Brandon Fields had his own Will Ferrell moment Monday.
Just like Ferrell’s “Frank the Tank” character in Old School bragged that a trip to Bed, Bath & Beyond constituted a big day, Fields also faced creeping domestication when asked what he planned to do with his new contract. (He signed a four-year extension worth $13.3 million over the weekend).
“My wife probably will want to do a couple of improvements around the house,” Fields said. “She’s been talking about redoing the kitchen, so we’ll see if she can talk me into it.”
With more than $3 million in guaranteed money, Fields can spring for the Sub-Zero refrigerator. The contract, which makes Fields the league’s fifth-highest paid punter, could keep him a Dolphin through 2016. Fields, whose 48.8 yards per punt last year ranked third in the NFL, has been with the team since it drafted him in 2007.
“Obviously, I’m glad that it happened before the season, that way I don’t have to worry about it, and I can just concentrate on doing my job,” Fields said.
The Dolphins defense was a turnstile during two-point conversion drills Monday, with the offense scoring at will through the air.
After a couple of interceptions (one of which was deflected), quarterback David Garrard got it going with a conversion to running back Steve Slaton under heavy pressure. In Garrard’s next chance, he rolled right and found wide receiver Roberto Wallace. Matt Moore connected on two scoring passes in the same drill, and Ryan Tannehill ended practice with a strike to Marlon Moore.
“There’s two ways to look at it,” coach Joe Philbin said. “You can walk off the field and never be happy, or you can walk off the field and always be happy as a head coach.”
Philbin is just days from his first NFL game as a head coach, albeit one that doesn’t count. The exhibition opener against Tampa Bay on Friday night at Sun Life Stadium will have several subplots, including how much he decides to play his starters. Usually, the first string plays just a series or two in such games, but that is subject to change, depending on the coach.
“If the defense goes out there three times and shuts them down and doesn’t give them a first down, then nine plays might be perfect for them,” Philbin said.
Tannehill might have been the most effective quarterback on the field in Saturday’s scrimmage, but offensive coordinator Mike Sherman made sure to keep him grounded in the meetings that followed.
In particular, Sherman chided the first-round pick for overthrowing Legedu Naanee on what would have been a sure touchdown on Tannehill’s first snap.
“He left some yardage on the field on that first pass,” Sherman said. “If he just puts a little more air underneath it, it’s a touchdown. I don’t know how many yards it would been, 80 yards, 70 yards. We can’t miss those.”