NOTEBOOK: Energetic Practice Closes Short Week; Other Notes

Posted Oct 8, 2013

Fundamentals and individual drills were the theme of the day.

Two-and-a-half months of grinding through training camp, the preseason and five regular-season games will take its toll on any football team. But the Miami Dolphins treated this morning’s last practice before the bye like any other.

It would be easy for a player to want to take it easy on the practice field knowing he’s about to get five days off, especially in the South Florida heat. This coming just three days after Miami’s second straight loss of the season after a 3-0 start added some urgency to the session.

“When you lose two games back-to-back there’s no messing around,” Dolphins center Mike Pouncey said. “Your full focus is into football and I think the guys went out there and we had a great day of practice. Obviously, the injured guys had to sit out and we’re trying to get those guys back, but I think for the most part we had a productive day. We went back to the fundamentals, day one football kind of stuff and we got better as a football team today.”

Second-year quarterback Ryan Tannehill made the most out of the time outside with his teammates, specifically during the situational drills like two-minute. That’s an area he excelled in during the three wins both at the end of the first half and at the end of games.

This was a chance to get some extra repetitions and work out more of the kinks going forward with four of the next six games at home inside Sun Life Stadium. As the leader of the offense, Tannehill approached the day appropriately.

“We did several two-minute drills and it’s going to continue to be a big part of the season,” said Tannehill, who has completed 114-of-182 passes for 1,383 yards, six touchdowns and five interceptions so far. “We got two reps of that, a full first and second team today and I thought that was good work. We had a move-the-ball period where we just basically played football for a series, two move-the-balls, and the rest of the day was fundamentals and special teams. Everyone went hard out there today.”

There were also a lot of one-on-one drills designed to promote competition among the wide receivers and defensive backs, tight ends and linebackers and the offensive and defensive lines. Head Coach Joe Philbin liked what he saw.

“I told the players just now, they’ve been at it hard really since July 21st and I think the bye’s coming at an appropriate time,” he said. “We’ll be ready to go on Monday when we come back and begin our preparation for Buffalo.”


It was a bit of a change of pace today for the Dolphins at practice as everything was held outside, which means the music played during the stretching period blared from the outdoor speakers. Apparently, the players have taken a liking to the song “305 To My City,” by Drake & Detail, as it was the first song once again.


Now will be the perfect time for those players with nicks, bruises and other injuries to heal before the final stretch of 11 games. To that end, safety Chris Clemons, linebacker Dannell Ellerbe, cornerback Dimitri Patterson, defensive end Cameron Wake were kept out of the portion of practice open to the media today.


“I hope to drive my daughter to school one day and maybe watch her dance or something and do stuff like that. I want to spend time with my family, absolutely.” – Philbin on what he plans to do during the bye when he’s not working

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