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Dolphins Depth At Receiver Keeps Players On Their Toes

DAVIE (CBSMiami) – The Miami Dolphins held their second straight practice in full pads on Wednesday at the team's training facility in Davie.

With the all-important third preseason game coming up on Saturday, Dolphins head coach Joe Philbin has been treating this week of practice as though it was happening during the regular season to give his players the feel of regular season preparation.

"This week we're trying to simulate a game week like we would have after we play New England [on] September 7," Philbin said. "We're doing scout team looks of Dallas as well, and that's always kind of a process. [It] takes a little while for the guys to get used to it. They've been doing so much competitive [work] against one another, it takes a little while."

An area of the Dolphins that has been under the microscope since the team began on-field workouts earlier this year is the offense.

Miami hired former Philadelphia Eagles quarterback coach Bill Lazor as their new offensive coordinator and he has brought a fast, up-tempo scheme with him to South Florida.

The Dolphins offense has struggled mightily over the past couple seasons and in hopes of turning things around, quarterback Ryan Tannehill has been working with his wide receivers since early in the year on getting their new playbook down.

A big part of this new offense is the timing between Tannehill and his wideouts and so far during the preseason Miami's passing game as looked much improved.

The solid play from the Dolphins receiving corps is not surprising as it's probably the deepest group on the team.

From top to bottom, the talent level among Miami's pass-catchers is very impressive.  When Philbin has to start trimming his roster down to the final 53, it's very likely that some or all of the receivers that the Dolphins can't keep will be picked up by teams who are in need of help at the position.

Guys like Mike Wallace, Brian Hartline, Brandon Gibson and second round draft pick Jarvis Landry are locks to make the 53-man roster.

That leaves two or three spots open, depending on how many receivers Miami decides to keep, for Rishard Matthews, Damian Williams, Armon Binns, Kevin Cone and Ryan Spadola to compete for.

They have all played well up until this point and the competition level amongst the wideouts is a great motivating factor.

"It's great man," Wallace said. "It's great just having guys who can play from one through eight. It's crazy. Every single day you have to come out and work and get better because, if not, the guy behind you is going to step up. Guys are making plays every single day, so it's fun.  It's definitely a challenge and it's going to bring out the best in all of us."

The first cuts won't happen until the August 26 when teams have to trim their rosters down to 75 players.  Four days later is when they have to get down to the final 53.

Watch Miami Take On Dallas This Saturday On CBS4, Your Official Dolphins Station!



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