A trio of Dolphins talking points to jumpstart your Monday:
1. Transition to 4-3 defense shouldn’t be too difficult.
Throughout the offseason, we’ve told you that the Dolphins are switching to a 4-3 defense under new coordinator Kevin Coyle
after playing the 3-4 scheme since the 2005 season.
Several players will be playing different positions or have different gap responsibility this year to better take advantage of their pass-rushing speed: Outside linebackers like Cameron Wake
and Jamaal Westerman
move to defensive end, defensive end Randy Starks
and nose tackle Paul Soliai
move to defensive tackle, inside linebacker Kevin Burnett
becomes the “Sam” linebacker, Karlos Dansby
becomes the “Mike” and strong outside linebacker Koa Misi
becomes the “Will” linebacker.
But Coyle doesn’t expect the transition to be too difficult. In a To view links or images in this forum your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
– Coyle coached the Bengals’ secondary for the last 11 seasons – Coyle said that the Dolphins ran a true 3-4 defense just 12 percent of the time last year.
The rest of the time the Dolphins were in sub packages – Nickel, Dime, goal line, etc. – many of which looked like the 4-3 defense, especially when Wake lined up with his hand in the dirt.
Plus, most of the players have played in a 4-3 defense before, most likely in college and high school. And considering that the NFL is now a passing league, the Dolphins figure to spend a lot of time in their sub packages again this year, especially the Nickel package, as more and more teams run base offensive plays with three wide receivers.
That’s why the Dolphins signed Richard Marshall
this offseason to be their Nickel corner – Marshall is known as one of the better run-stopping cornerbacks in the league, and has finished in the top 10 in solo tackles among cornerbacks for each of the past six seasons.
Since NFL rules allowed the Dolphins two extra weeks of classroom time in April because they have a first-year head coach in Joe Philbin
, Coyle had plenty of time to teach the defense. According to the Enquirer, Coyle taught the defensive playbook three times.
“As far as installing things, this was the most extensive that I have been able to do it because of all the classroom time that we had,” Coyle said. “The first couple months weren’t easy because we were putting together a new playbook and change is not easy. Once the players started coming in and working out, though, it started to feel comfortable.”