In the second installment of HBO’s Hard Knocks featuring the Miami Dolphins, HBO got its money worth in terms of drumming up interest in the show when WR Chad Johnson was arrested last weekend for an alleged assault against his wife. HBO had footage of Chad being delivered to the police station, as well as being taken to the Dolphins practice facility upon his release.
It was a tense final ten minutes of the show and one could expect the ratings to be pretty good when the numbers come out. For now, here’s a recap of how training camp is going through the eyes of HBO’s cameras.
MDD Staff Writer: Chad Pullen and Eric Galko
EPISODE TWO HERE: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dqK18eXhf4M&feature=youtu.be
David Garrard’s knee injury, Chad Johnson cut
According to the behind the scenes footage, coach Joe Philbin was informed in his office that Garrard had injured himself, while in the swimming pool with his son. Pretty tough break given Garrard was in good shape to start opening day, and even tougher considering the injury isn’t even football related. The only bright side to it could be if it gives rookie QB and future of the franchise Ryan Tannehill a chance to get more reps sooner rather than later.
So far in this camp, 34 year old Chad Johnson, recently cut from the team, and 34 year old Garrard, both of whom will not be in Miami’s long term plans, have opened doors for younger players to step up and give a glimpse into what Miami’s future may look like. It may cost in 2012, but it’s possible that these events will help the Dolphins down the line.
As suspected, TE’s are not yet performing as anticipated
After the draft, the future looked extremely bright for the Dolphins at the tight end position. Sixth round pick in 2011 Charles Clay emerged late in the season as a viable player and made a few plays during his rookie season. In the third round in 2012, the Dolphins selected Michael Egnew and later in the summer found a potential diamond in the rough in former college basketball player Les Brown. The position looked set, and could be very useful for Tannehill for the next decade if everything went right, however, so far in this camp, things are not going well.
Offensive Coordinator Mike Sherman was very strong with his words telling both Clay, and Egnew they were playing horrible and the team needed more from them, at one point telling Egnew that if he were the GM, he would cut the rookie. And while Brown is working hard and an athletic marvel, his blocking leaves so much to be desired, he may not be able to help out much this season until he learns that huge part of the position. It’s possible Sherman was just trying to motivate both Clay and Egnew, and they may eventually start to become comfortable within the offense as well as with Tannehill the more reps they have together.
Brandon Marshall to Chris Hogan?
In maybe the biggest surprise of the episode, and it looks like all of camp, undrafted free agent from Monmouth, Chris Hogan has caught the eye of several of his more prominent teammates by simply doing something that sounds easy, but is clearly not in the NFL, getting open. RB Reggie Bush has taken to Hogan so much, the cameras several times catch Reggie calling Hogan 7-11, as in, open 24 hours a day, every day.
The quarterbacks have taken notice too as they are caught mentioning to each other that the kids is “always open”. On a team desperate for receiver help, and needing someone or someone’s to step up, Hogan may just make his mark. It should not be a surprise in Miami, Davone Bess made his way into the league in a similar manner, finding a home in the slot as an undrafted free agent a few years ago.
Still a long ways to go to determine if Hogan will make the team, or even have an impact, but so far he appears to be a guy that the Dolphins will have to look at long and hard and see if they have unearthed yet another receiving gem in an unlikely fashion.
-Tough to see Joe Philbin show emotion the way he did when asked about the loss of his son. Rare emotion from a guy who has been straight-faced and focused thus far.
-Ryan Tannehill continues to impress on and off the cameras. He’s now show ability (on camera) to be more of a leader and director of traffic in the offense.
-Pat Devlin, the 4th quarterback, is apparently not part of the team at all. Repeatedly skipped over on camera. His last name came almost accidently by the announcers from the pre-season game.
-Josh Samuda’s haircut is hiliarious. I won’t spoil it for those that haven’t seen it, but it is among the best I’ve ever seen. The Dolphins team barber is fantastic. And good thing he’s been impressing and right now likely to make the team. That would be an unfortunate haircut if he didn’t.
-I’m hoping we get some more defensive talk in the coming weeks. I’m excited to learn more about the receivers and check in on Tannehill vs. Moore, but we haven’t seen much from the defensive line, the running backs, or the linebackers much at all.