Former first-round pick Stephone Anthony: ‘I have to become starter’ for Dolphins

Stephone Anthony is trying to get his career back on track. (Getty Images)

DAVIE — Stephone Anthony was a first-round pick just three years ago and he’s only 25, but there’s a sense that he’s already running out of time.

The NFL is turbulent, and things change quickly. Anthony was one of the most promising rookies in the league for the Saints, then found himself shipped to the Dolphins for a fifth-round pick last year and is fighting for a job this offseason. He’s battling a rookie, among others, for one of Miami’s starting linebacker spots and he knows it’s a critical point in his career.

“Before I can do anything else,” Anthony said, “I have to become a starter.”

That’s a key step toward righting his career, and he’s in a good position to do it.

While Kiko Alonso and Raekwon McMillan can be marked down as certain starters, the rest of the Dolphins’ linebacker corps is wide open. Third-round pick Jerome Baker is likely to be in the mix, as well as undrafted scrappers Cayson Collins and Mike McCray and returning players Mike Hull and Chase Allen.

Anthony said he’s been taking snaps with the first- and second-team defense during Organized Team Activities.

He’s slightly leaner than last year, checking in at 6-foot-3 and somewhere between 235 and 240 pounds (as opposed to 245), but the most important thing is he’s far more familiar the Dolphins’ scheme than when he arrived.

Miami needed a linebacker when Lawrence Timmons deserted the team early last season and found an eager trading partner in the Saints, who had lost interest in Anthony when he wasn’t producing in their new defensive scheme. After opening with 112 tackles, two defensive scores and an all-rookie selection, he started three games in 2016 and was inactive last year while New Orleans looked to deal him.

Anthony played eight games off the bench for the Dolphins and totaled 15 tackles, plus some special teams work. He showed promise at times, but not nearly enough for the organization to exercise a 2019 option on him last month that would have paid him around $9 million.

General manager Chris Grier and vice president Mike Tannenbaum didn’t explain that decision to Anthony, but they didn’t need to.

“It was kind of what I expected,” he said. “I needed more snaps and there’s a lot that goes into it. But that’s not my job to worry about. My job is going to be to put my best foot forward.”

He’ll be an unrestricted free agent next spring, which heightens the importance of the upcoming season. A good year will put him in position for a long-term deal with Miami or somewhere else. Otherwise, he’ll probably be looking at single-year, prove-it contracts until he shows he’s worth more than that.

One factor working in his favor this season is stability. Having done his best to catch up on the Dolphins’ defense last year, he’s now had a full nine months with the team. He’s been around for all of OTAs and minicamp, plus he’ll work through training camp and the preseason. He had none of those benefits last year.

“The biggest difference is the amount of time I have and the time I’ve spent trying to learn the system and getting myself comfortable with it,” Anthony said.

Defensive coordinator Matt Burke sees that as the only barrier to Anthony being a significant contributor. He said last week, “It’s always difficult to come in the middle of the season, come from a different scheme and pick things up… But he works really hard. He works really, really hard.”

Everything’s more routine for Anthony now, including his living situation. He took up residence in a local hotel for almost a month after being traded to the Dolphins last season, but now he’s settled. That makes life easier.

It helps to have perspective, too. Going from first-round pick to castoff and now trying to climb his way back to the top hasn’t been fun, but he’s learned throughout that journey.

“I think it’s just growth, honestly,” Anthony said. “I think it’s just being in the league, going into my fourth year, understanding the game, how this game is played from the college game and just honing in and packing that information in.”

[Which undrafted rookies have impressed Dolphins defensive coordinator Matt Burke so far?]

[Who wins a race between Albert Wilson, Jakeem Grant and Kenny Stills?]

[Marjory Stoneman Douglas football team visits Dolphins practice]

Check out The Palm Beach Post‘s Miami Dolphins page on Facebook.

2018 NFL season: Ranking all 32 teams’ shot at reaching Super Bowl LIII

Carson Wentz makes the Eagles a serious threat to repeat as champions. (Getty Images)

Nobody’s in better shape than the Philadelphia Eagles as the NFL shifts toward the upcoming season.

