DAVIE (CBSMiami) – The day that football fans have been waiting all Spring and Summer for has finally arrived.
The Miami Dolphins took the field for the first time on Thursday, kicking off the team’s 2017 training camp.
In past years Miami’s defense always seems to have the early advantage in training camp but that was on the case on this day.
The fans in attendance at the Dolphins training facility in Davie had several opportunities to stand and cheer for big plays by some of the offensive guys.
Taking into consideration that it’s only the first practice of training camp, there certainly appears to be a lot more talent and confidence on the field than at this time a year ago.
The play of the day was a leaping touchdown catch by DeVante Parker in which he reached over Xavien Howard to puck the ball away from the second year corner.
It was just the second play from scrimmage.
Parker is poised for a big-time breakout season. The former first round pick is entering his third season in the NFL but for the first time on day one of camp, he’s completely healthy.
It’s also worth noting that Parker has changed a lot of his off-the-field habits since last season, making sure he is eating right and getting the proper amount of sleep.
The changes in his everyday life have him looking better than ever on the field and his coaches have been raving about him all year.
Kenyan Drake, another young guy looking to take a big step forward this season, made a diving touchdown catch not long after stumbling and being examined by trainers. Clearly, he was fine.
Drake had several nice runs on day one and is hoping to seize the backup tailback job and have a more prolific role in Miami’s offense.
Day one certainly appeared to belong to the Dolphins offense, a sentiment that some players agreed with.
“Absolutely. I think we got the best of the defense today,” said wide receiver Jarvis Landry. “I think we won Round 1.”
Landry knows that Miami’s offense has a chance to do something special this season.
The unit is stacked with talent, from the top three wide receivers (Landry, DeVante Parker and Kenny Stills) to the tight ends (Julius Thomas and Anthony Fasano) to the running backs (Jay Ajayi, Damien Williams and Drake).
Quarterback Ryan Tannehill is entering his sixth year in the NFL and is coming off of his best season as a pro.
The targets he will have in the passing game could propel Tannehill to his first Pro Bowl selection.
Miami could very well have the best three-man receiver group in the league and their impressive work ethic and collective drive to improve every day is what sets them apart.
“Everything we do, we want to be the best,” Landry said of the receivers. “It’s not Top 5; it’s No. 1. For us, again, it starts with today. We’re not looking ahead. We’re just trying to find a way to better what we did last year and get better every time we touch the field.”
- Mike Pouncey and Reshad Jones worked out on the side during practice.
- Hall of Fame quarterback Dan Marino was on the field, helping out the players and coaches.
- Torry McTyer, an undrafted rookie out of UNLV, had two interceptions. One of them would have been a pick six.
- Ted Larsen took the first team reps at left guard. He’s competing with Kraig Urbik and Isaac Asiata for the job.
- Mike Hull worked with the first team linebackers. Rookie Raekwon McMillan is expected to compete for the third starting job.
- Anthony Fasano is dealing with a personal matter and will not report to training camp until it is resolved. “He’s got a personal [matter] that he’s attending to right now and I’ve been aware of that for a few days,” Gase said. “There is no timetable. He’s got to handle what he needs to handle right now. Football will be here.”