Who are Miami Dolphins’ leaders? Adam Gase calls out players to ‘take control of this thing’

Adam Gase says it’s time for more leaders to emerge in the locker room. (Allen Eyestone/The Post)

DAVIE — The man who once said there’s more leadership on the Dolphins than people think has changed his mind.

As the Dolphins enter their offseason, coach Adam Gase has been lecturing players about the need for more leaders to emerge in the locker room.

He called the situation a work in progress, then put considerably more emphasis on the “work” than the “progress” thus far.

“It’s never going to be the way we really want it and the way we keep talking about it until guys really take control of this thing,” Gase said. “There are a lot of things I can do to make things the way we need it, but at the end of the day, player accountability, making sure that everybody is on the same page, you need your leaders to step up, you need them to be vocal, you need them to actually do their part in a leadership role.”

That’s a departure from what Gase said in the summer of 2016, five months into the job.

“The first thing that I learned is there’s more (leadership) than I think a lot of people gave guys credit for,” he said at the time. “I think a little bit of it is, if you let their personalities come out, you’re going to see more guys take that leadership role. I think we’ve had a lot of guys step up, and if somebody gets out of line, they get straightened up pretty quick. It’s something that not a lot of things have gotten back to me, which is great.”

Leadership is a bit of a buzzword in Davie, of course, following the Bullygate saga of 2013. When Gase arrived, players were given more latitude to express themselves than under Joe Philbin, but it’s obvious today that despite all the assurances from players that there are leaders on this team, Gase sees it differently and says coaches can only do so much.

“The hardest thing about that is it’s exhausting,” Gase said. “That’s why it’s hard. That’s why there’s not a lot of great leaders when you look at players. There are a lot less than you would think.”

Although Gase didn’t name names, you’d have to think Peyton Manning was in the back of his mind as he discussed the subject. Manning was renowned for setting an example with exhaustive study habits that challenged everyone around him to be on their game.

“I was around enough really good players and Hall of Fame players that I watched them do it, and I watched what they looked like after the season,” Gase said. “It takes a lot of effort and it takes a lot out of them, because not only are they doing that, but they have a job to do and they have to play well. We need our veteran leaders to step up and really take handle of this locker room this year.”

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