NFL Combine Day 2: Philbin And Coyle Garnering Praise From Peers; Other Notes

Posted Feb 24, 2012

INDIANAPOLIS – Miami Dolphins Head Coach Joe Philbin got to do his own talking at the NFL Scouting Combine on Thursday so today it was time for his counterparts to weigh in on him and his staff.

As has been the trend all along since Philbin was hired back in January, nothing but good things are being said about him and his assistant coaches. Defensive coordinator Kevin Coyle was the beneficiary this time around thanks to his former head coach in Cincinnati, Marvin Lewis.

“I’ve known Kevin since probably about 1993 or 1994 when I was coaching with the Steelers and Kevin was one of those guys that would come in the morning and ask if he could watch tape when he was visiting from (Syracuse) or Maryland,” Lewis said. “I can’t remember where he was at the point, and he would come in and turn off the lights when he left. So he’s been a diligent football coach, very detailed guy and he’s getting an opportunity now to be a coordinator. He’s coordinated for a long time in college so I think he’ll do a fine job.”

Shortly before Lewis took the podium it was Green Bay Packers general manager Ted Thompson’s chance to reflect on the type of man and coach Philbin was during his time in Green Bay. Thompson began by echoing the sentiments of his current head coach Mike McCarthy.

“First and foremost he’s a good man and I think that’s really important,” Thompson said. “But he’s a good football guy, he understands people, he’s a good evaluator and obviously he’s a good scheme guy and football guy. I thought he worked very well for us and I think he’ll do a really good job (in Miami). I think it was a good hire.”

There’s nothing like getting positive endorsements from your former employers and peers and Philbin and Coyle have established that kind of reputation.

POUNCEY GLAD TO BE ON THE OTHER SIDE: One year ago this week Dolphins center Mike Pouncey was fielding the endless questions from the media and going through the drills and medical evaluations. His relaxed smile early this morning before the noise picked up at Lucas Oil Stadium was proof that he was happy to be on the other side of the fence.

Pouncey was walking the corridor with twin brother Maurkice of the Pittsburgh Steelers, who was still on crutches. Maurkice suffered a high ankle sprain that kept him out of Pittsburgh’s playoff appearance and actually was having his cast improved in Indianapolis, so Mike got a kick out of not being shuffled from station to station.

“Oh man, that week was stressful,” he said. “You come in and you want to perform your best and interview your best and so you’ve got your mind everywhere trying just to perform at your best. It went by so fast and I can’t believe a year went past and I’m already back here. I guess the funniest memory was they asked me did I miss my brother and would that be an issue and I was like, I hope not, not in the NFL.”

The clearest memory for Pouncey, however, was his interview with the Dolphins because of how worried he was going in. His brother had interviewed with the Dolphins the year before and had an interesting experience.

“He said that was his worst meeting because he went in and they grilled him,” Pouncey said. “They put on his three worst plays of the year and so I went into that meeting nervous because I thought they were going to do me the same way. But we went in and we had a great time. I met with the coaches and Jeff Ireland and I just had a great time and I bonded with the Dolphins well. I’m glad they picked me on draft day.”

And when Miami took him with the 15th overall pick Pouncey achieved his goal of being selected higher than his brother by three spots. He joked that he still needs to catch up with him in the money department, but the two of a shared interest this week.

“We’re here supporting our stepbrother Chris Rainey this weekend,” said Pouncey of the running back out of the University of Florida who moved in with his family in Lakeland. “We wish him the best. I hope he goes out there and performs there and hopefully we’ll have him down there in Miami.”
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