that was a free agent, so we were looking at having two very young quarterbacks who weren’t in the system. For all of those reasons, we felt like it made sense to pursue this game.”
(On looking at the new players in the passing game and what they did with their previous teams and incorporating that) – “We looked very closely. We charted their catches, where they caught the ball, what location, how deep it was, was it outside of the numbers or inside the numbers. We looked at all of that. We studied. We had research projects going on in the offseason. We looked at a variety of different teams, not just maybe teams we acquired players from, a bunch of different teams of teams who are doing things extremely well. We like to steal from the best if we can.”
(On how Ryan Tannehill threw the ball) – “I was actually over on the other field for the vast majority of the time during those team periods. I was over here obviously for the last one, so I’m going to have to watch the tape on that.”
(On what he is hoping to see from Lamar Miller and Daniel Thomas) – “Well in our offense, the running back position is a position that requires a lot of different skill set. Obviously there is the running portion of it, there’s the pass receiving portion of it, the blocking and obviously the most important thing, the thing we started off the team meeting with yesterday, you guys know the emphasis we place on ball security and takeaways that we didn’t get right last year, and we have to do better. That also is a primary focus of our running backs is protecting the football.”
(On if there was a specific message for the team last night) – “We went over everything kind of to set the record straight meeting from A-Z, in terms of we had a lot of different presenters that did an excellent job. We talked in every facet, what the policy is in the locker room, what the policy is in the weight room, what the policy is in the training room, in the dining room, in the player lounge, how we handle community obligations, how we handle you (the media) friendly guys, and those type of things, we did a lot of different things, and covered things from A-Z.”
(On if he spoke with Mike Pouncey) – “I would tell you that any conversation that I may or may not have had with Mike will stay internal. I will tell you that it’s important for every member of this organization, player, coach, to represent the Miami Dolphins in a first class manner.”
(On the NFI and Dion Jordan, why was this decision) – “We felt that was the best option.”
(On how you start delving the message on being a winning program) – “One of the things we’re going to get to soon, is that we want to get off to a fast start. We have to get out of the gate better as a football team this year, there’s no question about it, that’s something we’re going to focus on, right now we’re in the instillation phase where we’re still teaching, we’ve tweaked some of the things we’ve saw and we did in the OTA’s and mandatory camp, and we haven’t added a lot or changed a lot but we’re still tinkering so to speak, and getting our systems into play in all phases, and as we move closer to playing a game and a performance, we’re going to talk in greater detail about what we have to do to get this thing turned around.”
(On how far behind Dion is, and if he is worried about the time that he has missed going into the season) – “No.”
(On if there is an emphasis on going over the top for offensive plays) – “We definitely have to have more explosive plays in the passing game there’s no question about it. We’ve have to limit them, and I sat in the defensive installation meeting last night, Kevin put up a statistic about limiting explosive passes. There was a number of factors, if you look at it statistically that we did well on defense, that certainly was not one of them. I’m going to say 27th I could be wrong, don’t quote me on that, so I probably shouldn’t have said that, but I was in the meeting. Then offensively…really in all areas, sometimes as you well know its decision making by the quarterback, sometimes its ball location, sometimes its fumbling, sometimes its offensive line sack fumble, I mean there’s a wide variety of giveaways that can occur in a ball game and we have to do a better job. To get our program turned around, that’s the number one focus for us on both sides of the ball, that will help our won/loss record more than any play design we can come up with or anything like that.”
(On how it feels to have all rookies in camp) – “It’s great to have everybody here and working and learning at the same pace, so now you don’t have to accelerate one guy, he missed that meeting, he missed this portion of things, you want everyone on the same page as we move forward.
(On if he feels any rookies will contribute significantly) – “Absolutely, it’s too early to tell, in terms of, again we haven’t seen these guys in pads, but certainly I’m not opposed to any of these guys contributing if they earn the spot and playing time. But I would be surprised if we didn’t have guys contributing.”
(On how much more confident he is with Ryan Tannehill) – “I think the 1,000 repetitions roughly that he had or so that he had last year are going to be a big benefit to him as he moves forward as a player. Its one thing for us to sit in the meeting room and tell him about NFL coverage’s and NFL blitzes and the disguises and those type of things. It’s another for a player to get out there and really do it in a game. So he’s got that bank of information, he’s worked extremely hard, and we’re excited about seeing him make progress this year.
(On advising newcomers the cloud cover will not always be there for weather) – “Yeah, I went up to Massachusetts to see my parents and it was smoking (very warm) up there, so I mean, they’re probably going to get some heat I’m sure at some point”
Source: Miami Dolphins Media