DAVIE–Dolphins defensive coordinator Matt Burke was adamant last week that his side of the ball has plenty of areas that need improvement, and that was evident in last weekend’s 31-28 win over the Jets.
Miami continues to have a particularly hard time against the pass, ranking 17th in that category at 226 yards per game. Jets quarterback Josh McCown had 148 yards and two touchdown passes in the first quarter.
As Burke sifts through that game and prepares for Thursday’s visit to Baltimore, here are his thoughts on the Dolphins’ defense:
–Burke isn’t sure yet whether defensive end Andre Branch (groin) will be available. The Dolphins also aren’t saying whether it would be veteran William Hayes or first-round pick Charles Harris in his place.
–He said it was tough saying goodbye to cornerback Byron Maxwell today. Burke felt good about their relationship.
–Regarding Cameron Wake’s strong start to the season, Burke says “it’s crazy to be around him” because of his impeccable work ethic.
–The Dolphins were high on cornerback Cordrea Tankersley from the start because of his speed. What they need to see next is route recognition.
–Burke likes offensive tackle Jesse Davis in the goal-line defense because “he’s a big dude.” It became a necessity Sunday because Miami dressed just three defensive tackles.
–Linebacker Rey Maualuga has thoroughly impressed Burke after coming out of free agency in August. “He’s been great,” Burke said. “He’s had four good games.” When Maualuga signed, Burke told him to focus on being healthy and if he could be active for the Titans game, that was a reasonable goal.
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