In a recent interview with Greg Likens of the Finsiders, Miami Dolphins Pro Bowl cornerback Brent Grimes described a very productive offseason.
"It's been great. We've been in here working, doing some great things,” he said. “Team bonding, OTA's, getting your timing down and your footwork down, just getting used to playing football again. I feel like we got good OTA's and we're trying to carry that over into mini-camp."
As for all the players that are competing for the starting cornerback spot opposite of him, Grimes had nothing but praise.
"It's the NFL. And there's competition every year, all the time. And all those guys can play. So everyone has their strengths and everything. It's just a competition going into training camp, so the coaching staff will choose who they feel most comfortable with starting. If it (were) up to me, I feel comfortable with whoever they pick, because I believe in all those guys and think all of them can play. Whoever gets on the field will do what they can to help us win games."
Two players in the defensive backfield, Safety Louis Delmas and cornerback Will Davis, are coming off serious injuries. Grimes has come back from a serious injury himself after missing the entire 2012 season when he ruptured his achilles tendon in the first game of the year, and has encouraging words for his teammates.
"I've dealt with a major injury before, and I've talked to them and things like that," Grimes said. "But just to see them out there and not be apprehensive and trying all the things they need to do to try and get back, you know, doing all the football moves, and not being scared to plant off that leg, not being scared to jump off that leg that they hurt, and seeing that stuff going on is a real positive thing. With that attitude I think they'll be just fine."
Never one to be complacent, Grimes has a reputation as one of the hardest workers on the team. No stranger to dedicating himself to offseason workouts as he prepares for his third season with the Dolphins, and hopefully another Pro Bowl bid, he challenges himself daily.
"You just always gotta challenge yourself." Grimes said. "Yes I've had some success in this league, but you can never get comfortable. Because the moment you get comfortable, that's when things start going bad. That's why if you follow us around, you always see me swole in the weight room, I stay swole. And that helps me out on the field."
After what could be considered a down year for the team's top corner, Grimes has been putting focus on a particular aspect of his game each time he goes out to practice.
"When we get on the field, I try to work on something (in) every practice. That's what I do especially when training camp starts - I just focus on one thing every practice. (There) might be a weakness, and I'll work on that for the whole practice." Grimes said. "Practice might not go as great as I want it to because I'm working on something I want to get better at. That's what I do, I challenge myself every day, every phase of the season. I challenge myself with some new lifts, lifting stuff different, OTA's, working on stuff, helping guys out. And in training camp, (it’s) the same thing, gotta focus yourself and keep yourself motivated, and try to get better."
With the Dolphins defense looking like it's on the verge of being a top five defense, especially with the addition of defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh, Grimes and the rest of the players on defense have the potential to be much improved in 2015, and that in itself will help the team win games. But that won't stop Grimes from making sure that he goes above and beyond to ensure that's he at the top of his game when the season starts.
This story was written by Eldon Jenson. Follow him on Twitter @EJFootball
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