Hello fellow fin fans. I finally was able to make it back to a practice today after over a week. I’ll also be going to the 3pm practice tomorrow.
Some observations from today’s practice:
The more I watch these practices, the more I see Ted Ginn looking like a ‘real’ receiver. He runs every route hard, and not only makes every catch look easy, but will try and make it more difficult simply because he can (meaning he'll catch it a little low to work on his hands, twist while in the air if he had to jump for the ball, or running full speed after making a nice catch...they are little things but all indicators of confidence, a great sign for Ginn) His hands look softer then ever, and he is developing what looks like a swagger out there amongst the other Dolphins WR’s. During simple passing drills, Chad Pennington easily hit him in stride 30+ yards downfield, and Ginn can get there quick.
Chad Henne had a rough day….looking a second or so ‘off’ during early passing drills, and then had a terrible 2-minute drill. He was sacked (by Tyrone Culver) and had an interception dropped (by Courtney Bryan) during a quick 4 and out.
Pat White, on the other hand, looked better today then I have ever seen him. Despite struggling early during 11x11’s, he was consistently hitting guys during 6x6 drills, hooking up with Patrick Turner on an up and out route for about 25 yards, and hit James Robinson twice on short crossing routes. One of the catches by Robinson was a sick 1-handed grab; this guy stood out all day. It’s unfortunate that a guy that seems to have potential and could make a dent really has no shot; with all of our young talent we suddenly have at WR. It’s still a nice problem to have.
During 11x11’s, the 1st team D looked really good. The safeties were doing a great job of getting to the line and plugging up running lanes. I’m very excited about our defense this year. They really look amazing. Sean Smith continues to impress as well; nobody can beat him. Not on any kind of regular basis, anyway.
Patrick Cobbs was showing some real explosiveness. The way he hits a hole is impressive, and hopefully he gets some more snaps this year. Unfortunately, the two guys in front of him are also pretty darn good. Again, another good problem to have.
While special teams was working on kickoff coverage and blocking, Bill Parcells drive his cart over to Ricky and Ronnie and the 3 of them talked for several minutes. Then as Bill went to drive away, Ronnie kept barking at him to the point where he drove his cart in a complete circle around the 2 backs. I have no idea if they were joking around or what, but it was cool watching the interaction and how comfortable they seemed to be around each other.
I noticed Jason Taylor and Joey Porter walking together a few times in between drills. Old leader meets new leader? Channing has to factor into that mix somewhere though….
Pennington and Henne both are very good at hitting guys underneath as soon as they see the long routes aren’t there. If that carries over into games, it means turning sacks into gains. Almost every down (I’d say 4/5) they would find the guy crossing underneath. I’m excited for Monday to see how Henne handles himself over the course of a couple quarters.
The 1st team had an ok 2 minute drill, driving down field thanks to Ted Ginn catching a ball deflected at the line, and a ‘no fumble’ call on a play where Ronnie Brown caught a short pass and instantly turned around into Channing Crowder, who took the ball right from Brown. The drive led to the 35 and a 52-yard wide left FG attempt by Dan Carpenter.
The 3rd team survived a Reggie Torbor sack on the 1st play, and then on 2nd down Pat White had the pass deflected and almost taken for a pick 6 by Tyrone Culver. White then hit Chris Williams on back-to-back plays good for 20 and 15 yards respectively. His final completion was a short one to Anthony Kimble, which put the ball at the 26-yard line. Unfortunately, Connor Barth missed the 43 yarder, doinking the ball off of the left upright.
While we’re on the subject of kickers, they kinda ‘faced off, kicking four FG’s one at a time. DC$ missed the first one from 36 yards out, then hit from 41, 44 and 39. Barth hit all four, from 36, 39, 44 and 41.
That’s all for today…but as I said, I’m going tomorrow afternoon before heading into work. I’ll do my best to get my notes posted as quickly as I can when I get there. Have a great weekend, everyone!