Coming off a Super Bowl win over the Patriots, Philadelphia will get MVP candidate Carson Wentz back from knee surgery and still has giant slayer Nick Foles under contract as a contingency. As good as the Eagles were during the playoffs, there’s an upgrade coming at the most important position.

Add that to a defense that was fourth in the league in yardage and points allowed and one of the strongest run games in the NFL, and it makes them the obvious favorite going into next season. The Eagles should be able to retain the majority of their core players, most of whom are already under contract, and there’s no reason to doubt them. They won’t be playing the underdog card this season.

With much to be settled in the seven months between now and opening weekend, here’s how all 32 teams stack up:

1. Philadelphia Eagles
Even after a 13-3 season and a championship, it doesn’t seem like this team has peaked yet. The Eagles go into 2018 on top.

2. New Orleans Saints
The Saints have limitless potential on offense with Drew Brees still playing among the best in the league, and some tweaks to the defense will make them a threat to Philadelphia.

3. New England Patriots
Things aren’t going quite perfectly in New England, but this remains by far the best team in the AFC.

4. Green Bay Packers
As long as Aaron Rodgers is their quarterback, the Packers are to be feared. They’ll win a minimum of 10 games if he plays all year, which is a nice starting point.

5. Atlanta Falcons
Going 10-6 and getting in the playoffs was a decent follow up to Atlanta’s Super Bowl appearance the year before. The defense was much better, and that’s promising.

6. Minnesota Vikings
The Vikings allowed fewer points than any team in the league and have a surplus of quality quarterbacks.

7. Pittsburgh Steelers
This window looks closer to closing than New England’s. Le’Veon Bell might be on his way out, and Ben Roethlisberger turns 36 next month.

8. Los Angeles Rams
The Rams’ plus-162 point differential ranked behind only the Super Bowl participants, and everything about this team points upwardly.

9. Detroit Lions
New coach Matt Patricia inherits a team that finished one game out of the playoff field last season and has a proven quarterback in Matthew Stafford.

10. San Francisco 49ers
This is going to be a trendy playoff pick assuming San Francisco doesn’t hit any snags in re-signing Jimmy Garoppolo.

11. Carolina Panthers
Cam Newton is the best and worst thing about this team. When he’s on, he’s almost unbeatable, but his inconsistency killed Carolina last year.

12. Dallas Cowboys
The Cowboy are good, but not good enough. Another underwhelming year probably spells the end for Jason Garrett.

13. Seattle Seahawks
The pass defense in Seattle is still one of the league’s best, and that’s going to make this team competitive.

14. Jacksonville Jaguars
Jacksonville was a nice story this year, but its division will be tougher with the Colts and Texans improving in 2018.

15. Los Angeles Chargers
After an 0-4 start, they went 9-3 with losses to playoff teams New England, Jacksonville and Kansas City.

16. Houston Texans
It’s hard to say what this team would’ve been if it hadn’t suffered injuries to Deshaun Watson (six starts), J.J. Watt (five) and others.

17. Miami Dolphins
If the Dolphins can be this good, maybe a nine-win team, it will be put them on the fringe of the playoff field. They’re sixth among AFC teams on this list.

18. Tennessee Titans
There’s a lot to like with the Titans, but too many question marks to be confident in them.

19. Washington Redskins
The Redskins will be better with Alex Smith at quarterback, but he doesn’t put them over the top.

20. Buffalo Bills
Everyone thought the Bills were tanking last year, and they stunned the league with a playoff berth. It’ll be equally surprising if they get back to the postseason.

21. Baltimore Ravens
Baltimore needs to consider an extensive rebuild after going 22-26 the last three seasons and missing the playoffs each time.

22. Indianapolis Colts
Josh McDaniels looks like a good hire, but this team won’t be a winner unless Andrew Luck is fully back.

23. Kansas City Chiefs
Look for a rough first year with Patrick Mahomes taking over as the starting quarterback.

24. Oakland Raiders
The Raiders’ offense dropped off significantly last season, and their defense wasn’t particularly dependable anyway.

25. Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Jameis Winston has yet to prove he’s a franchise quarterback, and that remains Tampa Bay’s biggest problem.

26. Chicago Bears
Chicago’s defense is solid, but the offense is so awful that it doesn’t matter. Any of the teams from here on down have a chance to land the No. 1 pick in next year’s draft.

27. Cincinnati Bengals
Everything about this team is mediocre, and it seems more likely to slide than to make a big jump in 2018.

28. New York Giants
The Giants’ only decent win was an overtime escape at home against Kansas City. They were outscored by 142 points last year, and that won’t be easy to fix.

29. Denver Broncos
Unless the Broncos swoop in and sign Kirk Cousins, they’re going to be a wreck this season. Even if they get Cousins, they might not be a playoff team.

30. Arizona Cardinals
It’s a wonder the Cardinals managed to go 8-8. They give up a lot of points, they have no quarterback and they’ll have a new head coach next season.

31. New York Jets
The Jets can’t even tank well. They tried to bottom out last year, but went 5-11 and will pick sixth in the upcoming draft.

32. Cleveland Browns
After going 38-122 over the last decade, maybe the CFL would be a better option for the Browns.

[An NFL Draft solution to the Miami Dolphins’ guard problem]

[Eagles borrowed Super Bowl trick play from Dolphins’ OC]

[Dolphins WR DeVante Parker not off to great career start]

Check out The Palm Beach Post‘s Miami Dolphins page on Facebook

Dan Campbell’s season coaching Dolphins changed his career track

Former Dolphins coach Dan Campbell is on his way up. (Allen Eyestone/The Post)

LAKE BUENA VISTA—It’s an unusual path in the NFL to go from coaching tight ends to being the head coach, then returning to tight ends and starting the climb all over again. For former Dolphins coach Dan Campbell, that route has provided tremendous opportunities.

Miami put Campbell in charge after firing Joe Philbin four games into the 2015 season and he opened with back-to-back wins before ending up at 5-7 as interim coach. His three months in the head chair served him well, though, and he’s now an emerging offensive coordinator candidate in the league.

“I’ve been blessed,” said Campbell, who coaches tight ends for New Orleans and is part of the staff selected to coach the NFL in Sunday’s Pro Bowl. “Steve Ross and Mike Tannenbaum gave me the opportunity, and I’m forever grateful for that because it really opens your eyes to everything that goes on at that position.

“As a position coach, you don’t know all the ins and out and whats and whys, but when you’re the head coach, you get exposed to every bit of that. It only helps you. So to come back and be a position coach for the Saints, it allows you to look at the game a different way and you want to coach to help the head coach. In your head, you can put yourself in his seat and go, ‘Ah, I understand why he’s doing that.’”

The job as interim coach with the Dolphins was initially more difficult and extensive than Campbell realized, though he got a better handle on it as the season progressed. The biggest benefit, other than getting his name out there, was getting a better grasp of what his former and future bosses deal with on a daily basis. That’s enabled him to be a better assistant to New Orleans head coach Sean Payton.

“I don’t care who you are, if you talk to any first-time head coach, they can say all they want but they don’t know what they’re getting into,” Campbell said. “’There’s little things always popping up. I bet half of them didn’t realize you have to worry about the seating chart on the plane. You know what I mean?

“There’s all kinds of little things that happen, but I got more comfortable with it and by the end of the year I felt pretty good about what I was trying to do.”

Campbell, 41, said he is interviewing for the Vikings’ offensive coordinator vacancy Tuesday. He said being in a role that allows him to call plays has been a dream of his since the day he decided to become a coach.

He went to the Saints shortly after the Dolphins turned him down for the permanent job and went with Adam Gase instead. Sean Payton gave him the title of Associate Head Coach in addition to overseeing tight ends.

After six seasons with the Dolphins, who gave him his start as an intern in 2010 under Tony Sparano, Campbell landed with one of the best-run organizations in the league. Payton and general manager Mickey Loomis have been with New Orleans for a decade-plus, and the Saints were one of the best teams in the NFC this year at 11-5.

