Reshad Jones hit the practice field today for the first time since he was placed on IR midway through the 2016 season. When asked, he said it “felt great” to back out there.
Jones signed a contract extension this off-season and pushed himself throughout the summer to get into shape. A little too hard maybe. He hurt his calf while running and that led to him missing the first week of training camp. Today, he rejoined his teammates for the first time.
Practice had to come easy for the savvy veteran who made a play behind the line of scrimmage in today’s practice and he told the media afterwards the he felt comfortable being back in this defense for a second season.
Jones talked about tackling in particular as well and said that they work on pursuit angles and communication. Pursuit angles is such fine art. It was something that was taught to our youth football team and those that were able to figure it out succeed. Baseball helps develop that talent as well, more so for those who play in the outfield.
With Jones back into the fold the Dolphins secondary gets a lot better and the run defense should also improve. Jones is really good in run support and helping cover tight-ends that get behind the linebacker seam.
Following his first practice since last season, Jones talked about getting in his first hit and getting acclimated to playing football again. He said he was excited about the season and talked about the work they are putting in. The full Reshad Jones transcript is below courtesy of MiamiDolphins.com.
Wednesday, August 2, 2017
S Reshad Jones
(How’d it feel just to be out there?) – “It felt good to put the pads on. I haven’t had the pads on in a while. It feels good to be out here and run around with my teammates and get my feet wet a little bit.”
(It didn’t seem like you were limited in anything.) – “No. It was straight go. Like I said, it felt good for me. It’s been seven or eight months since I’ve had pads on. It’s a fun experience. It feels good.”
(How did you tweak the calf?) – “Working out early on with my trainer. It was something minor.”
(They seemed like they wanted to error on the side of caution with you?) – “Yes. They just wanted to be careful. Calves are kind of tricky. When you’re coming back off of them, you can pull it and be out for a long time. They just want to be careful.”
(How did it respond today? Did you think about it at all?) – “No, not at all. It felt pretty good.”
(How do you like that group you are playing with back there with the DBs?) – “We’ve got some talent back there. We have some veteran guys in Nate Allen and T.J. (McDonald) that we brought in that have played a lot of football around this league. It feels good to be back there and kind of communicating and running around with those guys.”
(Did you feel like you were riding a bike leading the guys back there? How did it feel today?) – “It felt great. This is what I do. I’ve been playing in this league for a while. It just felt good to come back out and sweat a little bit, get my feet wet. I feel comfortable.”
(You busted up a running play in team drills. That had to feel pretty nice.) – “Yes, it felt good to get in that backfield for the first time. It felt good.”
(One of the issues last year was tackling. How do you, as a player, alone make that better? Obviously you weren’t there for the second half of the season.) – “You just have to work at it in practice. This is a great time at camp to work on your angles, communication, everybody running to the ball and different things like that. Tackling doesn’t just start on Sunday. It starts out here on the practice field. That’s where you get better at it.”
(How well did you understand the defense last year compared to this year?) – “We’re a lot more comfortable now. It’s the second year up under the belt (with the) same defense. We’ve got veteran guys in. We brought in a guy like ‘L.T.’ (Lawrence Timmons who is) a championship guy, or a champion that knows what it looks like and knows how to get it done. We just have to build off that energy.”
(How much are you itching to get this thing going?) – “I’m ready. I’m excited. I feel good. We did some great things last year but I think the ceiling is very high for this team. We just have to continue to put the work in out here. The sky is the limit for us.”