Posts Tagged ‘Roberto Wallace’

Brian Hartline Holds Call with Dolphins Season Ticket Holders

Monday, July 23rd, 2012

Miami Dolphins fourth-year wide receiver Brian Hartline, as well as CEO Mike Dee, held a conference call with the team’s season ticket holders tonight, and DolfansNYC had the chance to listen in on their thoughts and expectations with the 2012 season on the horizon.

Over the course of his career, Hartline has caught 109 passes for 1,670 yards and five touchdown passes in 44 games (23 starts). The Ohio State product’s 15.32 yards per catch ranks 15th among all WRs with at least 100 receptions over the last three seasons, ahead of Miles Austin, Hakeem Nicks and Andre Johnson.

During the 40-minute call, Hartline discussed a wide array of topics, including the unique way in which he mastered tip-toeing the NFL sidelines and which Dolphin he’d pick in the first round of a fantasy football draft.

*No. 82, who recently underwent an appendectomy, stopped short of calling himself 100 percent ready to go, but said his rehab from the surgery has gone well.

“I’m feeling pretty good. I think 100 percent is  kind of a lost thing at this stage,” he said. “(I’m) healthy from all of the offseason fun. Life just happens sometimes.”

*Hartline expressed confidence in the team’s coaching staff, including offensive coordinator Mike Sherman, and explained the West Coast offense relies on quarterbacks and wide receivers being on the same page.

“There’s a lot going on — there’s a lot on the table for the quarterbacks, like usual,” he said. “I think our job is really to try and make it easier for the quarterbacks. Timing is big. They’ve got enough going on — they expect us to be in certain spots at a certain time.”

*Asked about his daily routine, Hartline said he typically works out in the morning, keeps his mind focused on improving and tries to eat healthy “from time to time.”

“I”m pretty much a normal guy,” he said. “(I’m) just tying not to be normal on Sundays.”

*Hartline reiterated several times that he anticipates carrying a large role on offense and being used all over the field, and revealed his personal goals are to be a veteran leader on a young team and to hit a major milestone.

“Most of my personal goals revolve around the team,” he said. “I firmly believe that if you win football games, you play at a high level, the rest of it takes care of itself.

“With that being said, I want to be a 1,000 yard receiver — that’s my goal.”

*Hartline believes that other teams with rookie quarterbacks are not as fortunate as the Dolphins, who have two talented veterans capable of carrying the load until Ryan Tannehill is ready, but confirmed that if the eighth overall pick shines in training camp, it won’t be long until he is named the starter.

“You’re going to play the best guy, and if (Tannehill) really does separate himself and he’s the best guy, then he’s going to play the game,” he said.

*Hartline said the coaches have a very difficult decision to make on the Week 1 starter, which he expects to come towards the end of training camp in order to give the players a chance to work on their timing and communication.

*Hartline acknowledged that while the NFL is a team sport, he has taken some of the criticism the Dolphins WRs have faced in the media on a personal level, and believes the underrated corps will change the negative perception.

“I know what I think of our guys, and I’m impressed with where we’ve come to where we’re at now,” he said. “Definitely, I feel like this  is the best overall group we’ve had.

“I’m not living under a rock and I understand people like the flashy names and numbers, but I think there’s more involved to that than just personnel. Our room is ready and excited.”

*Hartline said that Chad Ochocinco Johnson brings knowledge, experience and familiarity with a lot of defenses, and will help the young receivers react to different schemes.

*When he was asked which player, other than himself, he would choose in the first round of a fantasy football league, Hartline jokingly (I think) asked if Jake Long produces a lot of points, before saying Charles Clay, Anthony Fasano and Davone Bess would be his picks and that Reggie Bush “will be very important with catching the ball out of the backfield.”

*Hartline said the two players who have the most break-out potential are fellow WRs Julius Pruitt and Roberto Wallace.

*Hartline declined to reveal whether he would be one of the main subjects on the “Hard Knocks” cameras, but said he is “excited to see what it’s going to be like.”

*One of Hartline’s most interesting answers came when he was asked about how he learned to tip-toe the sidelines and make his patented spectacular down-the-field catches.
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Coach Joe Philbin Talks to Dolphins Season Ticket Holders

Wednesday, April 4th, 2012

Last night, newly-hired Miami Dolphins head coach Joe Philbin participated in a teleconference call with the team’s season ticket members, and DolfansNYC had the opportunity to listen in on the interesting Q&A session.

During the 45-minute call, Philbin touched on a variety of topics, ranging from the team’s biggest needs in the upcoming Draft to his visions for the offense, openly asking the fans to have “faith and confidence” that he will deliver results in 2012.