What he’s observed in New Orleans is a strong blueprint for him if he ultimately lands a head-coaching job.

“What Sean and Mickey have done out there is pretty phenomenal,” Campbell said. “You feel like everybody in that building is going the same direction and everybody is there to help the head coach have success, from the personnel department to Mickey to myself to the other coaches. It’s been good.”

[Dolphins WR Jarvis Landry bubbling with happiness as he heads toward free agency]

[Jarvis Landry believes Dolphins coach Adam Gase wants him back]

[Dolphins legend Don Shula asks for patience for coach Adam Gase]

Check out The Palm Beach Post‘s Miami Dolphins page on Facebook

2018 NFL Draft: What picks do the Miami Dolphins have this year?

The Dolphins took Ted Ginn at No. 9 in 2007. (Getty Images)

[Updated March 15, 2018 after compensatory picks were awarded and trades involving Jarvis Landry, Robert Quinn and Daniel Kilgore]

As the Dolphins ramp up their preparation for the 2018 draft with the Senior Bowl coming up this month, they currently have eight picks.

Miami has its own pick in each round except for the fifth, which it sent to the Saints in September in exchange for linebacker Stephone Anthony. In addition to its six base selections, the team has a fourth rounder from the Jay Ajayi traded and an extra pick in the seventh from Tampa Bay.

When the Dolphins shipped Ajayi to the Eagles this season, they got a fourth-round pick that Philadelphia had previously acquired from the Vikings. The first 20 draft slots in each round are determined by regular-season record, and the remaining 12 are filled based on how far those teams go in the playoffs.

The seventh-round pick from the Buccaneers came from a trade last year when the teams swapped spots in the seventh round, with the Dolphins moving down from No. 223 to No. 237.

These selections can change if the team makes any trades between now and the draft, which is April 26-28. As of now, here is the Dolphins’ stock of 2018 draft picks:

First round: No. 11 overall
Second round: No. 42 overall
Third round: No. 73 overall
Fourth round: No. 123 overall, No. 131
Fifth round: No selection (traded to New Orleans for Stephone Anthony)
Sixth round: No. 209 overall
Seventh round: No. 227 overall, No. 229 overall

[Ryan Tannehill’s 2018 return from knee injury at forefront of Dolphins’ minds]

[Miami Dolphins find a hidden giant in offensive lineman Jesse Davis]

[Longtime tight end Anthony Fasano weighs his NFL future]

Check out The Palm Beach Post‘s Miami Dolphins page on Facebook

Dolphins LB Stephone Anthony making an impression for next season

Stephone Anthony could get increased playing time the next two weeks. (AP)

DAVIE—One under-the-radar talent who could make an impact for the Dolphins over the final two games, and possibly beyond, is linebacker Stephone Anthony.

Anthony was a late-September trade acquisition from New Orleans who didn’t appear much in games his first two months, but the team is impressed by his work on the practice field and has upped his playing time lately.

“I’m trying to stay consistent in my work and show up every day,” Anthony said. “It’s an audition for everybody. We all need to come out and put some good ball on tape and just get the sour taste out of our mouths.”

Anthony played 32 percent of the snaps at Buffalo, his most extended run of the season other than the Denver game, and could be in line for more time in Sunday’s game at Kansas City.

With the playoffs a huge longshot for the Dolphins, the remaining games give them a chance to test out players like Anthony against opponents who have a lot at stake and are still playing their starters.

Miami coach Adam Gase has said he won’t call it a season until the team is officially eliminated, but he could be inclined to play Anthony more anyway.

“He’s got a good grasp of the defense and he’s in the mix of trying to make plays all the time,” Gase said. “He’s involved in a lot of tackles. I feel like he brings really great energy to our defense. I love the way he practices. When he goes onto the field on Sundays, he’s a guy that you can tell he loves being out there and he’s excited to get to play.”

Gase and defensive coordinator Matt Burke have had nothing but good reviews for Anthony since his arrival. He has nine tackles in 88 defensive plays this season.

The change of teams was welcome for Anthony, who clearly had no future with New Orleans. The Saints took him with the 31st overall pick in 2015, but he fell out of favor this year.

