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Dolphins 2023 OTAs: Mike McDaniel explains limited practices this year

The Miami Dolphins conclude their scheduled Organized Team Activities today after just six of the authorized 10 practices. Why did they limit the workouts?

Miami Dolphins Offseason Workout Photo by Megan Briggs/Getty Images

The Miami Dolphins will hold the final practice of their Organized Team Activities (OTAs) during the 2023 offseason training program. Today’s workout is just the sixth of an authorized ten days of OTAs, but Miami has elected to not use the other four days. Why? Head coach Mike McDaniel discussed the scheduling on Wednesday.

“A lot of things factor into it,” he said. “I think that by and large, players, coaches, people in general, do best when ‘why’ is explained to them. In this particular situation, I think that it is crucial that we have, as convicted, present, deliberate, football players when they’re approaching practice and really recognizing how each opportunity is very crucial to the development of the team. I think when you’re able to acknowledge players’ hard work, and they get positively reinforced with actual action, I think it goes a long way.”

He continued, “They are afforded the less practices because they’ve earned it because of the way they’ve approached the whole offseason. My standards for preparation are pretty high and they have recognized that and really heeded to the expectation across the board. I think in those types of circumstances, everyone benefits with a little bone here or there.”

The Dolphins will still hold their minicamp June 6-8, but McDaniel seems to be happy with what the players were doing on their own this offseason, so he rewarded them. Four days of 7-on-7, 9-on-7, and 11-on-11 drills may not make a huge difference in September when the regular season starts, but giving the players four days off from practice could promote the morale of the group, and make them more motivated to work hard on their own next offseason.

After today’s OTA practice and the minicamp next week, Miami will break until the start of training camp in July. The exact start date of camp has not been set, but teams can typically have their rookies report three weeks before the first preseason contest, while the veterans can report two weeks before the game. The Dolphins’ first preseason game is August 11, which would put the Dolphins reporting around July 20th for the rookies and July 27th - but again, those dates have not been set.