Dolphins players want to play for Dan Campbell


After the Miami Dolphins made the change from Joe Philbin to Dan Campbell there has been a different “feel” around the facility. The players love Campbell and even ex-Dolphins players have said that he is totally different than the person he replaced. Brice McCain talked to reporters as posted on and it’s obvious that the players didn’t much care for Joe Philbin.

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While Joe Philbin was the head coach many players talked about how much of a nice guy he was but very few said he was a good X’s and O’s coach. In fact, none that I can recall. Campbell isn’t being talked about as an X’s and O’s coach either but the accolades that Campbell is receiving shows a major change in how the players feel.

It’s only been a week since Campbell took over but the players are already seeing a big difference in the way the club is being managed.

McCain spoke about how excited the players were to play for Campbell and that he makes them want to “run through a brick wall” for him. McCain added that the players are able to play a lot more freely without the fear of making a mistake.

During Joe Philbin’s time with the Dolphins Miami played not to make mistakes and that took away a lot of the aggressiveness the players have. Miami tended to play very tight and it showed on defense and on offense. Offensively the Dolphins were not very aggressive at all. Often steering away from the running game in favor of a passing attack but even then Ryan Tannehill was handcuffed by not being allowed to run, staying in the pocket and not rolling out, and not being allowed to make changes at the line of scrimmage. Those are all on Philbin.

McCain also states the obvious that in the end it’s up to the players to go out and make plays. While that is true being coached in a way that allows the players the mentality to get physical and make plays gives the players an opportunity to buy into the system. Something defensively wasn’t being done under Kevin Coyle. How well the Dolphins respond to new defensive coordinator Lou Anarumo will go along way to how they finish this season.

As McCain points out the team has a lot of talent especially on defense yet that talent has not made an impact at all this season. McCain says that the team was playing uptight the first four games and if that is true and the shackles have been removed we should see a more relaxed team on Sunday where the players are allowed and able to use their talents and physicality to take the games on themselves. It’s becoming obvious that Campbell is putting the onus of winning on the players’ shoulders. It’s also starting to become apparent that the players prefer it that way.

Miami will play their first Dan Campbell coached game this Sunday in Nashville against the Titans.