Joe Philbin on Dolphins Agreeing to HBO’s ‘Hard Knocks’: “This was a better time to do it than year two, year three, year four.”June 4, 2012 – 8:30 am by Steven Cuce
Our friends over at HBO may have gotten turned down by quite a few NFL teams over the past few months, but ‘Hard Knocks’ finally has a suitor: The Miami Dolphins. Joe Philbin appeared to be a little hesitant about the decision before NFL Films met with him, but after the meeting he was sold.
The Dolphins do bring some intrigue to ‘Hard Knocks’. They are a team that has been near or at the bottom of the pack in AFC East over the last decade, thanks in large part to the extremely inconsistent play they’ve received at the all important quarterback position. With a first year head coach and the promise of a first round quarterback, there should be plenty of appeal for NFL fans this August when HBO turns on the cameras.
Joe Philbin joined WQAM in Miami with Joe Rose to discuss the Miami Dolphins deciding to be on HBO’s ‘Hard Knocks’, cutting players with the cameras live on HBO’s ‘Hard Knocks’, Ryan Tannehill’s progress at this point and Ryan Tannehill being ahead of the game with his college coach being his offensive coordinator now on the Dolphins.
What made the Miami Dolphins decide that they wanted to do HBO’s ‘Hard Knocks’?
“Again a couple of reasons. We were skeptical prior to our meeting with the people from NFL Films. I think when you sit back and analyze it. NFL Films I think has been shooting NFL games since the 1962 NFC Championship game. They have been a company that has been around for 50 years that has a tremendous body of work, a lot of integrity, a lot of trust that they have built up with the teams they have worked with in the past. As we listened to the presentation it just made sense. My feeling was this was a better time to do it than year two, year three, year four. As I told our players and as you know Joe last time I checked on Sunday afternoons there are going to be a bunch of camera laying around, so we are teaching these guys how to block, how to tackle, how to catch the football. I think we can do that whether there is one camera or 50 around. I’m sure it’ll take a year to two to get adjusted, but in talking to some guys who have been through it these guys kind of weave into the fabric of the team and after a couple of days you really don’t notice that they are around.”
Have you thought about how tough it is going to be cutting players with the cameras on especially since it will be the first time doing this as a head coach?
“Yeah we certainly talked to those guys about it. Obviously as an assistant you’ve dealt with it in the past cause you’ve worked with guys and you have been with them since…if they are rookies you have been with them since April. If they are veterans some guys you have been with for years and we all know that at some point in time careers end whether voluntary or involuntary. The people at NFL films said they do their best to show these scenes with respect to the player and we’ve told our guys that day one since the first team meeting any successful relationship gets built on trust and communication and we’ve gotta be honest and open. We got 89 guys sitting in the chairs right now and at the end of the day we know we can only keep 53. That’s a harsh reality, so I know it’s going to be done professionally and it’s going to be done with class. It’s not going to be easy. It’s not pleasant, but it’s necessary in this business just the way it is.”
What have you seen out of Ryan Tannehill so far? Can you see Ryan Tannehill keeping up with these guys or is it going to take time?
“I think he’s very close. I think it’s very close. I think they all bring certain attributes to the table. I will say the room itself and the quality of individuals in the room I think is excellent. As you know Matt Moore was voted as the most valuable player. He played well down the stretch and he’s picked up the offense very well. David Garrard when you look at this last season and he was active, but he didn’t play last year. He played very well in 2010 and he’s been working his tail off and then we got a young guy who has some familiarity with the offense, but not a lot of familiarity with the NFL game, but he is holding his own very much, so it’s been a good competition so far.”
Ryan Tannehill has his college coach as his offensive coordinator. How has Ryan Tannehill picked up the offense so far?
“I think it has been a help for him. What’s there 260 guys who are drafted? Somewhere in that vicinity. I don’t know if very many have the comfort level that Ryan did that his college coach is sitting here now and instructing him in a very similar instance. It’s not exactly the same and there’s different elements of the offense that he didn’t have in Texas A & M, but still it’s gotta be comforting. That’ll wear off eventually and it’s still going to get down to what kind of decisions does he make? How accurate does he throw the football? What kind of production do we have when he is leading the offense? That’ll be more important as we go through this evaluation process.”