Written by Matthew Cannata
The Miami Dolphins opened up training camp today and while they started off with Branden Albert, Daryn Colledge, Shelley Smith, Dallas Thomas and Ja’Waun James as the starters on the line from left to right, head coach Joe Philbin says that we shouldn’t read too much into. His goal is to get the five best players on the line, regardless of who it is and where they play.
“We’re always attempting to get the five best players that we possibly can out in the field at one time,” Head Coach Joe Philbin said. “I would tell you that we’re going to be looking at a number of different combinations. This is practice number one. This is the way we wanted to look at it today. We’ll take a look at the film and go from there. But we will be moving some guys around and taking a look at guys and see how they respond.”
Although Smith has never played center in the NFL, his intelligence and instincts are the primary factors in moving him to the middle. That, along with his ability to pull from either direction, is what makes him so enticing there while Mike Pouncey is recovering from his injury.
In regards to Colledge, he is fighting for a starting position and will battle Billy Turner throughout camp. However, he’s not going to down easy and will do whatever it takes to be the starter come opening day.
“Any guy expects to come in and be a starter,” Colledge said. “Anytime that you don’t come in and try to be a starter, I think you’re cheating yourself. I’ve got a lot of games as a starting left guard, so I want to come in here and compete as the starting left guard. If Coach decides that somebody is better and I’m the sixth man and that’s the best opportunity for me to be on this roster and that helps them the most, then so be it. But I promise I’m going to fight for that spot until they tell me I don’t got it anymore.”
The offensive line will be one of the most interesting things to watch as camp unfolds. With John Benton as the new offensive line coach, Dolphins fans shouldn’t be worried when the final product is finalized and hits the field due to his long history of success in the NFL.