Joe Philbin makes his rounds at bedtime, knocks on a door, open it and announces that it’s lights out. He says good night to each of the 90 players on his roster before retiring to meet with his coaches. He says he is trying to be more hands on with his team.
Philbin also met with members of his team and explained that they needed to develop the leadership of the locker room. Those players met with other players and meetings began and soon the team had found their mantra. “We are Miami Dolphins”.
On Wednesday the first image of a t-shirt appeared that players are wearing. It is line by line motivational encouragement for a team that is trying desperately to put last year behind them. The team insists that last years issues are not the reason behind any of this years shirt quotes but it’s hard to say that internally that is not the case.
“I Will Not Quit”. “If I see something, I will say something”. “I live respect and truth telling”. Three of the quotes that appear on the shirt and all three could be directly attributed to the scandal that engulfed the Dolphins last season despite the denial from the team.
The second line of the shirt reads, “I am a warrior and a member of an undefeated team”. There is no question that the Dolphins players are recognizing history as well.
For the Dolphins, team mantras, quotes, slogans, and inspirational messages adorn the training facility from the locker room to the practice field and every hall that brings a player to his destination. It’s common in every NFL locker room but words are words and actions are what wins games. Hopefully the Dolphins are living these shirt slogans and not just wearing them. Still, I would love to get my hands on one.