Miami Dolphins ST coordinator Darren Rizzi fires back at Arizona Cardinals’ charge

Dolphins kicker Andrew Franks (3), celebrates kicking the winning field goal against the the Arizona Cardinals on the final play Sunay. with one second left on the clock Sunday December 11, 2016 at Hard Rock Stadium in Miami Gardens. (Bill Ingram / The Palm Beach Post)
Dolphins kicker Andrew Franks (3), celebrates kicking the winning field goal against Arizona on the final play Sunday. Holder Matt Darr (4) is on the left. (Bill Ingram / The Palm Beach Post)

What Darren Rizzi, the Dolphins’ special teams coordinator and assistant head coach, said Wednesday:

  • Before kick, he told Andrew Franks “absolutely nothing.” After the winning FG, “I told him congratulations.” Why the simple approach? Says before kick was “no time for a pep talk.” Says it’s not a good time to put your arm around a kicker.
  • Said Dolphins checked forecast midweek and when they figured it would be raining for Cardinals game, they did wet ball drills last Thursday, tried to simulate the situation as best they could.
  • Controversy! Says Dolphins didn’t do anything illegal and “quite frankly am a little bit offended because it’s really accusing us of cheating, really, to be honest with you.” that Cardinals would insinuate they did something illegal (simulating snap) that led to the botched extra point. “We certainly didn’t do anything illegal. We did our normal field-goal block procedure.”
  • Rizzi: “Other than me making it rain when they had the ball, we didn’t do anything illegal.”
  • “I was a little bit taken aback by it.”
  • Background: “We had a situation where somebody yelled out a snap count and we snapped an extra point early and missed the first extra point,” Arians said on Sirius XM NFL Radio. Snap from Aaron Brewer was high.
  • Of Cardinals coach Bruce Arians: “To be honest with you, I don’t know which of the three he was talking about, because he missed three.” Zing!
  • Says it was “great job” by Jordan Phillips to penetrate A gap to block extra point. Says he loved all guys out front blocking for Walt Aikens to return it for two-point defensive conversion.
  • Rizzi says Dolphins watch all two-point defensive conversions around the NFL to try to learn from them.
  • Said Walt Aikens downing punt on the Cardinals’ 1-yard line is something they work on two or three times a week. “It was a great play by Walt.”
  • Says Cardinals have two ace edge rushers on the final FG, Justin Bethel and Patrick Peterson, which made Rizzi sweat some. Both are Pro Bowl players. “There definitely was pressure there.”

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