The narrative about the Miami Dolphins’ turnaround the past two months has been that the offensive line got healthy, Jay Ajayi got crazy good, and the defense got rest as the offense controlled the football.
And that all came together to help the Dolphins start rolling on their current six-game win streak.
But, if you recall, I told you three weeks ago there were hidden signs that led to success that no one else saw or knew about.
Well, today coach Adam Gase pulled the curtain back on some of those previously hidden reasons the Dolphins are succeeding now. As he was talking to the Baltimore Ravens reporters in a leadup to Sunday’s game at Baltimore he said it’s not all about the offensive line and running game.
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It’s deeper than that..
“It starts really with we’ve eliminated all of the type of nonsense that most of the teams around the NFL don’t have during the week -- guys being late, guys getting fined, having practices that really are not energetic and you’re not getting things done the way you need to,” Gase revealed. “We’ve really turned around as far as a maturity standpoint of our younger guys doing things right (and) our veterans doing a good job of showing these guys the right way to do things day in and day out.
“I think that’s been our biggest turnaround as far as just doing all of the things leading up to the game and then on Sunday, that’s at least giving us our best chance to know what to do and to execute our game plan.”
Gase doesn’t think there was one landmark moment that shifted things. It was just about growth. His young team is getting older. More professional.
And the culture he’s tried to instill has taken root and is starting to bloom.
“I think it’s been mostly a gradual (shift) through the progression of the season,” Gase said. “We would have one or two things a week. It wouldn’t be always these huge (things), like this guy isn’t playing because of this. It wasn’t things like that all the time, just little tiny irritant things for a coach where, ‘Why can’t we just be on time?’ Some of those things happen every once in a while and it happens in every organization and it’s frustrating when it does because this is your job. It would be like any of us not being where we’re supposed to be and just kind of shrugging your shoulders, not really caring. That was something we felt like we needed to get changed fast and we needed to make sure we were doing the right things because it does matter on Sunday. It all adds up at the end of the day.”
Ready for the bombshell?
Gase believes this stuff needed to be “changed fast” because it had gone on too long before he arrived. That’s right, Joe Philbin -- obsessive in picking up wads of paper from the practice field and not having certain personalities on the team -- apparently let this other stuff happen more than we know.
“I think that’s how it has been here for the last how many whatever years,” Gase said. “That’s just what it was.”
Armando Salguero on Twttier: @ArmandoSalguero