He had an ankle injury in the preseason and never appeared in a game before the Saints dealt him to Miami for a fifth-round pick. Immediately upon landing with the Dolphins, Anthony said he was healthy and played against New Orleans in Week 4.

It was a relief to go to a new team, Anthony said, but his approach with Miami hasn’t been any different than it was with the Saints.

“My whole mindset has been to be myself and try to get better every day,” he said. “Whatever it was in New Orleans, it is what it is. My job was to come here and put my best foot forward.

“I’ve been the same guy, honestly. Perception was created about me that I was this or that, but truly I was just myself. I’m going to keep moving forward. I can’t control what people say about me.”

He does, however, have some input on how the Dolphins view him as they evaluate their personnel for 2018. A strong finish to this season would help his chances of securing a significant role going forward.

[Opposing quarterbacks are having the time of their lives facing the Dolphins this year]

[Snap count breakdown from Dolphins vs. Bills]

[Reshad Jones is the Dolphins’ only Pro Bowl selection]

Check out The Palm Beach Post‘s Miami Dolphins page on Facebook

Post staff predictions: Reporters split down middle for Dolphins-Saints

What are our Dolphins writers expecting on Sunday when the Fins and New Orleans Saints square off at Wembley Stadium in London?

Miami Dolphins linebacker Austin Spitler (53) and Miami Dolphins defensive end Vaughn Martin (90) strip the ball from New Orleans Saints running back Mark Ingram (22) in the first quarter at Sun Life Stadium in Miami Gardens, Florida on August 29, 2013. (Allen Eyestone/The Palm Beach Post)

STAFF PREDICTIONS

Joe Schad, Beat writer

The Saints defense is vulnerable. You can throw on the Saints. You can run on the Saints. This game presents an opportunity for both Jay Ajayi and Jarvis Landry. But New Orleans can score big. Like always. How will Byron Maxwell and Xavien Howard hold up against rising receiving star Michael Thomas? I’ll take the team that’s been in London since Monday.

Saints 28, Dolphins 27


Jason Lieser, Beat writer

The British are in for a treat as the NFL sends over two teams that aren’t especially concerned with defense. Drew Brees and Jay Cutler will get plenty of chances to fire it down the field. Both teams need the game, too, with New Orleans starting off 1-2 and the Dolphins at risk of falling to that mark with a loss. Look for Miami to get one it badly needs, salvaging this brutal three-week travel stretch with two wins.

Dolphins 34, Saints 30


Hal Habib, Beat writer

That Saints QB worries me, especially zeroing in on a Dolphins secondary that gives receivers as much cushion as the Atlantic is wide. Plus, the Dolphins seem intent on convincing themselves they’re not road weary from a ridiculous amount of travel. Finally, Jay Cutler & Co.’s misfirings make me wonder if they are ready for a shootout.

Saints 28, Dolphins 24


Dave George, Columnist

Looking for a big Dolphins bounceback game here against a Saints defense that has been able to hold opponents down just one time so far in three games. Can it be done? Well, Adam Gase called last October’s loss to Tennessee a horrible offensive performance, and Miami rolled Pittsburgh 30-15 the following week.

Dolphins 29, Saints 27

***

[RELATED: Photo gallery from Dolphins practice on Friday]

Dolphins vs. Saints: How do they match up in Week 4?

How do the Miami Dolphins and New Orleans Saints match up for Sunday’s NFL Week 4 tilt at Wembley Stadium in London?

