Frank Gore will be 35, but here’s why Miami Dolphins don’t really care

Ex-Hurricane Frank Gore, then with the Indianapolis Colts, runs against the Dolphins. (Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images)

(Note: This continues a series in Daily Dolphin spotlighting members of the team individually. In addition to reliving highlights and lowlights of the past season for each, we’ll provide analysis and criticism, plus take a look at how each player fits — or doesn’t fit — into the team’s plans for 2018.)

RB Frank Gore

Height, weight: 5-9, 212

College: Miami

Age: Will be 35 at the start of the season

Experience: Entering 14th season, first with the Dolphins

Acquired: As a free agent from Indianapolis

Contract: Due to earn $1.1 million this season

Pro Football Focus rank: 17th out of 58

In 2017

Stats: Rushing — 961 yards, 3.7 average, 3 TDs. Receiving — 29 catches, 245 yards, 1 TD

Notable moments: Carried 36 times for 130 yards at Buffalo. It was the most carries ever by a running back 34 or older

Straight talk: With Damien Williams leaving and Kenyan Drake still arriving in terms of the big stage, the Dolphins made a wise move in bringing Frank Gore back to Miami.

Gore will be 35 this season, but it was predictable that coach Adam Gase warned against getting too caught up in that, of course.

“It’s irrelevant,” Gase said. “He’s a different dude.”

Don’t believe it? Gregg Doyel of The Indianapolis Star, in a column criticizing the Colts for letting Gore walk, revealed that in that game in Buffalo in which Gore had 130 yards, he broke a thumb. The Colts suggested season-ending surgery to insert a pin.

“I’m a football player,” Gore said. “I’m playing.”

Indianapolis’ next game was a Thursday nighter against the Broncos, so four days later, Gore was at it again, accounting for 67 yards from scrimmage. It’s that kind of drive that has allowed him to play 112 consecutive games, most by any active running back.

By keeping in terrific shape, Gore has managed 12 straight seasons with at least 1,200 yards from scrimmage. The only backs with more carries than his 3,226 are Emmitt Smith (all-time leader at 4,409), Walter Payton, Curtis Martin and Jerome Bettis. None has a better per-carry average than Gore’s 4.4.

With his stocky build and powerful legs, Gore has been an effective inside runner. He tied for 10th in the league last year with 49 carries for first downs, so perhaps third-and-1 will cease to be an automatic passing play. Not to mention that when Ryan Tannehill does throw with Gore in the game, not only can Gore catch, he’s exceptional at pass protection. 

Gase and Gore were together in 2008, when Gase served as an offensive assistant on the 49ers.

“It’s been 10 years since we were together,” Gase said. “I mean it seems like forever. The guy looks exactly the same.”

Prospects for 2018

While the Dolphins are counting on Drake to be the featured back, Gore isn’t being brought in strictly as an aging mentor to the young guy.

“We’ll figure it out,” Gase said of the workload. “This is no different than what we were kind of doing with Damien and Kenyan last year. I mean it’s a long season. We got caught in a couple of situations last year where Kenyan was the only guy we had and he had to take the majority of the carries. Really, that’s not what we want over a 16-game season. That’s going to be tough. We’ll make sure that we spread this thing out well. We’ll use both of those guys the right way.”


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Dolphins coach Adam Gase more confident than ever that he’s got a winning roster

Kenny Stills and the Dolphins’ offense are looking to snap back from a low-scoring 2017 season. (Allen Eyestone/The Post)

DAVIE — Dolphins coach Adam Gase emerged from free agency defiant amid widespread criticism of the team’s offseason and claimed he had a winning roster.

Miami had just finished unloading Mike Pouncey, Ndamukong Suh and Jarvis Landry, as well as their massive salaries, and didn’t make any flashy signings to replace them. Still, particularly on offense, this group of personnel was closest to what Gase envisioned when he took the job in January 2016.

[RELATED: Don’t miss our exclusive photos from Dolphins OTAs in Davie]

He’s had a while, including the last four weeks of offseason practices, to reevaluate whether he was right about that and he’s now more confident than ever. Watching Ryan Tannehill work behind a remodeled offensive line with several new skill players confirmed for Gase that his offense is on track for a big comeback this season.

“I think so,” he said. “I see a lot of the guys doing things the way we need them done. I like the way that we’re handling the mental game of it as well. Things are moving fast. We’re reacting very quickly.

