By Lisa Johnson //@LJ1303
Miami Dolphins and Tampa Bay Buccaneers started their second day of joint practices under dark and ominous skies. After several runs back and forth, indoor then out, fans and media were eventually sent indoor permanently due to lightning in the area. As both squads moved into their routine drills, several things stood out.
The Dolphins quarterback battle continued. Josh Rosen took the majority of the snaps with the first team, while Ryan Fitzpatrick worked the day with the second team. Both seemed to have their struggles as the Dolphins continue to try to fill in some serious holes on that offensive line.
Coach Flores was asked what he thought of Josh Rosen’s play today. “I thought Josh was – I thought he played well. There were some missed throws there. I think he held it a little, and that’s something we’ve talked about constantly – good footwork, good fundamentals, good technique, keep your eyes downfield, get the ball out of your hands, get it to the playmakers, which I thought he did. I thought the backs had a good day today.”
Early on it was announced that wide receiver DeVante Parker and running back Kenyan Drake would not be practicing. Drake was seen in a walking boot. Although nothing official was said by the Dolphins, no injury update was giving on Parker, who was on the sidelines and watching.
Coach Flores was asked if he was concerned if Drake would be ready for the opener? “We take things day-to-day here. The opener’s down the road. He’s got a little injury, and I think we – he’s just going to take it day-to-day. He’s got a great attitude about it. I think he’ll be okay.”
Without Drake, RB Kalen Ballage took the majority of the snaps. When asked if he felt like this was an opportunity for him, he replied, “I’m just out here to have fun and play football and do my job. I don’t really worry too much else or anything. I’m happy for the opportunity.”
Preston Williams ?
— PFF (@PFF) August 13, 2019
One other player that seemed to take advantage of his opportunity was WR Preston Williams. Williams was asked about his opportunity to take some reps and show his skill. “I learn from DeVante…I’ve watched him a long time. Even growing up, I remember when DeVante first got drafted and I was in high school about to graduate. I’ve always been a big fan of DeVante’s. I’m excited to be in the room with him, and learn from him. He’s teaching me new releases and how to run routes. He’s just being a good vet.”
Wiiliams was also asked about his first appearance as a punt returner. “Yeah. That was my punt return opportunity. Trenton (Irwin) has been back there, Kenny (Stills), Jakeem (Grant) and RB Kenyan (Drake). I’m learning from those guys. That was my first time. It was pretty cool.”
Defensively, the Dolphins defensive backs seemed to have some struggles with Bucs WR Mike Evans, who smoked cornerback Xavien Howard early on. Evans hasn’t lost a step from last year and his size can really cause some problems. The defense seemed to bounce back when safety Minkah Fitzpatrick read Buccaneers QB Jameis Winston eyes and jumped the route for an easy INT. Dolphins LB Nick DeLuca had himself quite a day, also bringing down an INT for the defense.
No practice scheduled for tomorrow so the Dolphins can prepare for their second preseason game in Tampa on Friday night.
Talk Dolphins with Lisa on Twitter @LJ1303