Are Dolphins' new video boards worth watching? They think so
DAVIE, Fla. (AP) Large new video boards stood on three sides of the Miami Dolphins' practice field for the first day of training camp, a sign the team plans to be worth watching this year.
Looking at the big picture, expectations are up after the Dolphins made the playoffs last season for the first time since 2008. Second-year coach Adam Gase believes his team will benefit from better familiarity with his scheme than a year ago at this time, and that's especially true for quarterback Ryan Tannehill.
''He has already corrected me about three times on play calls,'' Gase said Thursday after the first workout in feel-like temperatures of 100 degrees.
Tannehill wore the left knee brace that's now part of his equipment following an injury that sidelined him for the final four games last season. He reiterated he's 100 percent with no restrictions because of the knee.
''It feels good, just like it did in the spring,'' Tannehill said. ''No changes. Even better. It has been a journey. Dealing with an injury like that for the first time was a tough process for me.''
Center Mike Pouncey worked on the side after missing 11 games last year because of a hip injury. To keep him healthy, Gase plans to give him only limited repetitions in training camp.
''I told him, `We have the best Jane Fonda workouts for you,''' Gase said. ''He's dreading the cardio stuff.''
Said Pouncey with a smile regarding Gase's plan: ''Me and him have a little bit of a disagreement with that. He wants to keep me in bubble wrap.''
But Pouncey conceded he needs little time on the field to be ready for the opener Sept. 10.
Receiver Jarvis Landry drew attention just by showing up, declining to make waves regarding his desire for a new contract. He's set to earn a base salary of $893,852 this season in the final year of his rookie contract, which makes him one of the NFL's best bargains.
Landry said he didn't consider sitting out the start of camp.
''Having an opportunity to take another step, we don't need anything hindering us from that path,'' Landry said. ''So for me to be here and to show the guys that it is about them and it's about the team, that's what I'm here to do.''
Team owner Stephen Ross declined to speculate on the chances of a deal with Landry anytime soon.
''I hope he stays here,'' Ross said. ''He's a great player.''
Landry is part of an offense with plenty of talent at the skilled positions, but blocking is a question mark. There are also lingering doubts about a defense fortified in the draft and free agency after ranking fourth-worst in the league last year.
Despite the leaky defense, the Dolphins went 10-7 in 2016. Prognosticators peg them at around .500 this year, but for players, July is a time to be optimistic.
''Expectations are up,'' Tannehill said. ''That's what you want. You want to be putting that pressure on yourself. We have the right people in this building to do what we need to do, and the mindset is right.''
Ross raves about his coach and quarterback but doesn't want excessive expectations, and he recoiled from making any Super Bowl predictions.
''You take one step at a time,'' Ross said. ''We all have great expectations, but you've got to be realistic. We're a young, growing team.''
Gase, looking for every possible edge, had the new video boards installed so players could see replays during practice.
''It's just another tool for us to almost start watching film before we get in the meeting room,'' he said.
He's counting on good things to see.
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