Posts Tagged ‘new orleans saints’

Dan Campbell Shares Keys to Winning Culture

Tuesday, October 27th, 2015
Dan Campbell Shares Keys to Winning Culture
Photo: Alan Diaz/AP

Six years removed from a decade-long NFL playing career, Miami Dolphins interim head coach Dan Campbell – his broad-shouldered, 6-foot-5 frame and intimidating biceps hard to miss as he rests his hands on his hips at the center of the team’s meeting room – still looks the part of a burly tight end, ready to lace up his cleats and lay out opposing linemen with crushing blocks.

“I have one more (game in me), but then you have to wait four weeks for me to recover, so that’s a problem,” he concedes with a chuckle. “If I could still play, I would be playing because I love the game.”

That same fiery, inspirational passion for football that has galvanized the rejuvenated Dolphins is unmistakable as he addresses a group of website administrators on a Friday afternoon, his booming voice echoing throughout the auditorium.

“Coach Campbell does a good job of getting (everything) out of the players,” says Dolphins fourth-year wide receiver Rishard Matthews. “He was a guy they brought up here a previous time to speak to the team. I think just when he talks – I don’t know how to explain it – you have to hear him speak for yourself … right when he’s done talking, you’re just ready to go.

“He played in the league – he’s more like a players’ coach. He understands when he needs to change it up a little and when he needs to get on us a little.”

It’s no wonder Campbell’s no-nonsense approach has quickly resonated and changed the collective mindset of his players, considering the 39-year-old – who’s younger than five current NFL starters – has experienced the gamut of exhilarating highs and devastating lows in the pros, which include reaching Super Bowl XXXV and later earning his first championship ring.

“I’ve been on winning teams,” says Campbell, a recipient of the 2005 Ed Block Courage Award. “I know what it looks like and what it should look like.”

The Texas native’s appreciation of a winning culture and yearning for on-field physicality trace back to his four-year Giants tenure, during which he helped lead the unified squad to the title game in 2000.

“First of all, we had a really good locker room – we had a majority of guys who bought in,” he recalls. “Guys would play for one another; guys would practice for one another. Our practices got heated. I remember (Michael) Strahan got fired up every day, it seemed like … Things would go back and forth (between offensive and defensive players), but we grew together and we competed, and when we rolled out there on Sunday, we were one.

“Once we got in a rhythm – I think we won seven in a row – the feeling was literally that we could do nothing wrong. At one point, I thought Kerry Collins would just throw it behind his back and it was going to be a completion. You really have a feeling of it doesn’t matter what happens today or what it looks like here, we’re going to win the game. That’s the flow that you have.”

Although Campbell was placed on injured reserve prior to his final NFL campaign, he spent the offseason and start of training camp with the 2009 champion Saints, learning the nuances of the game from an elite coach and future Hall of Fame quarterback.

“I know that head coach (Sean Payton) really well – I played under him for seven years. He is a genius, he’s an excellent motivator – he has all those tools,” says Campbell. “But one of the biggest factors is a guy named Drew Brees. Drew Brees is an ultimate leader. I’ve been around some really good players and some really good leaders, but nobody was like Drew Brees … and that’s one person, so imagine if you have a team full of those. That’s where you start changing things.”

Campbell’s experience in the Bayou was a far cry from a year prior, when he found himself on the opposite end of the NFL spectrum, suiting up for the lowly 0-16 Detroit Lions in 2008. Recognizing a similar disconnect in the Dolphins locker room, Campbell immediately set out to recapture the seamless magic he experienced in New York and New Orleans.

“When you’re not doing well, or you’re on a team where guys haven’t quite bought in, you feel like you can do no right,” he says. “So that’s what we’re trying to flip. We’ve kind of been that other team, (but) we’re trying to get it to where you just can’t do any wrong and things just start happening – turnovers, they become contagious. The ball is flying around, guys are on the ball. The more aggressive you play, the more those things start showing up.”

Not surprisingly, Miami has outscored its opponents 82-36, averaging 468 yards of offense while racking up 10 sacks and returning two interceptions for touchdowns en route to cruising to a 2-0 record under its new leader.

“We have a really good locker room and we have guys who want to win,” says Campbell. “They want to compete, and they’re beginning to take ownership of their team.

“I really believe in those guys. Everything has been about, ‘It’s a new season.’ It started last week. This (was) Week Two … of 12 weeks.”

Monday Night Photos

Wednesday, October 2nd, 2013

On Monday we had a huge party at Slattery’s Midtown Pub! The Dolphins were playing great football for 28 minutes before it all went to hell right before the two minute warning, but such is life. It’s a long season and you aren’t going to win every game. Fortunately, even with the loss Dolfans NYC had a great time. We had one of our original founding members DJ Tropic spin during commercials and it worked out really well. Even late in the game we were at least enjoying the music, food and the company. People stuck around and even celebrated and sang the fight song on the garbage time TD. I also noticed a ton of rational positivity on our Facebook page. It’s great to be around Phins fans who aren’t screaming Fireland this and Tannehill sucks that. I really love this group.

