Samson Satele was viewed as an emergency signing and one that the Dolphins hoped would work out for just a few weeks while Mike Pouncey was rehabbing his hip injury. On the flip side, Satele looked at it as an opportunity to revive his career. He did just that and secured himself a spot in the starting lineup as center, for at least the remainder of the 2014 season.
Joe Philbin likes the way that Satele has been playing and is pleased with his steady improvement throughout the course of the season, crediting his work and his willingness to accept advice and constructive criticism from those around him.
"“I thought he played one of his better games the other day, I really did. I thought he did a good job. We actually showed the team some pictures today. We kind of reviewed some fundamentals this week in our team meetings, just some of the basics of blocking and tackling. He showed up on a lot of the pictures from last week’s game. He did a nice job. I like the way he plays. He has good poise and composure. He’s been practicing hard, playing hard. He’s a veteran guy and he’s a hard worker. I like what he is doing.”
Another player who has brought some stability to the offensive line is Dallas Thomas. This is a surprise to many because of how much he has struggled the past several years. Offensive line coach John Benton deserves a ton of credit for this as well as offensive coordinator Bill Lazor as they both put him in positions to succeed.
“You have to really respect the way he is contributing in a variety of different roles," Philbin said. "We’ve asked this guy to do a lot of different things, and he’s never wavered. He’s always been ready. He’s always answered the bell. I think he’s shown improvement. He’s started games at guard. He’s started games at tackle. He’s played right and left. The guy stepped up and has really done some nice things contributing to the football team. I think it’s just maturing overall. I think he was obviously an athletic guy when we drafted him. I think some of his experience and repetitions has paid off for him.”
The offensive line will continue to be one of the most important pieces of this Dolphins team as they head into the final five weeks of the season and attempt to make a playoff run.
This story was written by Matthew Cannata. You can follow him on Twitter: @PhinManiacs