I Said It

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I Said It: Patrick Graham, Chad O'Shea Look Ahead To Patriots

Offensive coordinator Chad O'Shea and defensive coordinator Patrick Graham both addressed the media Tuesday. Here were some comments that stood out, along with some perspective:

“Our challenge this week, it's all about us. It's about us doing a better job, being better in every area.”

— The New England defense shut down the Pittsburgh Steelers on Sunday night, so it clearly will present a tough challenge for the Dolphins offense. But for O’Shea, the biggest priority is cleaning up the mistakes from the season opener and that ultimately will help provide better results on game day.

“It's a work in progress. I think they've improved. We saw drastic improvement in practice last week.”

— The offensive line added a lot of new pieces between the end of the preseason and the start of the regular season, so there was bound to be an acclimation period. O’Shea says the starting five against Baltimore won’t necessarily remain the same against New England on Sunday unless the coaching staff determines that’s the group that gives the team the best chance to win.

"I have a tremendous amount of respect for New England, but so much focus for us is going to be about us.”

— Like Head Coach Brian Flores, Graham and many other Dolphins assistants, O’Shea developed a lot of personal relationships while working in New England, which makes the game Sunday a bit unique. But it’s pretty unanimous among Dolphins coaches that this weekend is all about the Dolphins and not their former team.

“The guys on the field, they earned that spot.”

— Defensive end Jonathan Ledbetter was in the starting lineup in the season opener after earning a roster spot as an undrafted rookie free agent. Graham made it clear that Ledbetter deserved to be a starter based on his performance this summer.

“The scheme doesn't really matter right now. I'm more worried about the fundamentals.”

— This was a theme Graham repeated during his media session, that the biggest concern right now for his defense is to do the little things right so that everything can work on a grander scale. This means better tackling, getting off blocks, reading keys, all things that will help the defense improve no matter what scheme the Dolphins decide to employ Sunday and beyond.

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