It was day eight in pads for the Miami Dolphins at the team's training camp in Davie - and NBC 6 sports anchor Ruthie Polinsky has a complete recap, including a successful day for one youngster using more than just his arm.
- It was a very light day of padded practices with minimal 11-on-11 work and ended practice with sprints.
- One highlight of Wednesday’s practice was rookie quarterback Tua Tagovailoa showing mobility on a run. It was more evidence of the rookie’s health following his season ending hip injury at Alabama last year.
- The players are off on Thursday and will return to team facility on Friday before practice on Saturday at Hard Rock Stadium. Head coach Brian Flores would not commit to whether or not there would be “live” tackling in true scrimmage fashion.
WHAT THEY SAID
From Flores' press conference before practice:
- On 2020 5th round draft pick Curtis Weaver being claimed off of waivers on Monday: “Obviously, draft picks are very valuable but every situation is a little bit different. I liked Weaver. I thought he was a good player. I thought he had some potential. But his situation – like I said yesterday, when we make these decisions, there’s a lot of things that go into them that, quite frankly, you guys don’t know much about – whether it’s the injury itself, salary cap implications, depth at the position, next year’s draft. There’s 10 different things there. We make the decision that we feel is best for the organization. Obviously there’s a lot of – when we make a selection, we feel good about it then and the transactions that happen after that, we live with them and we move on.
- On free agent signing cornerback Byron Jones: “I think he’s done a good job; but as you put it, he’s getting acclimated. I think the heat down here for a lot of players is something you’ve got to get acclimated to. I know when I showed up here, it was something I had to get acclimated to as well. I think he’s doing a good job. I think practices have been competitive between he, DeVante (Parker), Preston (Williams), Jakeem (Grant) – really that receiver/DB competition that’s gone on there has been good. Byron’s a good player. I think he’s improving every day. He’ll continue to improve. He puts the work in. He’s very diligent. Obviously it’s a new system. He’s still learning some of the nuances within the system, but I think he’s progressing well.”
- On the running game: “I think there’s a lot of competition in that room and guys each have their own unique skill set. It’s been a physical camp. Obviously we’re not taking them to the ground but there is contact defensively on our offensive and defensive lines, so you get a pretty good feel for who is getting yards, who would break what tackle. But at the running back position, are they making the right cut? I think each guy has had some good moments, has had some not-so-good moments. We’re all kind of getting better after each rep. The blocking, from a protection standpoint, has been good for the most part, at least as far as knowing who to block and where to go. In the pass game, I think they’re doing a good job in the pass game as well.”
- On practice with officials: “Yeah, I thought it was great to have the officials out there and get more of a live, real look at what the game atmosphere would be like. As you would imagine in a training camp setting, there’s a lot of chatter about ‘that would have been a foul,’ or ‘this would have been holding,’ or ‘this would have been pass interference.’ It was good to get them out there. I tried to talk to the players about not worrying about the officials and moving onto the next play, so it was nice to let them call it, let them handle it and whether you agree or disagree, we just have to move on. There’s also just some things that we could have done better. We had a couple of delay of games yesterday. There was a potentially close 12-men in the huddle (situation). Those are penalties that we can take care of ourselves as long as we’re paying attention to detail and we’re, as a coaching staff and as players, on top of things. It’s always great to have the officials and to have a game-like atmosphere. It really felt like football.”
- On a possible scrimmage this weekend: “That’s something we talk about on a daily basis. Look, the health of the team is the most important thing. Maybe at some point we’ll get some live tackling. I think, at least I can evaluate the run game without live tackling and get a sense of whether or not we’re getting yardage or not getting yardage. But again, I think it’s something that as a staff, we’ll talk about. As far as the live tackling in the scrimmage, we’re actually going to go to the stadium and practice on Saturday. We may have live tackling there; we may not. We’ll see then.”
New safety Kavon Frazier spoke passionately about racial injustice. He told the media that he was racially profiled when he was 10 years old when police officers thought he had a gun. Frazier adding that was when he realized people could be targeted based on the color of his skin.
The Dolphins safety also spoke about the recent police involved shooting of Jacob Blake, in disbelief that something like that could happen following the death of George Floyd. Frazier said, “I’m really lost. Lost for words. Lost for hope.”