Warren Sapp knows what it takes to be great. The 12th overall pick in the 1996 NFL draft had a tremendous 13-year career in the NFL, winning Super Bowl XXXVII with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and racking up 96.5 total sacks, the second most by a defensive tackle in NFL history.
Now a NFL Network Analyst, the soon to be Hall of Fame defensive tackle attended Dolphins training camp on Wednesday morning, and talked about how he believes Miami got better during the offseason, and how good he thinks they can be.
(On if he thinks the Dolphins got better…) – “I like it. I like it a lot. I like the move with Dion Jordan coming up. You’re going to need another pass rusher, and it’s the little five inside with Randy (Starks) and other big guys. So whenever you have another outside rusher that always aides in this wide open NFL that we play now. So, I just like the way (Ryan) Tannehill has commanded his offense. You know, you come in and people telling everybody that yeah he knows his offense, he should be able pick it up and go do some special things. People expect special things, but it takes him a while to get acclimated and I see a more controlled, command quarterback out there now. That always bodes well when you’re a quarterback so ahead of everyone else.”
(On if the Dolphins can challenge the Patriots in the AFC East) – “Of course. We anoint the Patriots like it’s common practice or the place to be. I mean, come on. You see that defense. Only thing you have to do, is not get up (in New England) and have someone throwing (your pre-scripted offense plays) in the trash and they pick it up. Because there’s only two hotels to stay in. Trust me, if you don’t throw away your gameplan (if) you’re mad at the coach, you have a chance not to be down 14-0 early (laughter) and that normally helps you win a football game. ”
(On how good the Dolphins can be this season…) – “I love them. A team that you know you had a bunch of pieces, and if everybody buys in to what (Joe) Philbin is teaching and what (Kevin Coyle) on the other side is doing, they’ve got enough pieces. I mean you look at those two big hogs inside, those tackles, and then you’ve got two speed ends, and the young kid from UM coming too, why can’t you lead it? And then with Brent Grimes and the boys in the back, and the front and the back work together, and you’ve got (Dannell) Ellerbe in the middle. So let’s play.”
(On Lamar Miller) –“You know what, I wanna see him. I wanna see him. Because when you’re talking about being an every down back in this league, it’s a marathon run. I’ve watched his body and he looks like he’s ready to roll. But there’s nothing like seeing it. You gotta take a pounding as a running back. That’s what we (the defense) circle every week. You can throw all week, but we’re stopping that running back. They’re only getting one today and that’s the quarterback. You light up a running back and we’re gonna see what he’s like.”
(On Olivier Vernon and what he brings) –“ (Jeff) Ireland tells me he’s the starting right end right now. I’ll say he’ll be your starting right end week 1. (Vernon) brings a hunger. When you hungry and what happened to him at UM and they took him off the field, this is his chance. There’s nothing in front of him besides what he wants to make. He has a blank canvas. I told him I said get you some bold paint, and let’s make a masterpiece. This game is simple, it’s simple. You just make it hard. You just gotta sharpen that knife, because whenever you walk up on me, I’m cutting you and I’m ready to roll. Oh man I like him.”
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