Seven observations from Dolphins' OTAs

June, 9, 2014
Jun 9
3:00
PM ET
DAVIE, Fla. -- The Miami Dolphins competed their third and final organized team activities session open to the media on Monday. Here are seven observations from the two-hour practice:
  • Dolphins Pro Bowl defensive end Cameron Wake had a dominant practice. He had two sacks in team drills and overall wreaked havoc on Miami's first-team offense. Overall, Miami's defense was better in the trenches compared to the offense. Tannehill had at least three would-be sacks as the offensive line missed its protections.
  • Lamar Miller continues to lead the way in Miami's starting tailback competition. Miller worked with the first team for the third week in a row. So far, Miller also is making more plays in the running game than free-agent pickup Knowshon Moreno, who appears to be working his way into shape. Moreno was the favorite entering the spring after starting for the AFC champion Denver Broncos last season. "He's had a very good camp. ...This is the time as a third-year player that you're ready to make a big contribution," Dolphins head coach Joe Philbin said of Miller.
  • It wasn't the best day for the offense. First-year offensive coordinator Bill Lazor is throwing a lot at his group, and sometimes the early results are sloppy. On Monday, the Dolphins' offense suffered from several drops, two false starts and the poor protection. The entire playbook is virtually installed. Miami's goal is to have everyone on the same page by September.
  • Miami return specialist Marcus Thigpen still is listed as a running back. But he's working exclusively with the wide receivers. Thigpen's roster spot is in jeopardy if the Dolphins can find another quality kick returner. Thigpen doesn't offer much as a running back or receiver. Miami worked out Thigpen, cornerback Brent Grimes and receivers Jarvis Landry, Matt Hazel and Damian Williams on punt returns Monday.
  • Former Dolphins greats Mark Duper and Keith Byers were at practice helping out the younger players. Duper gave Miami a post-practice speech that received an ovation from players. “I like to have some of the guys when they stop by talk to the team about some of the things they learned both on the football field and help them as players and some of the things after football," Philbin said. "Life doesn't end after football ends.”
  • The Dolphins made a position switch for fifth-year offensive tackle Jason Fox. On Monday, Fox worked as the backup left tackle for the first time in practice open to the media. The previous two sessions, Nate Garner was the backup left tackle and Fox was challenging rookie Ja'Wuan James on the right side. It appears James is on his way to securing the job, and the Dolphins are trying to groom Fox potentially to be the first offensive tackle off the bench.
  • The Dolphins had perfect attendance. However, receiver Brandon Gibson and defensive tackle Jared Odrick didn't participate in team drills. They haven't been full go in all three OTAs open to the media.

The Dolphins will wrap up their offseason program next week during mandatory minicamp June 17-19.

James Walker | email

ESPN Miami Dolphins reporter

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