Written by Luis Sung | Twitter: @FLSportDebater
After a thoroughly unimpressive rookie campaign, tight end Dion Sims has suddenly become the favorite to win the backup job behind Charles Clay, and his production in training camp and the scrimmage at Sun Life Stadium justifies that line of thinking. Most importantly however is something head coach Joe Philbin has mentioned he's seen from Sims that he hasn't before.
“Consistency,” Philbin said. “I would say he has been a little bit more consistent. I think he’s catching the ball very well. We’ve seen him in the passing game look and play faster. So we’re encouraged by that and I think that’s going to be something that can pay dividends for us this year. But I think that and I think his blocking has gotten more consistent as well.”
In working with the first-team offense, Sims has gained valuable experience in offensive coordinator Bill Lazor's offense, and he's really enjoying what he's being asked to do.
“It’s definitely an opportunity to make plays when my number is called,” Sims said after practice Wednesday. “We just have to move forward and not miss a beat.”
But Sims isn't content with just doing well in practice and letting that be the source of his improvements. In order to augment the speed of his progression, Sims has taken to watching film of some of the best TEs in recent memory.
“I watched Clay a lot and some of the stuff that he does is pretty outstanding,” Sims said. “Just watching Clay and Antonio Gates, I watched a little bit of him and Tony Gonzalez as well. That’s something that I will probably start doing, incorporating more into my game.”
Sims is showing a work ethic and a determination to be great that not all players show, and it's that fire that's driven him to become the favorite to win the second tight end spot behind Clay, and he will continue to study and learn and become even greater, not just as a blocker which he was drafted to be in the first place, but also as an offensive weapon, one that quarterback Ryan Tannehill will surely take advantage of.