“Really, it’s going to come down to how we handle training camp when it starts to get hot (and) the preseason games. You’re always going to have an injury. Who’s going to step up and fill those voids? We’ve still got a long ways to go. The season is a long ways away. We’ve got a lot of work ahead of us and we’ll just keep grinding.”

Tannehill is the biggest difference, taking command and making plays that were simply beyond the capacity of Jay Cutler and Matt Moore. Nothing makes Gase more confident than that.

While those outside the building have always had doubts about Tannehill, who has yet to produce an above-average season since being picked No. 8 overall in 2012, Gase has been unwavering in his belief that this is a winning quarterback.

He immediately bought into Tannehill’s ability as a dual-threat playmaker and thought all he needed was to be emboldened by a coach who pushed him into being more of a leader. He appears to have adopted some of Gase’s personality, and his past year and a half on the sideline made him fully fluent in Gase’s system as well.

Watching him operate that offense over the last four weeks heightened Gase’s optimism about the upcoming season.

“He’s gotten better,” he said of Tannehill. “We’ve been working (on) a lot of pocket movement things and getting him comfortable in that aspect. It doesn’t seem like he’s really changed much as far as worrying about bodies around him. He’s out there playing. He’s throwing the ball well. You can tell he’s spent a lot of time with these skill guys in the offseason.”

Almost everyone Tannehill will be throwing to is new to him. Among the main pass-catchers, only receivers Kenny Stills and DeVante Parker were playing a significant role in the offense when Tannehill went down in 2016.

He worked frequently with Albert Wilson, Danny Amendola, A.J. Derby and rookie tight end Mike Gesicki in player-run passing sessions this offseason.

“I feel right now that we legitimately have two groups of receivers that can play at a high level for us,” Tannehill said. “So if we want to sub somebody out and keep fresh legs in there, or if someone goes down, I don’t feel like there’s really going to be much of a drop off.”

Amendola and Wilson were both as good in Organized Team Activities as Gase anticipated, and Gesicki was a breath of fresh air at a position that’s hurt Miami for a long time. That said, there’s no certainty they’ll be able to perform like that against live defenses.

Is Wilson prepared to be used all over the field? Is Amendola going to be another overpriced, past-his-prime signing like Julius Thomas, Lawrence Timmons and Mario Williams? Are there ever any certainties when it comes to rookies?

Kenyan Drake has to prove himself as a versatile, every-down running back, something hasn’t done as a collegian or pro. Even if Drake thrives in that role, the Dolphins still need something out of 35-year-old Frank Gore or fourth-round pick Kalen Ballage (preferably both of them).

On the o-line, San Francisco castoff Daniel Kilgore takes over for Pouncey, Jesse Davis is a new starter at right guard and Laremy Tunsil looks to rebound from a frustrating season in which he was beaten or blocked the wrong man too many times.

And that’s just the offense.

With more than a month between now and training camp, and another month-plus until the season begins, Gase isn’t fretting over any of those things. For now, he likes what he sees.

“We’re gelling pretty good,” he said. “They like to practice against each other, they like playing together. You can tell there’s a lot of energy out there. I think that’s really one of the things that’s going to be improvement for us. We kind of lost that a little bit last year. This year we’re looking like we’re headed in the right direction.”

[Dolphins left tackle Laremy Tunsil moves past ‘horrible taste’ of last season, poised for comeback]

[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.

Dolphins coach Adam Gase high on QB David Fales, but remains undecided

David Fales still has quite a fight ahead of him to win the backup quarterback job. (AP)

DAVIE — The way everything has lined up for quarterback David Fales this offseason, it’ll be a surprise if anyone else claims the Dolphins’ backup quarterback job.

It’s a pivotal career opportunity for Fales after bouncing around the last four years. Miami coach Adam Gase is adamant that he’s going to pick from among Fales, Brock Osweiler and Bryce Petty rather than call a free agent veteran like he did with Jay Cutler a year ago.

[RELATED: Don’t miss our exclusive photos from Dolphins OTAs in Davie]

Part of the reason he’s been so confident about moving forward with this group is what he’s seen from Fales over the past several months.

“I think after that last game, I was feeling good,” Gase said Thursday, referring to Fales’ passable performance in the season finale against Buffalo.

