Miami Dolphins head coach Mike McDaniel and quarterback Skylar Thompson met with the media today as the team faces off against Minnesota on Sunday, Oct. 16. Check out the top quotes from their media availabilities.
HEAD COACH MIKE McDANIEL
(On a teaching point he gave QB Skylar Thompson after the Jets game)
"When I talked to him yesterday, I talked to all those guys yesterday, (and) the one thing I said to him is that you take stuff, you learn stuff, but you also have to understand what the situation was last week. I want you to – there were some things that he was definitely happy with. He definitely left the game feeling like, just like he thought in the preseason, that he's an NFL player. But also, I made sure to (say), 'Hey, look at these 10 plays that I know you're not happy with. OK, what's this common denominator?' There was some footwork stuff, there was some timing stuff, all of which you can kind of connect to that was his first live full speed rep of that footwork, that concept, that progression. 'So, this week, you're going to be afforded all those full speed reps. Understand that game is that game – take it for what it is. You got, basically, your first start out of the way. This week, you have a great opportunity to hone-in on the details of all the things you'll be asked to do on Sunday. So move forward with that and gain confidence with that because if that's the worst that we'll see, which you talk about controlling the controllables and if you're going into a game, especially as a rookie, completely blind without reps, if that's the worst you're going to do, we're all right. So you should get confidence, in an ironic way, from that game that you, without a shadow of a doubt, can play up to your own personal standard. And that, I wanted him to – because to me, that's a big deal. It made me confident in him that he was able to do what he did, own the game plan and be a pretty darn good decision-maker without having anything full speed of that given gameplan, which in this game and the National Football League, the difference between that is the difference between an interception or a completion. So timing is everything. This full-speed work is vitally important, and I know he's going to make the best of it this week. So be excited and just go after it because everybody believes in you."
(On the importance of QB Skylar Thompson having other quarterbacks on the sideline with him this week after QB Teddy Bridgewater left the Jets game)
"Huge. Huge, because in a game experience for a quarterback, you get coached. There's a lot of stuff going on and you're taking in information from one, two, three voices. But then when you have a peer that has gone through it and has seen it, that translation – it might be one word, it might be a pat on the back – that teammate support is a very immensely huge thing for a player like that. That's the great thing about that room that we really – really, I hope all the rooms on our team can really be inspired by that group because they support each other, they make each other better and it will make a definitive difference, for sure, having that support from his brother on the sidelines this week. It was a lonely sideline last week. He just – all Skylar (Thompson) had to talk to was (Quarterbacks/Pass Game Coordinator Darrell) Bevell and myself. We're great guys, but not that great at conversations. (laughter)"
QB SKYLAR THOMPSON
(On his emotions this week as he is expected to start his first NFL game on Sunday)
"Yeah, I mean, it's exciting. It's a dream come true. It's something that I've worked for my whole life. There's a ton that goes into that. I didn't get here just by myself. There are a lot of people that have contributed to help me get to where I am today – my family, my past coaches, my current coaches, my current teammates, Teddy (Bridgewater) and Tua (Tagovailoa). There's a handful of people that have helped me get to this spot and I'm not the type of person to point the finger at me and I did it by myself and all that type of stuff. That's not the case at all. I'm very grateful for this opportunity and I'm super excited to go to work today and have this opportunity in front of me."
(On the support he's gotten from the locker room)
"Man, I've had countless guys (come offer me support). I mean, too many to name. There's been a great support system that I've had from this team and guys that are showing trust and belief in me. And for me being a rookie, walking in here and having that support, I think it just speaks volumes about the type of guys we have in our locker room. The people we have in this organization is tremendous. I've said this quite a few times that when you come to work every day with great people, it makes the work fun because you know the days are long, you're sacrificing a lot of time out of your day to be successful and to win. Having great people surrounding you during the process is big time and I've been very fortunate being in this organization and being surrounded by great people."
(On what his takeaway was from the Jets game compared to a preseason game)
"Yeah, I mean, it's a lot different than the preseason. The defense is more complex, there's a lot more going on, the offensive playbook is expanded further. So all those things kind of going into one. It is a different game than the preseason. That's one thing that I felt at the beginning of the game and what's encouraging for me is I do – reflecting back on the game, there were moments where it was slowing down for me and I was trusting what I was seeing, making a good throw and making some plays for us. So there were some positive things to come from that and to grow from."