*Philbin said he’s happy with three quarterbacks on the roster – Matt Moore, David Garrard and Pat Devlin – and praised Moore and Garrard for being proven, winning players. He did, however, note that the starting job is still a wide-open competition between all three QBs.

“We haven’t promised anyone anything,” he said, suggesting that the winner may be the player who learns the offense the quickest and exhibits the most comfort in the system.

*Regarding the Draft, in which the Dolphins have the 8th overall pick, Philbin disclosed the Dolphins are in final preparations and that the team’s biggest needs are at pass rusher and wide receiver (somewhat surprisingly, not QB).

“You can never have enough pass rushers,” he said. “Probably 30 teams out of the 32 are talking about acquiring pass rushers and guys that can put pressure on the quarterback.”

*As for Miami’s receivers, a topic which was understandably asked about several times during the call, Philbin reiterated he plans to develop the current corps on the roster — including Clyde Gates, Roberto Wallace, Julius Pruitt — but noted the Dolphins may still bring in a free agent.

*Phiblin hopes to take advantage of Reggie Bush‘s talent and versatility and use him at running back, as well as wide receiver, in different formations to create more mismatches for opposing defenses.

“With Reggie, we want to be multiple – we’re not just going to hand the ball to him,” he said.

*Philbin said while the West Coast Offense has a lot of unpredictability and that the ball will be spread around, the Wildcat is not a likely option.

*Philbin’s praised the coaching staff, including offensive coordinator Mike Sherman and defensive coordinator Kevin Coyle, and revealed that the team will use a more collaborative approach in calling games.

“This is not going to be a one-man operation on any side of the ball,” he said.

*Philbin declined to predict whether the Dolphins will make the playoffs or his expected win-total, stating, “you’re never totally sure exactly what you have” with the roster.

“It’s a disservice, I think, to the guys that you coach to sit around here on April 3 and say, ‘We’re going to be a 7-9 team and that’s good enough, or 9-7,” he said. “We have a broader perspective at this point in time, but we’re excited about getting started, we’re optimistic.”

All in all, the head coach offered an intriguing inside look into the team’s plans and philosophy in the first of several calls that he, as well as owner Stephen Ross, will hold this offseason with Dolphins the season-ticket holders.

DolfansNYC Podcast, Episode 1: Andy Kent

Tuesday, August 30th, 2011

We’re excited to introduce the official DolfansNYC Podcast, which will feature special guests, including many of the team’s top writers and media members, players, and most passionate fans, as well as the return of our weekly fantasy football feature.

On the premiere episode, MiamiDolphins.com senior writer Andy Kent joins us to talk about Chad Henne’s remarkable improvement, Brandon Marshall’s season outlook, Reggie Bush’s workload, the most impressive players in camp, and much more.

[buzzsprout episode=”30656″ player=”true”]

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Music Credit: Solo D, “DolfansNYC Anthem”

Dolphins Waive the White Flag

Tuesday, September 7th, 2010

By now, you’ve probably heard that much-maligned Dolphins quarterback Pat White has been shown his walking papers after one disastrous season in which he became just the fourth QB to not complete a single pass with at least five attempts since the 1970 AFL-NFL merger.  It’s hard to argue that it was the wrong decision, especially with three better-qualified players ahead of him on the depth chart, but I’m a little dismayed by how the situation was handled by the coaching staff.

Pat was White trash to the Dolphins... <em>(Chris Graythen/Getty Images)</em>
Pat was White trash to the Dolphins... (Chris Graythen/Getty Images)

The Dolphins never gave White much of a chance to succeed.  During the regular season, he was inserted into the occasional “Wildcat” formation in which he could never fully show what he had to offer aside from scrambling on the ground.  In the final game, he was thrown into the fire against a stout Pittsburgh Steelers defense in the thick of the Playoff hunt.  And then, in the 2010 preseason, White took nine total snaps (none in the fourth game), kneeling down three times and throwing (and completing!) four short passes in garbage time.

It’s clear that the Dolphins front office was convinced that White wasn’t part of the team’s future plans before the preseason started and didn’t bother to give him an extended look or attempt to increase his trade value for QB-needy teams.  And that’s the part that I’ll never understand.  The Dolphins are hardly the first team to give up on an early-round draft pick — hell, the Arizona Cardinals released Matt Leinart, the 10th overall selection in 2006 — but the fact that White wasn’t on the field for even a single quarter at the expense of injury-prone veteran Chad Pennington, who hardly needed the extra work, or given the opportunity to battle Tyler Thigpen for the third QB spot doesn’t make a lot of sense.