When he brought in offensive coordinator Dowell Loggains, who coached Fales in Chicago, he confirmed what Gase thought. Fales looked like a much more polished quarterback than he’d been earlier in his career and appeared ready to be Ryan Tannehill’s backup.

Gase was encouraged enough by what he’d seen and what Loggains thought that he didn’t think it was necessary for the Dolphins to make any bold moves with quarterbacks in the recent free agency period.

“We felt like (keeping Fales) was a good first step for us and really we wanted to see how everything played out, because between free agency and the draft, you just never know how things are going to shake out,” Gase said. “By adding Brock and then Bryce, I think it’s been a good competition.

“That’s really what we’re going to be doing going into training camp. We’re just going to let those guys compete and see who wins out.”

As solid as Fales was last year and as well he’s performed in offseason practices, Gase isn’t installing him as the backup after the end of Organized Team Activities. He plans to keep the position battle open well into August.

“Right now I don’t even want to go in that direction yet because I don’t have a great answer for it,” Gase said. “I want to see guys play in preseason games. I want to see kind of how training camp goes. That’s a lot of time there and there’s a lot of football to be played. I want those guys all competing. I’m hoping those guys all have the same mentality that they’re the guy to beat.”

[Dolphins left tackle Laremy Tunsil moves past ‘horrible taste’ of last season, poised for comeback]

[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.

Dolphins rookie TE Mike Gesicki rips through offseason practices

Gesicki (86) is the highest-drafted Dolphins tight end since 1974. (Allen Eyestone/The Post)

DAVIE — The Dolphins’ top two picks in this year’s NFL Draft appear to be as good as everyone thought they were. That’s great when it comes to safety Minkah Fitzpatrick, but it’s essential with tight end Mike Gesicki.

Gesicki, the second-rounder from Penn State, is immediately on the spot to earn the starting job and add something to the offense that Miami’s been missing for years. Tight end has been a hugely problematic position for this team, which hasn’t had a good one since Charles Clay in 2014.

At 6-foot-6, 249 pounds with exceptional athleticism, Gesicki could be the trend-breaker. He’s got great speed for the position and presents a big target in the red zone with his leaping ability. The main question has been whether he can handle everything thrown at him mentally at this level and master the playbook, and he seems to be progressing well in that department.

“He’s had some really good days,” coach Adam Gase said at the end of Organized Team Activities. “(Wednesday) was a good example where we had a two-minute drill and we had some things in the red zone where he was able to take advantage of a couple matchups that he had.

[RELATED: Don’t miss our exclusive photos from Dolphins OTAs in Davie]

“He’s aggressive to the ball and he can make plays. He’s a big man that can run and has really good hands. It’s been fun to watch him kind of develop and trying to learn this offense. He puts a lot of time into it. He’s trying to be one of those guys that can play fast.”
Gase added that Gesicki’s “been good” with the mental side of the game as well. He’s been putting in extra study time with fellow rookie tight end Durham Smythe in their hotel room. The players take turn calling out plays for the other one to draw up on a whiteboard.

Gesicki isn’t much of a blocker and he’s working on that, but the Dolphins didn’t draft him to block. He caught 105 balls for 1,242 yards and 14 touchdowns in his final two college seasons, and that’s what they’re looking for out of him.

In the last three seasons, no Miami tight end has caught more than 41 passes and the position has been a glaring void in the offense. Julius Thomas’ season of that many catches, 388 yards and three touchdowns in 2017 was better than the Dolphins got out of Jordan Cameron and Dion Sims before him.

It’s not totally surprising given how little emphasis the organization has put on tight ends in the draft. Prior to this year, the Dolphins hadn’t selected one in the first three rounds since Michael Egnew in 2012. Gesicki is the third-highest picked tight end in franchise history.

[Dolphins left tackle Laremy Tunsil moves past ‘horrible taste’ of last season, poised for comeback]

[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.

Dolphins left tackle Laremy Tunsil ready to move on from ‘horrible taste’ of 2017 season

Laremy Tunsil is ready for a comeback . (Allen Eyestone/The Post)

DAVIE — Nobody needs to tell Laremy Tunsil last season didn’t go well for him. It’s been on his mind for months.

In his move from left guard back to his natural spot at left tackle, he struggled with missed assignments, inconsistency and just straight-up getting beat by defensive ends. The Dolphins’ coaching staff thought it’d be an easy transition for him, but that’s one of the toughest positions in the game regardless of how familiar a player is with it.

