Dolphins News and Notes

Daniel Thomas, Lamar Miller in battle for time at running back

 

dneal@MiamiHerald.com

CAMP BATTLE

Dolphins coach Joe Philbin said he thought Saturday was the best practice for the running game so far. Although Daniel Thomas and Lamar Miller each demonstrated good quickness and burst, Thomas thought one thing cast a dark light on his day — a fumble in team drills that defensive lineman Jared Odrick recovered.

So, call Saturday a nudge forward for Miller, who also ran a nice wheel route under a Ryan Tannehill lob, as the Dolphins decide who will start at running back.

PLAYS OF THE DAY

Fans gave the golf claps to short completions of the kind they’ve been watching from the Dolphins since Dan Marino’s arm expired. Halfway through practice, in one-on-one drills, they got what everybody has anticipated seeing — Tannehill throwing deep, especially to free agent speedster Mike Wallace.

Tannehill hit Wallace behind cornerback Brent Grimes 50 yards down the field and, soon after, found former college teammate Jeff Fuller and Brian Hartline up the left sideline on consecutive throws. In team drills, however, cornerback Nolan Carroll smothered Wallace on a deep route and Grimes made a diving deflection on another long pass play while losing his helmet in mid-sail.

“It’s frustrating at times whenever they make a good play, but when you go back, watch the play and the coach says, ‘Well, you did just about everything right and the defense made a good play,’ ” Tannehill said. “That’s exciting for me in a sense where I know once we play on Sundays and they are on my side, it’s going to be exciting to watch them make plays.”

NOTABLE

• An NFL source spotted offensive guard John Jerry sporting a wrapped knee and using crutches at the team hotel. Jerry missed his second consecutive practice Saturday.

In Jerry’s absence, for several first- and second-team snaps in team drills Saturday, starting center Mike Pouncey set up at right guard. Josh Samuda moved to center and Richie Incognito moved back to left guard. Rookie Dallas Thomas also worked at right guard.

• A NFL source said kicker Caleb Sturgis’ groin injury should sideline him only for several days. As Saturday was Sturgis’ day to kick, no field goals were attempted by him or incumbent Dan Carpenter.

Wide receiver Armon Binns appeared to hurt his left shoulder while diving for a ball and getting tangled up with a cornerback in team drills.

• Although Saturday was Tannehill’s best day of camp — and his 25th birthday — he didn’t get the birthday present of a tremendous amount of help. None of the quarterbacks did as drops plagued the receivers. If the day had a signature pose, it would be an anguished receiver holding his hands in front of him and staring with disbelieving accusation at what they had wrought.

• Sunday morning will be a full-pads practice in preparation for Monday night’s scrimmage at Sun Life Stadium. The Dolphins worked with upper pads Saturday and in shells Friday.

QUOTABLE

“Humbling. He’s a special player.”

— nine-year NFL veteran offensive tackle Tyson Clabo, on what it has been like going against speedy defensive end Cameron Wake in practice daily.

Practice dates and times

Sunday8 a.m.

(at team facility; open only to Fin Club members)

Monday7 p.m.

(at Sun Life Stadium)

TuesdayTeam is off.

Wednesday6 p.m.

(at team facility)

Thursday1:30 p.m.

(at team facility)

Friday11:30 a.m.

(at team facility)

SaturdayTeam is off.

Aug. 4Preseason game against Dallas in Canton, Ohio. (NBC)

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