Of course, White isn’t without fault himself.  There have been indications that his heart wasn’t fully into football after he took a vicious hit that knocked him unconscious during last year’s finale.  Despite possessing the quickness (4.44 in the 40-yard dash at the NFL combine) and shiftiness that would make him well-suited to play part-time wide receiver, a la Brad Smith and Joshua Cribbs, White refused to switch positions and indicated that he’d rather play baseball.  Those aren’t exactly the kind of words that management wants to hear out of players on the roster bubble.

Be that as it may, White is gone and somewhat surprisingly, wasn’t claimed off waivers despite having most of his 2010 salary paid by the Dolphins.  I asked Sun-Sentinel reporter Omar Kelly to do some NFL Betting on where White will end up — the CFL, the New England Patriots, or the New York Yankees.  Kelly didn’t even rule out a full retirement from football to be a “regular Joe” in White’s hometown.

Other News and Notes:

*Did the Dolphins think they could save some money by releasing TE David Martin and then re-signing him after the first week?  It’s hard to believe Miami was prepared to rely on John Nalbone, who entered training camp fourth on the depth chart and didn’t blow anyone away during preseason, in its two tight end packages.  Martin ended up signing with the Buffalo Bills, who quite coincidentally, I’m sure, happen to play the Dolphins in Week 1.  The Dolphins could quickly end up regretting their decision.

*In a less surprising move, last year’s third-round pick, WR Patrick Turner, was released over the weekend and signed with the division-rival New York Jets.  Undrafted rookies Marlon Moore and Roberto Wallace must have extremely impressive during practice for the team to keep them at Turner’s expense, because there isn’t a glaring difference in the preseason numbers.

Player Rec Yards YPC Long TD
Marlon Moore 9 106 11.8 34 1
Roberto Wallace 8 101 12.6 31 1
Patrick Turner 5 90 18.0 34 0

Turner could revive his career with the Jets while playing alongside his former USC QB Mark Sanchez, but chances are slim after he couldn’t get on the field last season and was beaten out by a pair of undrafted rookies in camp.

UPDATE: Yep, Turner has already been cut and is now on the Jets’ practice squad.  So the Dolphins paid him a $714,000 signing bonus and $310,000 in salary to make zero regular season catches and become a practice squad player on a division rival a year later. Awesome.  (more…)

Dolphins Toss and Turner

Wednesday, August 25th, 2010

According to multiple reports, the Dolphins have traded fan favorite Greg Camarillo to the Minnesota Vikings, who were in desperate need of a wide receiver after losing Pro-Bowler Sidney Rice for the next eight weeks.  A hard-worker and one of the most sure-handed players in the league, Camarillo will always be remembered for his 64-yard game-winning score from the immortal Cleo Lemon in Miami’s lone victory of the 2007 season.

Ah, good times.  It’ll go down in Dolphins history as the team’s version of the improbable “David Tyree catch” in Super Bowl XLII.  But much like Tyree, who suffered a season-ending knee injury the following and wasn’t resigned by the New York Giants despite his heroics, Camarillo lost much of his speed after tearing his ACL in 2008 and was set to enter the 2010 season as the team’s fourth receiver, at best. 

In return, Miami will receive defensive back Benny Sapp, who’s started only 17 of 86 career games, recording 140 tackles, 4 interceptions, and six fumble recoveries.  He’s not likely to significantly help the Dolphins’ secondary, aside from adding a little depth and injury insurance while Will Allen recovers from knee surgery.  Hell, 37-year-old Warren Sapp would’ve been a more exciting pick up, but alas.

The bigger outcome, is that Patrick Turner, last year’s third-round pick, will now almost certainly make the final roster.  Turner, who was active for only two games and failed to register a catch in 2009, wasn’t a lock to make the team going into training camp.  While his size (6’5″, 220 pounds) and athleticism make him a tough cover, the former USC standout had trouble grasping the fundamentals and getting off the line of scrimmage.  Turner certainly didn’t help matters by missing time with a back injury and reportedly not exhibiting a strong work ethic or sense of urgency during training camp.  He was even listed behind undrafted rookie Marlon Moore on Miami’s initial depth chart.

But Turner has shown some notable improvement in the first two preseason games, tying  for the team-lead in catches (4) and ranking fourth in receiving yards (51) behind Anthony Fasano, Marshall, and Moore.  At this point, he’s far more likely to make the team than Moore, as well as fellow undrafted rookies Julius Pruitt (3 catches for 31 yards) and Roberto Wallace (2 catches for 14 yards), if only because the Dolphins will be more reluctant to cut ties with a former high draft pick.  Or two for that matter, with the all-but-inevitable release of 2009 second-round selection Pat White.
 
The Dolphins won’t have to wait too long to find out how much Camarillo has left in the tank – Miami will travel to Minnesota for a Week 2 match-up on September 19.

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