DAVIE, Fla. -- Miami Dolphins rookie head coach Adam Gase completed his first organized team activities on Thursday. Overall, Gase was pleased with the team’s effort and speed.
Miami was one of the first NFL teams to hit the practice field this week, because first-year head coaches have extra time to implement their new scheme and playbook. The Dolphins, coming off a disappointing 6-10 season, can certainly use the extra work.
So what was Gase’s biggest takeaway from the past few days?
“I think the No. 1 thing I learned about them is I feel like there’s a lot of guys who want to win,” Gase Thursday. “Just watching them practice, they’re not talking about it. They’re going through what they need to go through in individual and team periods and how fast they play. ... Actions speak louder than words, and right now I like where our guys are at.”
Gase is on the ground floor of building his team in April. He must learn and get used to the players. The players must figure out how things work with the Dolphins under Gase. Chemistry within the locker room also is important.
This is one of the busiest days for Gase this offseason. In addition to Thursday’s morning practice, Gase also will be involved with the NFL draft, which starts at 8 p.m. ET.
Here are some other notes from Thursday’s OTAs:
One of the biggest questions surrounding the Dolphins this year is the offensive line. But Gase admits it is difficult to evaluate the position without contact. He's looking at footwork and hand placement from the offensive line this spring. But it probably won't be until training camp in the summer when he gets a definitive feel for Miami's much-maligned unit. "It's a tough position for them, because with no pads our D-line is coming off the ball," Gase said. "It's a great experience for them, because it's almost unrealistic."
Two players who looked good on offense Thursday were wide receiver Kenny Stills and tight end Jordan Cameron. Both players were underutilized in Miami last year by the former coaching staff. However, both should have larger roles under Gase this year. Stills and Cameron made several plays in team and 7-on-7 drills.
Among those not present in voluntary workouts included defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh, safety Reshad Jones, defensive end Mario Williams and linebacker Jelani Jenkins. Williams is dealing with a personal issue this week, and Jenkins is getting his degree from the University of Florida.