Thursday morning was supposed to be the Dolphins’ final open practice of the 2013 season. Nasty weather in South Florida kept the Dolphins inside the bubble, however, so Wednesday morning’s practice actually holds that distinction.
Today’s workout was the final session of training camp, though.
The team broke camp this morning, but plenty of work in preparation for the regular season still needs to be done. Three preseason games remain on the slate and several competitions have yet to be decided.
But we’ll get to all of that in time. Let’s recap what transpired in Davie this morning:
Will Davis works as starting nickel
After demonstrating some ball-hawking ability during training camp and last Friday night in Jacksonville, rookie cornerback Will Davis got the call up to cover the slot with the first team. And wouldn’t you know it, he picked off another pass this morning — this time on a deflected Matt Moore throw.
At this point, it can’t be a coincidence that Davis always finds his way around the ball and continues to be a takeaway machine. He still gets beat in coverage on occasion, but for a defense that desperately wants to create more turnovers in 2013, playing the rookie will be awfully tempting.
Jonas Gray gets goal-line carries
Running back Jonas Gray’s impressive first two preseason games earned him goal-line work with the first-team offense this week at practice. The Dolphins remain high on Daniel Thomas, so Gray doesn’t have much of a chance to unseat him as the team’s No. 2 behind Lamar Miller.
But Gray could earn himself a nice short-yardage role if he continues to convert first downs and get himself in the end zone during the exhibition season. Miami would have to be willing to keep four running backs, though.
Dolphins sign defensive end
The Dolphins had room to add a player after letting go of kicker Dan Carpenter on Wednesday. The team announced the signing of defensive end Antwan Applewhite before practice on Thursday morning.
Applewhite is entering his sixth NFL season and accumulated 6.5 sacks during his first five with the San Diego Chargers and Carolina Panthers. He has some starting experience, but the Dolphins have a crowded defensive line.
Applewhite is a long shot to make the 53-man roster, but did register a sack on Aaron Corp during his first practice with the team.
Tannehill has good week of practice
Starting quarterback Ryan Tannehill may have saved his best week of training camp for last. After perhaps his sharpest practice of this year’s camp on Wednesday, Tannehill was on the money again this morning, connecting with the likes of Brian Hartline, Brandon Gibson and Mike Wallace.
Saturday night in Houston will be a great test for Tannehill. Will the momentum from a great week of practice carry over to the game?
We need to see quicker decision making, more confidence in the pocket and more consistent accuracy from the second-year passer. He’s more than capable of all three requirements and we’ve seen him meet them before.
Helmet day for Dolphins rookies
Training camp may have wrapped up this morning, but rookie hazing hasn’t. Each member of the Dolphins’ rookie draft class and all of their undrafted free-agent signings are required to wear their helmets all day long. And that includes while taking showers, naps and hanging out in their rooms.
The Dolphins will travel to Houston where they will take on the Texans at 8 p.m. on Saturday night.