The Miami Dolphins may not be winning fans on the field but there are no questions about their efforts to win them over off the field. Once again the Dolphins are giving back to their fans. This time around, inviting season ticket holders and members of the Fins Club to join a conference call with three players from the team. Tonight was the second of such events with two more on the horizon and it’s not too late for you to join the next to calls. Simply join the Fins Club for free or buy season tickets.
The Dolphins have held other such events for members of their season ticket clientele. Owner Stephen Ross has spoken with members of the season ticket holders in an open Q&A and earlier this month HC Joe Philbin participated in a live Q&A with callers as well. Tonight, I got to sit in on the conference call hosted by FinSiders personality Jesse Alger as the Phins gave us WR Brian Hartline and LB’s Austin Spitler and Jason Trusnik.
Here is what the players had to say on a myriad of questions regarding the teams off-season and the prospects of what can be expected in 2013.
Regarding the off-season:
Brian Hartline spoke about the fact that there really is no off-season anymore. He said that most players will take a couple weeks off but most will return to the weight room to begin getting ready for the season. He said many players will be back to work out in another week. This despite the fact that training camp doesn’t start for a few more weeks.
On how they plan to start the season differently:
Austin Spitler pointed out that the coaches are stressing a fast start to the season and Jason Trusnik echoed the same sentiment. Trusnik said that the players are working hard to come together quickly. Brian Hartline spoke about the fact that the team is trying to avoid having end of the season issues where they look back wishing they had the early games back and that the coaches keep talking about not giving those games away.
Regarding new additions:
Brian Hartline spoke often about the quality of talent the team has this year and how excited the team is about the new additions. Calls the new additions “High-Quality” depth and competition all around. Austin Spitler continued to talk about the change in talent level at every position and singled out Brent Grimes as a player who has impressed everyone from the moment he came out. Said he “seems to have a pick every practice”. Jason Trusnik, who has been on three NFL teams in his career, said this is the first time he has seen a team actually look like a team this early. Said the players want to get this down that they are playing like a team believing in themselves like a team and that everyone is working hard in every phase of the practices. Calls it impressive.
Compared to last year
Spitler says it feels like a team in every way. They are complete and there is a lot of cohesiveness. Trusnik added that the players who were here last year are now familiar with the system and that everything is much faster and that they are helping the new additions unlike last year when everyone was new to the scheme.
On Personal Goals
Brian Hartline said he would like to reach 1,000 yards again and add more TD’s but that it’s only important if the team is successful. He said he is not focused on how the additions of Wallace (or Gibson) will affect him that he worries only about his job with the team to make the team better. Hartline said he is working hard to be a leader to the younger guys and to the team on the field overall leading by example. Said the team is working to get better in the “high-red” (closer to the 20) and that the team is working diligently on cutting down on drive killing penalties that moved them out of goal to go situations.
On Ryan Tannehill
Brian Hartline said that Tannehill has got a really nice touch on his ball and an amazing deep ball. Said he showed up ready to go and obviously had been working on a lot of things during the off-season. Said there has been a lot of improvement and that
On why fans should attend training camp sessions:
Hartline reminded the listeners that the sessions are free and that it gives the fans a chance to meet some of the players and see them interact on a more personal level, get some autographs and shake some hands, Trusnik said that the players are determined and explosive and that it’s going to be exciting to see the talent. Spitler echoed the same sentiment.
If you would like to be a part of the next call, sign up for free by registering here.