Tunsil’s not hiding from how poorly he played, but he’s not going to stay stuck on it, either.

“It was a bad taste, a horrible taste,” he said today when Miami wrapped up its offseason practices. “I just wanted to improve my game. That’s the main thing I was dwelling on. I know I could’ve been better.

“Now I’m here and it’s a new season, new person. Let’s get it.”

[RELATED: Don’t miss our exclusive photos from Dolphins OTAs in Davie]

Burying the past is probably for the best, and Tunsil’s right to think of this as a fresh start.

He spent a lot of time analyzing film of his mistakes in the offseason, zeroing in on his worst games and thinking through the corrections. New offensive line coach Jeremiah Washburn has been an uplifting influence on him after a chaotic year for that unit last season and he’s intent on keeping everything positive for Tunsil. He’s also got a new wingman at left guard in Josh Sitton, a four-time Pro Bowler with a decade of experience.

All of those elements are working together to set Tunsil up for a bounce-back year.

“I just wanted to work on my overall game: pass, set, run game — anything,” he said. “I just wanted to be a complete player.”

Sitton’s presence, both as a mentor and as a better player than anyone Miami had at left guard, is gives the Dolphins good cause for optimism with Tunsil. If he stays healthy, he’ll make Tunsil’s job easier and steady the line.

Sitton said last month he’s eager to help Tunsil and their relationship is already off to a good start. They’ve spoken extensively throughout the offseason, and Sitton is setting the example the Dolphins want Tunsil to follow.

“The guy you’re playing next to, you see how he operates,” coach Adam Gase said. “You see how he works in meeting rooms and then comes on the field and works individually. That’s the thing I’ve been most impressed with.

“I think (Tunsil) being able to talk to him every day, as far as, ‘Hey, what do we want to do here?’ or ‘How do we want to set on these pass rushes?’ — those two guys working in tandem is going to be a big thing for us.”

The Dolphins’ overhaul of their offensive hinges largely on whether Tunsil is able to establish himself as the top-quality left tackle they envisioned when they drafted him 13th overall in 2016.

They started him at left guard because Branden Albert was at left tackle, then offloaded Albert to Jacksonville to make room for Tunsil’s triumphant return to the position last season. It didn’t go as planned.

“I never assumed it was going to be easy,” said Tunsil, who was a left tackle his entire career prior to his rookie season. “Playing left tackle at the highest level of football, I never thought it’d be easy.

“It’s very natural, but it’s the highest point of the game. You get what I’m saying? You’re going against some of the best athletes in the game. It’s always going to be a competition every week.”

Now they’ll line him and Sitton up on the left side next to new center Daniel Kilgore, a much more affordable option than three-time Pro Bowl pick Mike Pouncey. Jesse Davis is done jumping around and has settled in at right guard next to tackle Ja’Wuan James. Those moves won’t matter much, though, unless Tunsil turns it around.

[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.

Practice report: Miami Dolphins close out Organized Team Activities

The Dolphins held their final day of offseason practices this morning. (Allen Eyestone/The Post)

DAVIE — The Dolphins are in the practice bubble this morning for the final session of Organized Team Activities and they’ll close it out with a light workout. Here are some notes from today’s practice:

— There are several absences, but these workouts are technically voluntary. Frank Gore, Kenyan Drake, Cameron Wake and Andre Branch were in attendance. Those all appear to be rest-related.

— It was a light day overall, with a modest amount of 11-on-11 work. Most players did individual drills, and the Dolphins worked on kickoffs as well.

— All four quarterbacks worked. Ryan Tannehill practiced every day through OTAs and minicamp.

— David Fales threw a 45-yarder down the middle for a touchdown pass to Jakeem Grant, beating two defensive backs in coverage.

— Tannehill found Danny Amendola in the middle of the field for a 30-hard touchdown.

— He struck again at the end of practice with a 40-yarder to DeVante Parker.

— Left guard Josh Sitton was back at practice after missing a day for undisclosed reasons.

[RELATED: Don’t miss our exclusive photos from Dolphins OTAs in Davie]

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

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[Marjory Stoneman Douglas football team visits Dolphins practice]

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

Latest on the progress of Miami Dolphins’ backup quarterbacks

David Fales is the favorite to win the backup quarterback job. (Allen Eyestone/The Post)

DAVIE — The Dolphins still have ample time to sort out their quarterback situation, but it continues to look like David Fales is the man to beat for job of being Ryan Tannehill’s backup.