Both floors of the bar were packed. It’s great to see so many people show up when the game is on TV. We have really made an event of it. We had a big raffle and sold t-shirts and ended up raising over $1200 for charity. It was really amazing. The two big prizes in the raffle were a Bob Griese signed hat and another hat signed by Tannehill, Hartline, Jimmy Wilson and Austin Spitler. Two cool things happened with that. Our member Bryan who had donated the Tannehill/Hartline hat actually won the Griese hat. It was great to see since not only has he been a big supporter of the club but he also lost 90% of his Dolphins memorabilia collection in Hurricane Sandy last year. The other cool thing was that Austin Spitler got resigned today so all four people who signed the hat are actually still on the Phins.

Anyway, I took a bunch of pictures, even after we were getting beat on pretty badly. I hope you guys dig them. If you want to save one just double click the gallery below and it will take you directly to our Flickr page. Phins up!

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It’s A Monday Night Party!

Sunday, September 29th, 2013

Tomorrow night the Dolphins get their first prime time football game of the year and we couldn’t be more excited! All the experts are picking the Saints to beat us but the Phins are looking to prove them wrong. Honestly, I don’t even think we mach up very well against the Saints, but after seeing Cleveland and Indianapolis win big today maybe the Dolphins are even better than I expected. A win tomorrow would be huge, but win or lose we are going to have a party in NYC!

This week at Slattery’s Midtown Pub we are having a pretty great event happening. Starting an hour before kick off have Dolfans NYC member  and party time DJ Tropic playing Miami hits during commercials and half time. Hopefully he will be playing our fight song all night long. We also have a big raffle happening with all the money going to charity. We are going to be giving away a hat signed by Bob Griese, another autographed item and at least three other Dolphins prizes. As always Dolphins fans get happy hour drink prices and our own menu for the game. It should be a lot of fun.

On top of that the Direct TV is finally up and running at Slattery’s so there shouldn’t be any TV problems from this moment forward. Everything will be in HD and looking awesome. I will be taking photos of everyone for the website AND we are getting a new batch of DolfansNYC T-shirts in so if we were out of your size last week or you haven’t had a chance to pick up a shirt yet we will have them for sale Monday.

The bar should be packed tomorrow so come out early and party with us all night long. I hope you guys are ready for some football!

Moving Forward…

Wednesday, October 28th, 2009

Wednesdays are usually when I can start dealing with life after a Dolphins loss.  This one stung extra badly and every time I am reminded of football I get flashbacks to Drew Brees dismantling the Dolphins after the 28 best minutes of football the Dolphins have played in a decade. Can we get over this? Personally, I probably will be able to sleep 8 hours without having a nightmare involving a wide open Ted Ginn dropping a pass one day, but I am not sure the Dolphins can get back into the hunt.  They are now dead last in the AFC East with two tough division games.  If we can manage to win the next two games, things soften up quite a bit and we will be 4-0 in the division.  If we lose one of the next two, it is pretty much game over as far as 2009 goes. I still have hope.

I took a lot of photos before half time of the Saints game and you can check them out below.  People were in a joyous mood as we sang the Dolphins fight song until our throats hurt.  I want to look at these photos and pretend the thirty minutes that followed them never happened. If you click the slideshow below it will take you to Flickr where you can download the pictures for your Facebooks or Friendsters or whatever the kids are doing these days.

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Next Up: The Aints

Saturday, October 24th, 2009

Huge game this week against the Saints.  We are up against probably the best team in the NFL right now.  If we can take this game we will be back to  .500 and serious contenders.  If we lose, we go into two huge divisional games 2 games back.  I can’t wait.
Third & Long should be packed for this game and I hope most of you can make it out. And remember its the 4:15 game so you have all day to get mentally prepared.

I wanted to give you guys and update on our website.  I was hoping it was going to be ready to launch today, but it’s not quite there.  I think it will be up in the next 48 hours though for sure. I will send out another message then.  We are looking for contributors to the site, so if you have any ideas let  me know

I also wanted to mention two events we have coming up:

Next weekend is the Dolphins/Jets game in the Meadowlands.  We have purchased 30 tickets as a group and I know a lot of other people are going.  We are planning at tailgate so we will let you know as soon as we find out where we are going to be.  That should be crazy.

The weekend after that is the first Patriots game and we are going to be doing a DolfansNYC fundraiser.  We have had some expenses and plan on having some more over the rest of the season so we are trying to raise $250 to pay for this stuff. We are going to do a tailgate at Third and Long with food and raffles and some other surprises. There will be a $10 suggested donation for food and $1 raffle tickets for Dolphins stuff. Any money raised over $250 will be donated to Third and Long’s charity The I Will Foundation.

Okay, so thats that.  I hope to see you all out tomorrow and as always, Go Dolphins!

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