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Day 13 Notebook: Wednesday Night Lights Satisfies Big Crowd

Posted Aug 8, 2012

How appropriate it was that the first official practice held at the Doctors Hospital Training Facility at Nova Southeastern University was under the lights in front of the biggest crowd of training camp. Read more news and notes here

##A little more than an hour after the new name of the Miami Dolphins’ training facility was unveiled, the team left the practice bubble and headed outside for the first evening practice. Waiting for the players was a crowd in excess of 2,000, easily the largest one in Davie since camp opened on July 27th, and the energy on the field reflected that of the fans.

##But before the open portion of practice took place there was some fun indoors, like punter Brandon Fields hitting the roof of the bubble three times during punting drills. Prior to that, the veterans had fun with the rookies running the gauntlet while trying not to get stripped of the ball by holding them up when they could. Even the offensive linemen got into the act.

##Rookie quarterback Ryan Tannehill did a nice job of handling a high shotgun snap from center Mike Pouncey and handing the ball off to running back Steve Slaton on a sweep to the left. Mishandled snaps and fumbles had been an issue earlier in the week, so Tannehill got a good grade on that one.

##Davone Bess made a nice catch over the middle on a perfectly thrown pass from David Garrard shortly before the inside portion practice came to an end.

##Early on in 1-on-1 drills outside, Chad Johnson brought the crowd to its feet by faking out cornerback Sean Smith on an out-and-up move. He caught the pass with ease while a frustrated Smith could only watch.

##Wide receiver Chris Hogan made his presence known with a number of difficult catches of varying length – deep balls, over the middle and near the sideline. He is fighting for one of the last receiver spots.

##Undrafted rookie tight end Les Brown bounced back after having some of his rougher sessions shown on Hard Knocks with two touchdown catches late in practice – one from Pat Devlin and one from Ryan Tannehill.

##Rookie defensive end Derrick Shelby got a lot of work with the first-team unit on both sides of the line, going against fellow rookie right tackle Jonathan Martin when he lined up on his side and against Pro Bowl left tackle Jake Long. He held his own, getting a sack and inducing a holding penalty.

##Even though the temperatures were cooler, things heated up late between offensive lineman Nate Garner and linebacker Kevin Burnett as the two got into a shoving match. Garner lost his helmet in the melee.

##By night’s end, Devlin had seemingly performed the best of the quarterbacks. He shines under the lights and connected on passes of all distances, deep, short and middle.

 ##Finally, the competitive nature of some of the players came out as Johnson angrily kicked a ball after a dropped pass, cornerback Vontae Davis put a little extra muscle into some of his hits in the secondary and tight end Anthony Fasano showed off his punting skills after catching a touchdown pass by kicking the ball into the air.

##Head Coach Joe Philbin will put the team through one more practice tomorrow that is closed to the public and the media, and then it’s time for the first preseason game on Friday night against Tampa Bay.

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