Jay Ajayi #23 of the Miami Dolphins reacts against the New York Jets during the first half of an NFL game at MetLife Stadium on September 24, 2017 in East Rutherford, New Jersey. (Photo by Rich Schultz/Getty Images)

When the Dolphins have the ball…

Miami passing offense (21st in NFL) vs. New Orleans pass defense (30th in NFL)

The Dolphins should rebound fairly well from its disastrous 190-yard performance in New York against a Saints passing defense which is among the worst in the league so far this season. Despite Jay Cutler throwing for a modest 225 yards in the season opener against the Chargers, the Dolphins ran a much more efficient offense, resulting in — you know — some actual points. Coming off two lackluster weeks through the air, efficient as one of them may have been, it’s hard to have a ton of confidence in the play-calling or the ability to move the ball. Edge: New Orleans

Miami rushing offense (28th) vs. New Orleans rush defense (24th)

Was last week’s 16-yard performance from Jay Ajayi a fluke or cause for concern? Well, let’s just say he’s earned the benefit of the doubt. Ajayi opened the season rushing for 122 yards against the Chargers, so there shouldn’t be much concern about a drop-off from last year. The New Orleans run defense is respectable, but already has surrendered big totals to the Vikings, Patriots and Panthers so far this season, allowing each of the three to eclipse 100 yards on the ground. Expect Ajayi, who will be playing in his home country on Sunday, to bounce back from what may have been the worst game of his young career. Edge: Miami

[RELATED: Photo gallery from Dolphins practice on Friday]


When the Saints have the ball…

New Orleans passing offense (6th) vs Miami pass defense (28th)

The Dolphins pass defense has been an unpleasant surprise this season, giving up 331 yards and a touchdown to Philip Rivers of the Chargers and 249 yards and a score to the Jets’ Josh McCown. Drew Brees will provide a major test for a unit needing desperately to get back on track. Brees has thrown for 867 yards through three games, tossing six touchdown passes and not surrendering an interception. He has also been accurate, completing 68.5 percent of his 111 attempts this year. Surrounded by big-play weapons in the form of Michael Thomas and Ted Ginn, Brees should have a big day against Miami’s secondary. Edge: New Orleans

New Orleans rushing offense (18th) vs Miami rush defense (5th)

Miami’s run defense fell back down to Earth last week after limiting the Chargers to 44 yards, allowing 103 to the struggling Jets. Even though they surrendered over 100 yards, the Jets did run the ball 34 times, so it was still a respectable showing from a unit that ranked at the bottom of the league last season. With the expected addition of Lawrence Timmons, the run-stopping unit will get some much-needed reinforcements, and, despite facing the talented Mark Ingram, the Dolphins should be able to keep New Orleans’ run game in check. Edge: Miami


Special teams

Cody Parkey followed up his dramatic, heroic Dolphins debut with … a missed, meaningless extra point. All was not lost for the Dolphins’ special-teams unit, though, as Matt Haack’s busy, seven-punt day saw him net an average of 47.6 yards per kick, including an impressive 64 yard boot. Saints kick Will Lutz has been inconsistent from beyond 40 yards this season, making only three of five attempts from that distance this season. Thomas Morstead is a respectable veteran punter, but the Dolphins’ young special-teams unit has a slight advantage. Edge: Miami

Dolphins coach Adam Gase warns players not to complain about schedule

Gase gave a stern warning Sunday. (Allen Eyestone/The Post)

NEW YORK—Adam Gase is cool with pretty much anything Dolphins players say, an essential element of the way he runs the team, but there’s one thing he won’t abide. Anyone who complains about the difficulties of this year’s schedule does so at significant risk.

The Dolphins were set to play this three-week stretch in Los Angeles, New York and London either way, but it was made more challenging by the threat of Hurricane Irma. Miami’s original opener, a home game against Tampa Bay, was rescheduled for November and that decision eliminated the team’s bye week.

The Dolphins spent the entire week of preparation for the Chargers at a hotel in Oxnard, Calif., and have another unusual week in front of them now. The team will fly to London on Thursday, practice Friday and hope the players have adjusted to the five-hour time difference by Sunday’s game against New Orleans, which will kick off at 9:30 a.m. Eastern.

“We’ve talked to the right people as far as how we want to sleep, nutrition, what we need to do to combat flying as much as we have so far,” Gase said today. “It’s really about following what everybody is advising our players to do. It’s just whether or not guys want to do it that way. You can’t hold everybody’s hand. At some point you have to be a man and do it right and be a pro athlete. Guys that want to do it right are usually the ones that have success. The guys that don’t, don’t end up lasting very long.”

