Porter update and a (failed) attempt at positive news
Amazing, this team.
Anyway, I was hoping to give you some positive news today because, what the heck, it's Friday. You're gearing up for a Fall football weekend and I'm just plain tired of telling you how awful YOUR Miami Dolphins are.
So I figured I would write about the offensive line.
Believe it or not, the unit that was a grave concern during the offseason and training camp is kinda, sorta coming together. Now, they're not the '72 Dolphins O-Line by any means. But they are not the biggest worry on the team, either.
There is hope in there somewhere.
Line coach Hudson Houck has done a good job bringing this group together. Ronnie Brown has pieced together three consecutive 100-yard games so obviously the blockers must be doing something right.
So I asked to speak with Houck so he could tell me -- and by extension you -- what the players are doing better, how he got them to improve, where they need to tweak to get better still, positive stuff like that.
Houck refused to be interviewed.
Resisting the strong urge to bag the whole thing because there are so many negative issues to explore and write about, I asked Cam Cameron about the line. I asked Cameron what they're doing well now that maybe they were still working at attaining in preseason.
"Hudson is so good at just being consistent in how he teaches and his preparation," Cameron said, beginning his answer. Great, so I ask about the players and he tells me about the coach who doesn't want to talk.
"He is just grinding on them the fundamentals over and over, and now you’re talking about switching game planning," Cameron continued. "Now you’re going from a 3-4 defense to a 4-3, and you’re having to make adjustments from week to week. I think those are things where they can grow together. There were some things last week I think they learned. We had a couple of tendencies we knew about Houston, and we didn’t really use them to our advantage the way we could have. That’s one thing Hud and I noticed – we saw a little tip and it was right there for them to see. All you need is to have one guy see it and communicate it, and you can take advantage of it. I think they learned a valuable lesson last week that when you have a tip on somebody, it doesn’t do you any good if you’re not going to use it in the game, and it doesn’t take five guys to all see it. One guy sees it and communicates it, so I think little things like that, they can continue to grow with.”
Do you see what's going on here? I ask what the heck is being done right by the players and get an answer of how well the coaches found a "tip" on Houston front. Then I'm told the players failed to recognize this "tip" following a week of being coached about it. And not just one player failed to see it, but all of them failed to see it.
I'm telling you all this so you understand how sometimes serving that group of fans that want something positive to chew on is pert near impossible.
It can't be done often anyway because, well, the team is winless in five outings. But even when there is good news, the Dolphins sometimes derail it by, refusing to talk about it as Houck did or changing the subject to another problem as Cameron did.
Anyway, let it be said Miami's offensive line is playing better. It is playing above most expectations. Vernon Carey has done the improbable and gone from being a good right tackle to a good left tackle. Anthony Alabi was good in entering the game as a guard when Samson Satele got hurt. They accomplished all this against the No. 6-rated run defense.
There. Somebody had to say it.