While the Dolphins are still more than five weeks away from the start of the regular season and Head Coach Brian Flores called it an ongoing competition, veteran Ryan Fitzpatrick is leading the battle for the starting quarterback job.
“It’s pretty clear to me that Ryan Fitzpatrick is leading the way,” Flores said before practice Tuesday. “I think he’s done that in a lot of areas from leadership to production on the field, in the meeting rooms, in the walkthroughs. I think this is an ongoing competition, but right now I’d say he’s leading the way.”
While the statement produced headlines everywhere, both players involved tried to downplay its significance.
“Just gotta continue to put the work in, work even harder in terms of just gaining the respect of the guys, gaining the confidence and the trust of the guys on the field and the coaching staff,” Fitzpatrick said in his post-practice media availability. “I have been through a lot in my career to know that it all depends on what you do every single day. Can’t harp on what happened in the past or what you did the last game. Nothing is given in this game. For me, I never take any of these opportunities for granted.”
Josh Rosen said he was happy with his progress so far in camp and that Flores’ statement wasn’t anything he wouldn’t have expected based on practice reps.
“You guys and us as players are on a little bit different of a memo system with Coach Flores,” Rosen said. “It’s kind of fluid throughout camp. For you guys a pretty big announcement, but in the locker room it’s always fluid and everyone is always battling.
“I keep saying that each and every day that I’m just trying to be better than I was the day before. I think I’ve been on a pretty good trajectory. I think I’m doing better each day.”
Davis, who played every snap at right guard in 2018, lined up at tackle in the final week of the offseason program after first working at guard.
“I knew it was going to happen at some point,” Davis said. “I wasn’t like scared of it or anything. I just said, OK, let’s get it done, let’s see what we’ve got.”
Davis said he was anticipating getting practice reps at tackle at some point in training camp in the team’s continuous effort to develop flexibility throughout the roster.
The third-year player says he’ll be ready to line up wherever the Dolphins need him.
“Whatever is best for the team, I’m not going to sit there and argue with them like, ‘Look, I don’t want to play this,’ ” Davis said. “Wherever there’s a spot for me, that’s where, no ifs, ands or buts, I’ll do it.”
Of all the Dolphins offensive linemen, perhaps the one most closely connected with Pat Flaherty was center Daniel Kilgore from their time together with the San Francisco 49ers.
Kilgore said he spoke with Flaherty on Monday night after he had been replaced as Dolphins offensive line coach.
“He’s a good sport,” Kilgore said. “He’s been in this business for longer than I’ve been alive and he understands. It’s tough for him, but I told him he’s an awesome coach, but he’s an even better man. I spoke to him a little bit and he thanked the guys for all their effort for him and he knows that we’re in good hands. There’s no bad blood. We understand the business side of it, but we’ve got to look forward, we’ve got to adapt.”
The Dolphins had visitors again at practice Sunday, this team members of Somerset Academy.
As will be the case with every team invited this summer, the players and coaches received a tour of the Baptist Health Training Facility at Nova Southeastern University, listened to a character development talk, watched practice and met with current coaches and players on the field, and had lunch.
Also attending practice as guests were members of Football Unites partners Pridelines, the Dan Marino Foundation and the Islamic Center of Greater Miami, as well as the Tamiami Colts of Greater Miami Pop Warner, who ran through some drills at the Baptist Health Training Facility at Nova Southeastern University after practice.