Fales, who was with the team last offseason and the back half of the regular season, is getting significant snaps with the second-string offense, with Brock Osweiler and Bryce Petty behind him.

“We’re just going to keep, really, just pushing those guys and keep opening up the offense to do as many things as possible,” coach Adam Gase said this week. “They’re trying to get used to the guys that they’re practicing with. I know even for David it’s a different group than he was last year.”

[RELATED: Don’t miss our exclusive photos from Dolphins OTAs in Davie]

Fales took third-string reps last offseason behind Tannehill and Matt Moore, but Gase said he’s spent more time second unit this year. He’s had a lot of plays with Albert Wilson and Jakeem Grant, both of whom are borderline starters.

“Those guys are really good receivers and they challenge those DBs.,” Gase said. “It’s been good for both David and Brock and Bryce to get to work with a lot of the guys they’re working with right now.”

Fales, Osweiler and Petty have not been available to the media this offseason.

Tannehill is the clear starter and takes the majority of his reps with DeVante Parker, Kenny Stills and Danny Amendola.

Gase is out to back up his claim that he has a dependable No. 2 quarterback on the roster and won’t need to call a veteran free agent if Tannehill gets hurt again. Fales and Petty have limited playing experience, and Osweiler hasn’t been viable since 2015.

The advantage for Fales and Osweiler is their experience with Gase prior to this year. That’s especially true for Fales after playing in the offense last season and impressing Gase with extended playing time in the season finale. Dating back to January, Gase has repeatedly indicated Fales is a strong candidate to be Tannehill’s backup.

“Last year we felt really good about how David was coming along,” Gase said three months ago. “Letting him move on (to another team) was not going to be an option for us.”

Gase also said at that time he would “probably” keep three quarterbacks on the active roster in 2018, compared to two each of the past two seasons, though that was factoring in the possibility that the Dolphins would draft one. It’s unclear whether he still intends to go that route, and he doesn’t have to decide until the cut from 90 to 53 players at the end of the preseason.

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

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[Marjory Stoneman Douglas football team visits Dolphins practice]

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

Miami Dolphins are Ryan Tannehill’s team again

Tannehill has grown into the clear leader of the offense. (Allen Eyestone/The Post)

DAVIE — There isn’t a ton the Dolphins can accomplish right now because of the nature of offseason workouts, most of which are technically voluntary, but reestablishing Ryan Tannehill as their quarterback and leader has been a meaningful accomplishment.

Tannehill stayed in the shadows over the past year, recovering from a knee injury that’s kept him out since December 2016, and his absence hit the team hard. Now that he’s healthy again, he’s reasserted himself as the dominant voice in the offense’s huddle.

“You see that he jumped right back in there and guys were rallying around him and ready to go,” coach Adam Gase said. “He’s got good rapport with those skill guys. Those guys are around each other a lot in the offseason when we’re not. Those guys seem to be pretty close and they’re working well together and I know those guys are pushing each other.”

Tannehill spent extra time throwing with receivers away from the team facility leading up to Organized Team Activities, which was important on two fronts. Not only did it get him back in a position of leadership, but most of Miami’s skill players have little-to-no experience playing with him.

The last time Tannehill took a snap, Jarvis Landry was the team’s top receiver. He’s in Cleveland. Jay Ajayi was in his backfield. Now he’s a Super Bowl champion with the Eagles, and little-used rookie Kenyan Drake is all grown up and ready to take over that spot.

Danny Amendola and Albert Wilson are new additions, as are tight ends Mike Gesicki, A.J. Derby and Durham Smythe. Veteran running back Frank Gore is in the huddle.

None of those players have ever appeared in a game with Tannehill, but the chemistry is coming quickly. That’s particularly important as the Dolphins look to wear defenses down with a no-huddle offense.

“Every day, he’s going to get a little bit better because it’s seeing more looks,” Gase said. “The defense does a good job of mixing things up. (Defensive coordinator Matt Burke) is doing a good job of really getting those guys a lot of different looks, so I think whether we’re going up-tempo or we’re huddling, he’s gaining a lot of knowledge and getting a lot of experience, even more than what he already had.”

