Three staff guidelines are posted on the partitions close to the 2 separate entrances to the Miami Dolphins’ locker room of their fitness center.
#1 is “Defend the Staff”. #2 is “No Excuses.” #3: “Be on time.”
Between 2 and three, in white lettering that stands out among the many grey surrounding it, is an additional rule, the Dolphins’ first change, if you’ll, to their staff guidelines.
“Adversity is a chance,” it says.
The Dolphins are on a 4-game shedding streak, misplaced their beginning quarterback to his second recognized concussion of the season and bought. a number of different gamers are monitoring accidents earlier than two closing divisional video games that may resolve their playoff destiny.
Now, greater than ever, that mantra might come to the fore for this staff.
“You have to watch out what you want for, apparently,” Dolphins coach Mike McDaniel joked in regards to the motto the staff adopted within the offseason.
Possibly he did not want a lot misfortune. coming off the franchise’s first winless December when quarterback Tua Tagovailoa went out and left deal with Teron Armstead, cornerback Xavien Howard and outdoors linebacker Bradley Chubb among the many Professional Bowl expertise questionable for Sunday.
However it’s how the Dolphins deal with it that would assist decide whether or not Miami both wins this Sunday (with a win and the New York Jets lose in Seattle), advances to a “winnable” matchup with the Jets within the AFC. for the final place sport. wildcard spot (with wins by the Dolphins and Jets) or must beat New York within the Week 18 finale, plus get assist from a New England loss in Buffalo (a loss to the Patriots).
“It occurs in various levels,” McDaniel continued. “It is superb what occurs while you take a look at issues and the way typically you may say, “Wow, due to that it actually got here right down to it.” So right here we’re. It has been that manner for the month of December and also you study quite a bit about folks.
“You study quite a bit in regards to the staff you’re employed with, the gamers within the locker room, the coaches. You’ll be able to’t disguise proper there. Your true colours present, and I’ve seen a staff actually assault adversity arduous by working by way of it. We had one in all our favourite weeks of apply. The dressing room could be very tight and push ahead so I am excited to see what they’ll do collectively on Sunday.”
Dolphins gamers really feel like they’ve taken that strategy all season, no matter Tagovailoa’s first loss from a concussion that prompted him to overlook two and a half video games, with key defensive gamers like security Brandon Jones, defensive finish Emmanuel Ogbah. or cornerback Nick Needham goes down for the season or consistently shuffles the offensive line.
The chance for cornerback Cader Cohu, who has performed in 13 video games this yr and began 11 getting into Sunday, was constructed on his and his unit’s struggles. The Dolphins have been with out Byron Jones at cornerback all season. Needham was misplaced for the yr with a torn Achilles tendon. Kohou and Keion Crossen missed time. Thrill Williams’ season ended within the preseason.
“It is nothing new,” mentioned Kohu, whose locker is closest to the signal at one finish of the room. “Mike at all times preaches stuff like that. We’re form of used to it by now, so it doesn’t matter what occurs, we simply do not forget that quote.
“It is simply one thing that individuals must have of their day by day lives. Not nearly soccer. Adversity is a chance so that you can show your self. You simply must be affected person.”
Veteran linebacker Elandon Roberts expressed in fewer phrases how he turns adversity into alternative.
“I simply must give attention to New England,” he mentioned twice when requested in regards to the subject.
Sunday, and probably the finale towards the Jets, is an opportunity for veteran quarterback and Miami native Teddy Bridgewater to doubtlessly lead his hometown staff to its first playoff look in six years.
“The NFL is about ‘what do you do now?'” offensive coordinator Frank Smith mentioned. “It is an amazing second for us at this level within the season, particularly as a result of issues have not gone our manner within the final two weeks.”
Might or not it’s an opportunity for Mike Gesicki to rise from the ashes after the bottom utilization of his profession? Gesicki had two of his 4 touchdowns this season, catching a move from Bridgewater within the fourth quarter for the Dolphins on Oct. 16 towards the Minnesota Vikings.
“Me and him undoubtedly have some chemistry,” Gesicki mentioned. “I believe Teddy is a simple man to play with. He form of sees issues earlier than they occur, understands the sport. I believe for me as a participant, I form of play the identical manner. If I see house, I’ll run in direction of it. I am not going to run only for cowl.”
If the Dolphins can overcome this stage of adversity and qualify for the postseason, it may bode properly for his or her possibilities of pulling off an upset or two en path to the playoffs, just like final season’s San Francisco 49ers, the place McDaniel was offensive. coordinator If this staff can rise to the problem, it’ll miss the playoffs and we’ll by no means know.
In spite of everything, McDaniel has religion due to what he sees from his gamers within the locker room.
“This relationship is actual,” the Dolphins coach mentioned, “they usually really feel responsible about preventing for this staff.”