Samson Satele happy to come 'full circle'


DAVIE, Fla. -- It’s been quite a football journey for new Miami Dolphins center Samson Satele.

What was old is new again for Miami in the middle of its offensive line. The same player the Dolphins traded to the Oakland Raiders in 2009 for Jake Grove is back at center after signing a one-year contract Sunday night.

Satele rotated first-team reps at center with Sam Brenner Monday in his first practice. He is the new favorite to replace injured center Mike Pouncey (hip) in Week 1 of the regular season.

"It's a full circle," Satele said afterward. "In 2009, I was bummed. But it's a business and I understand it. It's good to be back. No snow in December, so I'm happy."

Although the Dolphins won't admit it, the hope is Satele quickly rounds into form and solidifies Miami's center position. The Dolphins have rotated Brenner, Nate Garner and Shelley Smith at the position in training camp -- all with shaky results.

There have been at least a dozen bad snaps in training camp so far, as well as inconsistent blocking in the middle. Satele, an eight-year veteran, said he cannot recall the last time he had a bad snap. He has 98 career starts for the Dolphins, Raiders and most recently the Indianapolis Colts.

"He's competing for a job just like those other 14 offensive linemen," Dolphins head coach Joe Philbin said. “We’re looking for guys who can play the right way, with good technique and with discipline.”

Satele looked in pretty good shape for his first practice. He showed decent movement and physicality in Miami's full-padded practice. Satele said he spent most of Sunday trying to learn the new playbook and going through the reps on Monday helped.

Satele went to the playoffs two straight seasons as the starting center in Indianapolis. He says the Dolphins are capable of doing the same this year.

“We got a lot of potential here to push for a championship,” Satele said. “We just got to put it together. I got to put it together faster than everybody."

Satele expects to play Friday when the Dolphins open their preseason opener against the Atlanta Falcons.

“Oh yeah, I’ll be ready,” Satele said. “This is not my first rodeo. My first day, it was not as good as I wanted it. But tomorrow will be better, and Wednesday will be better and Friday we will be going on.”