Terrence Fede, a rookie seventh-round pick out of Marist, made a huge impact in Sunday’s game against the Minnesota Vikings. With under a minute to go and the Vikings backed up in their own end zone ready to punt it away, Fede burst through the line and got his hand on the ball. The end result? The ball flying out of the end zone, a safety and a sealed victory for the Miami Dolphins.
In the locker room following the game, it was all smiles for Fede and his teammates and he walked us through what was happening and how he felt.
“It was a bad snap, and I saw the ball on the ground, so I was like, forget the hold up, I’m going to go try and block the kick. And that’s what happened, I was able to go and block the kick. It felt amazing. It’s something that I haven’t felt in a while. You know I haven’t been making enough plays that I wanted to make, but that’s just the beginning of everything.”
While many players would see the ball on the ground and try to go after it, Fede said that his instinct told him to get in there as fast as he can to get a hand on the kick. After it was blocked, he admitted he had no idea what was going on.
“I was looking for it in the sky, I didn’t know where it went. Eventually I saw it land in front of me, in the stands, and I knew that was two points, and I knew that was the game right there and I was excited. I got a lot of congratulations on the sideline, and everybody was happy for me. Coach has been preaching all week that it’s a sixty minute game and how do you think it happens? You just have to keep working hard, and if you keep working hard, you’ll be able to close out the game.”
For Joe Philbin, he didn’t get to experience the thrill and excitement of the blocked punt because he was off talking to offensive coordinator Bill Lazor about what type of plays they were going to run once getting the ball back. They had planned to run a hurry-up offense to get into field goal range to attempt the game winning kick.
Fede’s teammates were also jumping in on the excitement – not just because of the blocked punt and victory – but because they were genuinely happy for him.
“Reality is that we have a lot of confidence in him,” Cameron Wake said. “He can make plays when he gets in there as you guys see, and he’s like one of us and we expect big things from him.”
Jared Odrick said that it’s a great thing for a young guy like Fede to make that kind of impact.
“It feels good especially for a guy like [Terrence] Fede, a young guy who’s just trying to make plays. He does a lot for this team that people don’t see. Every day of practice, he’s playing every single special teams, every single defensive snap on scout team, then he’s taking defensive reps. He’s suiting up as an offensive blocker. He does a lot for this team. It was really nice and special to see him win the game for us.”
After everyone had finished talking and answering questions, Fede was still soaking in the moment and summed it up best with one final quote.
“It feels amazing. One of my first big NFL plays finished the game off. It’s pretty cool.”
This story was written by Matthew Cannata. Follow him on Twitter: @PhinManiacs