No players used that excuse after getting pounded by New York, but the defeat was so jarring that it sent everyone looking for an explanation. Gase would rather hear his players admit they got clobbered, though, than listen to them blame it on the schedule.

“All I know is we’re going to line up on Sunday and play,” he said Sunday. “So if somebody has an issue with that, they better check their profession.”

That schedule, by the way, doesn’t exactly let up. In addition to not having a bye week, the Dolphins will still have to play six of their remaining 13 games on the road. That’s a result, in part, of them giving up a home game as part of the deal to play in London.

There is only one instance in which Miami plays consecutive games at Hard Rock Stadium this year: Week 13 against Denver and Week 14 against the Patriots.

[Opinion: Protesting Miami Dolphins use their platform better than Donald Trump used his]

[Cameron Wake baffled by Dolphins’ big loss to New York]

[Grading the Dolphins in a 20-6 loss to the Jets]

Check out The Palm Beach Post‘s Miami Dolphins page on Facebook

Gase says he is sick of ‘garbage’ offense and will make changes

DAVIE – Adam Gase called Miami’s 20-6 loss to the New York Jets on Sunday “just a lot of bad football” and referenced last year’s 2016 loss at Tennessee as the last time the Dolphins’ offense has been this off.

Miami Dolphins head coach Adam Gase on the sidelines in the second quarter against the New York Jets at MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, N.J., on Sunday, Sept. 24, 2017. The Jets won, 20-6. (Al Diaz/Miami Herald/TNS)

You may remember that two starting offensive linemen were cut a couple of days after that 30-17 loss in Nashville. The good news is that Miami immediately went on a six-game winning streak at that point to save the season.

“That’s more mental errors than we’ve had the last two years,” Gase said of Sunday’s punishing loss at MetLife Stadium in New Jersey. “I’ll find the guys that want to do it right and those are the guys that are going to play.”

Asked if personnel changes were coming, Gase said “Possible.”

Miami was 1-of-12 on third down against the Jets and never got anything going on the ground. Jay Cutler was not sharp in his second Dolphins start since taking over the injured Ryan Tannehill, misfiring often on a 26-for-44 passing day and doing a fair amount of his throwing on the run.

Asked how he thought Cutler played, Gase said, “Not as well as I’d like him to. He took a couple of vicious shots early. Thirty-four (Cutler’s age) is a little different than when you’re 25.”

Gase tried and failed to get his hurry-up plan working on offense in 2016, his rookie season as Dolphins coach. It seems no closer to working now that he’s working with Cutler instead of Tannehill. Miami ranked 24th in the NFL last year offensively and after two games in 2017 ranks 32nd in total yards. Dead last.

“I have some ideas,” Gase said, “but it’s not really a hurry-up offense when you snap the ball at two seconds (on the play clock) every time.

“I’m upset about the way our offense played. I’m tired of watching for two years this garbage…We’ll make the proper adjustments, probably make some changes. We’ll figure out what we’ve got to do and get that thing rolling. I’ve been watching it for two years and it hasn’t worked.”

Gase had no comment about a CBSSports.com report that suspended linebacker Lawrence Timmons visited Pittsburgh during Miami’s Week 1 bye and attended a practice session with his old team, the Steelers.

The coach also steered clear of the national anthem protest issue that dominated pregame activities across the league on Sunday.

“I was focused on the game,” Gase said. “I’m not going to comment about any of that stuff. I’m a football coach. I just worry about trying to win games on Sunday.”

Miami plays the New Orleans Saints in London next Sunday.

 

 

 

How does London Bridge terror attack impact Miami Dolphins’ plans?

London Bridge was attacked June 3. (Getty Images)

DAVIE–Last week’s terror attack in London caught the world’s attention, and it resonated with the Miami Dolphins in part because they’re playing a game at Wembley Stadium this fall.

The NFL is staging four games in London this season, and Miami will make its fifth appearance there when it faces the Saints on Oct. 1. The team is likely to be there Thursday through Sunday, and coach Adam Gase said he’s still considering precautions.
Continue reading “How does London Bridge terror attack impact Miami Dolphins’ plans?”