Last night Miami Dolphins WR Brian Hartline spoke VIA conference call with season ticket holders. He was joined by Dolphins CEO Mike Dee. While the call could not be recorded, I was able to jot down some of the questions that were asked as well as the response from Brian Hartline. Below is some of the questions. The answers are not verbatim but are as close to what Brian said as I could possibly recall. Enjoy.
Regarding his rehabilititation:
Hartline: Said that he was progressing well, ‘pretty good’ was the term he used said that 100% is a “lost thing at this point” and said he doesn’t expect to miss any games. Hartline had off-season appendix surgery.
Hartline was asked about the responsibility in this offensive system of the QB and WR’s.
Hartline: Said there is a lot going on with this system. Says the WR’s need to make it easier for the QB and that timing is important. Says both the QB and the WR need to work together to get it done.
Regarding Ryan Tannehill.
Hartline: Caller asked about Andrew Luck and RGIII starting and Tannehill not. Hartline said those teams were not as fortunate as the Dolphins having two veterans on the roster who can start. David Garrard and Matt Moore. Also said later that it’s a good situation for him because he has two veteran to learn from and doesn’t have a “need” to start.
Question about the days leading up to training camp and if they are relaxing.
Hartline: Says he can’t relax in the days leading up to camp. Too excited to get out there and practice.
On prepping with the new staff and possibly being the number 1 guy.
Hartline: He wants to carry the load and is excited about the communication from the coaches. Mentioned Mike Sherman specifically. He calls it all a “good situation”.
Difference between this year and last.
Hartline: Says there really is no difference in the prep work but is more excited about this system than the previous one. He said that year to year regardless of the coaches the prep is normally the same and that even throughout the season coaches will change up parts of the system as needed.
Motivation from negative press.
Hartline: Says he tends to take it more personal but feels this is the best overall corp of WR’s the team has had since he has been here. Later he would signal out Julius Pruitt and Roberto Wallace as two players who could “break out”. Not in a “Victor Cruz” way but add production. Hartline said that he doesn’t let the negative stuff get to him and that production will change that perception. When asked again later, Hartline said that one or two plays will win or lose a game and that good teams find a way to win those plays. said that in some ways, the negativity can be motivating but they are more focused on trying to make those plays that matter.
About HBO’s Hard Knocks.
Hartline: More interested to see what it’s really like. Said they started filming parts during the ending of OTA’s and that on check-in they will be there and then it will be full on come the opening of camp. Said he doesn’t think it will be a distraction and that about a week later and they won’t realize that they are there at all.
What Dolphins offensive player would he take in a fantasy football draft not named Brian Hartline?
Hartline: Laughed and said Jake Long. Kidding. Said that Charles Clay and Anthony Fasano could see a lot of passes their way because this is a passing offense. Also pointed out that Reggie Bush will get a lot of balls thrown to him out of the back-field.
Hartline: Said his goals are to help the team win. Says that winning really is all that matters and that if you are not winning then the rest doesn’t matter. Did say that personally he would like to be a 1,000 yard receiver but again reiterated that he wants to win. Says it’s all team first.
About Chad Johnson.
Hartline: Chad joined the roster late in the OTA’s and after the OTA’s most of the workouts are done on their own so Chad hasn’t been around much. Said that he will be a valuable asset to the young players and his knowledge of the game will really help the offense.
About his role in the offense.
Hartline: Says he will do whatever the coaches ask him to do. Says that is the mentality of the team, to do whatever the team needs. Said as a kid he loved to get dirty and dive for catches. Says maybe that’s why he is able to drag his feet so well, because he practiced it as a kid.
About one game on the schedule that he gets excited about.
Hartline: The caller dismissed the “one game at a time cliche’.” Hartline said that he doesn’t get particularly excited about playing certain teams that in the NFL today, teams are so closely matched that every team has a chance to win. He did however say that he loves to play the Patriots because you have to be playing very well to beat them. Said he loves going to NE and beating them there.
Mike Dee was asked about management prep.
Mike Dee: Said the teams management are going through their checklists to get everything ready for training camp so that the team can go out and practice and get better. Wants everything ready for them by camp start. Said that on August 12th, Sunday, the team will hold a practice that will be open only to season ticket holders. There will be food and autograph sessions with both cheerleaders and players. Said that 14 practices will be open to the public this year and that those practices are free.
That wrapped the call.
Please note that most of these answers have been paraphrased and are not the word for word verbatim comments of Brian Hartline or Mike Dee. Any misunderstandings of those comments in context are mine and mine alone.