Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Dolphins Media-Friendly OTA Today + Contest #2 Deadline

Some observations of my own, and then we'll open it for comments.

First of all, a quick reminder that the entry dead-line for Contest # 2 is at 1pm Pacific/4pm Eastern TODAY!! All e-mailed entries must be in my inbox by that time. Thanks to those who have taken a stab at the contest, we already have more entrants for this mini-contest than we did for the first one a few weeks back. The next one, Contest # 3, will be much tougher than this one as it will have more questions involving predictions as we whittle down the roster during training camp/pre-season. It's not that far away.

Ok, with that out of the way, the media-open OTA caravan comes back into town in Davie, and once again we have loads of conflicting reports from the heavy-hitters of the Dolphins beat writer clan. I thought about creating a table showing how differently Omar, Edgar and (cough)Armando(cough) see things at these OTAs. But then I realized I would be here all day and night.

So instead, I suggest you keep an eye on Omar's blog for insight, Edgar's blog for outrageous claims (that usually turn out to be right about a week later), and Armando's blog if my ego isn't big enough for you.

In the end, I always find the actual Aquavision videos to be the best indicator of how things are
going. There are certain clues in the press conferences and highlight video that many of the media tend to miss, but I have found to be bordering on 'extremely accurate' indicators of where things are.

A couple of examples of my observations:

1. If Sparano mentions you by name in a positive light (says he's 'feeling you'), you are MORE than just doing something right, you are doing something IMPRESSIVE. That translates into the coaches talking about you behind closed doors, in a good way.

2. The order that the players run in drills IS significant. Watch the receiving drills. It rarely varies
from this order: Camarillo, Ginn, Bess, Armstrong, etc etc. These four guys are the front runners. Ginn and Bess may be running with the starting team in team drills, but the fact that Camarillo is leading the pack in individual drills means that he still has the full respect and expectation of the coaches. And before anyone says its a seniority thing, remember this, in 2008, Wilford and Hagan did not go first in this line-up, and also this year Brandon London has been running behind Armstrong and at least one rookie, so it's not about seniority, though it doesn't hurt. The same can be said for DB drills, linebacker drills, OL drills, etc. It may seem like seniority at first but that's only because the best players tend to have longer careers and more starts, etc.

3. If Sparano has never mentioned your name EVER in a press conference, the likelihood of you making the final team is close to ZERO. Even Quentin Moses has been mentioned this year. Lowber, to my knowledge had not. There is still time to make an impression, but the more time goes by the more impressive that impression has to be. This does not bode well for about half the OL, including 2009 draftee Andrew Gardner, and our knightly friend SirVincent Rogers. No mention for Mark Lewis or Brandon London (every other receiver has gotten a soundbyte). Believe it or not, in 3 press conferences, Sparano has mentioned at least 2 thirds of the team by name. If your name doesn't get mentioned within the next two weeks (when the OTAs end), you might be out of work soon.

Do you guys notice anything else about how the Dolphins run their off-season that is telling of who makes the team? Or maybe you notice some strategic hints? Let's discuss while we wait for the end of the day reports.


  1. I notice when Parcells is by himself, he walks, but when one of his obese friends comes for a visit, they always take the golf cart. 

  2. First, let me just ask everyones opinion here, if I get a new dog, is acceptable to name hime Wildcat (I was thinking about calling him Wiley most the time anyway)? It's either that or Marino. your thoughts?
    Also, I agree with 90% of your post as far as drill order and sprarano "feeling" guys by name. The one exception I'd like to note is that unless your last name is Long, it's actually a good thing for an O-lineman not to be mentioned. Just food for thought.

  3. haha, your wildcat would be hilarious if it were a toy-breed.  I actually think Marino would be a great dog name.
    oh, and while I agree with you on the o-line rule, I don't think it applies as much during the off-season.  Jake Long gets mentioned more than any other Dolphin by Sparano.  He is a #1 pick after all.  But during games, you're right, you don't want to be noticed or called out.

  4. I like the name of Dog for it's name.  What could be more fitting. :)   You guys are really into the little stuff like how they onto the field.  I'm lucky if I can find Tinshakers site on my computer.  I guess I should start watching the Dolphins site a little more.
    One thing for sure though I think Miami really has a Coach in Sparano.  If Parcells and Ireland do no more than bring him here to Coach they have done a great job.  The guy knows what he is doing.  He's going to be here a long time.

  5. I have heard that it is not good to name a dog anything with the word no in it, like MariNO, BruNO, etc.  Causes confusion during training. 

  6. If it's a Brown athletic dog, name him Runny Brown.
    If it's a White Lab name him Jake Longtail.
    And if it's a dog who can't throw a football call him Pat White.