Posted by: keith075 on Aug 24, 2011
Tagged in: Untagged
Hello Phinzmaniacs….it’s finally football time! After the way that we played last year it could not have made it here soon enough, and even with the summer-long lockout and a completely revamped offense there is still quite a lot to look forward to this season. Now, we know…all of those regional experts say that we need a quarterback and our offense still has quite a few holes to fill, but if you believed all of those idiots then you wouldn’t be a Phinzmaniac to begin with.
The truth of the matter is that inside our training camp at Nova University, a few of the players are already feeling bold enough to start whispering a few predictions about this season. The words “Super Bowl” have already been mentioned more than once, and while that may seem a little bit optimistic at this point I can assure you that it is not. Sure, our offense is still unproven and the barbarian horde from New England looks almost untouchable this year, but we’re packing a few secret weapons that could send shockwaves through the AFC East this season. Here’s a few things to look forward to-
The New and Improved Chad Henne
Okay, so maybe you weren’t too thrilled about the old Chad Henne, and maybe you were even one of the people chanting for Orton just a few weeks ago. Before stringing the guy to a tree though, there are a few things that you should probably know about our starting QB this season that has mysteriously somehow remained outside of the media for far too long-
The lockout was the best thing that could have happened for Henne. Not only did it force him to step up and be a leader since there were no coaches around, but it was also one of the first times where he was actually allowed to think for himself on a football field since his college days. Marshall, Bush, and the rest of the offense truly view him as a leader and they’re ready to follow him into battle.
Chad also appears to be reading defenses much better, he’s not staring down receivers (as bad), he can actually throw a touch pass now, and he still has a cannon of an arm.
While we’ve only seen the deep ball connect once so far in pre-season, there have been several other close calls and a few that missed by a mile. The fact that Henne’s throwing them at all shows that he’s desperately trying to take his game to that next level and we have all the faith in the world that he will get there.
The biggest difference we see is something that cannot be taught inside a locker room; players either have it or they don’t. Somewhere this offseason, Chad Henne found a little bit of a swagger in his step and he’s playing like a highly motivated leader. From 19 yard scrambles to side-stepping blitzes…Henne is playing the best football of his pro career and he knows it.
The Explosiveness of Reggie Bush
Okay, so maybe you were against parting ways with Ricky and Ronnie as well. We know we certainly were and a lot of others shared the same opinion. Reggie Bush is injury prone and unproven as an every-down type of back, but the part nobody can deny is that he is truly electrifying once he gets a step on a defender. It doesn’t matter if it’s up the middle or catching out of the backfield, Reggie Bush is going to make some huge plays this season in a Dolphins uniform.
Perhaps the sweetest news of all is that Bush is about the most modest guy you’ll meet in the NFL today. He entered camp wanting to carry this entire offense on his shoulders, and right from the start he decided to be the first on the practice field and the last to leave the gym each night. Bush has worked harder in camp than almost any other player and it truly showed against Carolina last week…he definitely still has the goods.
Some Rookies Named Thomas, Gates, and Divas
Likewise, many have expressed frustrations over Daniel Thomas not being a solid answer at RB for our offense, but this young rookie has the perfect credentials for our West-Coast style of 2011 play. He’s a bruiser up the middle yet he has some speed to create big plays, so expect to see him taking 10-15 touches a game out of the backfield. While he may not be an immediate impact player like Bush, this kid is not afraid to lower his shoulder and grind out a few extra yards….and that’s exactly the type of compliment we needed.
Clyde Gates, better known as Ted Ginn Jr. 2.0, has tremendous speed and can actually catch a pass to boot. So far he’s had a great camp and shown that he can create separation even inside the redzone, so expect to see this youngster to see some immediate playing time since he spreads the field so beautifully for Bess, Marshall, and Hartline. When he catches a 1st quarter bomb against NE in week one, please remember that we told you so.
And then there’s Phillip Livas. He’s five foot nothing, weights about a hundred and nothing, and just about every scout said the same thing about him before the draft. “The kid is talented, but he’s just too small for the NFL.” Well, we hate to burst everyone’s bubble, but he returned one punt for a touchdown against Atlanta and darn-near broke loose on three or four more. Whether or not he makes the final roster remains to be seen but if he sticks around , then every opponent’s kickoff will be dangerous.
The Wrap UP
While we didn’t get around to Marshall’s newfound respect for Henne, our vastly improved offensive line, our punishing defense, or the addictive energy found within the huddles, it is safe to say that we’ve already covered enough to give some hope for the Dolphins this season. On paper, we are easily one of the most complete teams in the NFL today, but that and a dollar will almost cover a Slurpee from 7-11 on the way to the New England game.
At this point in training camp, expectations are extremely high, so for now all that we ask from our Phinzmaniacs is a little bit of faith that this will be the season we’re still talking about ten years from now. Our boys wearing the Orange and Aqua are more confident than they have been in years, so expect them to take the field looking for blood against New England in a few weeks and try not to act surprised when we take the early lead. Whether we will keep it or not is another story entirely, but it all comes back to having a little bit of faith.