[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.

Miami Dolphins rookie RB Kalen Ballage leveling out after tough start to OTAs

Dolphins fourth-round pick Kalen Ballage has high potential to be an explosive playmaker. (Allen Eyestone/The Post)

DAVIE — Even in the lower stakes of offseason practices, it’s a bad feeling to line up for a play and not be entirely certain where you’re supposed to go. It’s especially unnerving when you’re in the process of trying to prove you belong in the NFL.

Dolphins rookie Kalen Ballage battled that early in Organized Team Activities when Adam Gase hit the accelerator and had the offense running quicker than he’d seen before. He struggled to keep everything straight as Miami called play after play, and it illuminated how much work he still needs to do.

“I’m from a no-huddle offense at Arizona State, so I’ve been in the no-huddle stuff, but going really fast and not knowing all the plays is completely different,” he said after practice today. “There was a few times where my mind was running 100 miles an hour trying to figure things out.

“It’s not that I don’t know, but am I 100 percent sure? You kind of have an idea of what you’re supposed to be doing, but maybe you aren’t fully sure about it. Just being consistent and knowing what I’ve got so I can be very decisive and play fast.”

The Dolphins, who took Ballage in the fourth round two months ago, hope he’ll be a quick learner. He’s got the combination of a bruising 6-foot-3, 230-pound frame, great speed and the versatility to hurt a defense as a runner or receiver and aspires to reach the level of dual-threat stars like Le’Veon Bell and David Johnson.

If he’s ready to contribute right away he’ll be a significant weapon for Gase as he tries to revamp the offense. He’s settled in since those first few days, working on memorizing plays with fellow rookie running back Buddy Howell of Florida Atlantic, and has looked more comfortable in the offense this week.

“He’s progressing quickly,” Gase said. “He’s consistently been one of those guys that’s trying to find a way to get extra (work) and spend time with other players, just trying to really nail down the offense.

“We’re trying to do as many things as possible in the spring to get him used to things, because once you hit training camp you don’t have a ton of time to spend on one specific thing. A lot of things are going to be flying at him once we hit training camp.”

Ballage believes he was underutilized at Arizona State, where he still managed to run for 669 yards and six touchdowns last season. Over three years as a regular part of the Sun Devils’ offense, he totaled 1,858 yards rushing, 620 yards receiving and 25 total touchdowns.

The upside is he did all of that without taking much of a beating physically because he had only 450 carries in his college career.

As he tries to master the playbook before next month’s training camp, Ballage has been learning from future Hall of Famer Frank Gore and third-year running back Kenyan Drake. Both have gone out of their way to help him acclimate. Gore and Ballage hang out and scour film of other running backs around the league to pick up new moves.

All the on-field reps and off-field study sessions are helping make things run more smoothly for Ballage, who prides himself on being reliable.

“I’m not a guy that makes a lot of mental errors,” he said. “There’s gonna be stuff here and there because I’m learning a new playbook and it’s a lot of information to learn, but I’m just trying to be the most consistent football player I can be right now.”

[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.

What Miami Dolphins head coach Adam Gase said Tuesday (OTAs)

Adam Gase and DeVante Parker working on the Paso Doble at practice. (Allen Eyestone/The Post)

DAVIE — The Dolphins are in their final few days of offseason practice before taking a month off leading up to training camp. By now, their retooled offense should be looking much better, and coach Adam Gase was mildly pleased with this morning’s practice.

With two practices remaining in Organized Team Activities, here are some updates from Gase:

— Left guard Josh Sitton did not practice today. Gase declined to say whether it was injury-related. “I don’t have to tell you,” he said.

— Wide receiver Isaiah Ford, a seventh-round pick last year, has looked good in offseason practices so far. “He’s been very productive this spring,” Gase said. The question is how he’ll do once he faces live competition in preseason games, which he was unable to do last year because of injury.

— Rookie running back Kalen Ballage has been picking up the offense quickly, handling everything from run plays to lining up as a receiver to blocking.

— Gase sees that Ryan Tannehill is clearly the leader of the team, reclaiming his spot. “He jumped right back in there, and guys rallied around him,” he said.

— The no-huddle work went well today. “It’s tough when it’s (hot) out there and you go so many plays in a row,” Gase said. “We’re seeing if guys can execute when they get tired.”

[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.