Terron Armstead chip-blocked the defensive end to the offensive guard, and then the Miami Dolphins’ new left tackle sprinted about 10 yards downfield on a right-side run to seal off the outside linebacker during Friday’s early 11-on-11 period.
It was the first time the Dolphins’ big-ticket free-agent addition participated in an 11-on-11 session wearing pads — and he was seemingly testing out his surgically repaired knee.
The 10-year veteran the Dolphins signed to a five-year, $87.5 million deal, which guaranteed him $30.1 million, has sparingly participated in practice, much less 11-on-11 work.
So it was good to see Armstead on the field, and moving like the elite athlete he’s known to be for a handful of snaps.
“This is a process,” said Armstead, a three-time Pro Bowl selection. “We are building up to peak performance.”
Armstead missed nine games last season because of elbow and knee problems he played through, and the thought process has been to get the 31-year-old ready for the Sept. 11 season opener against the New England Patriots, which is five weeks away.
Armstead is aware he needs practice reps. How much?
“You never want to put a count on it, ‘I need this amount of reps.’ It’s a feel,” Armstead said. “You want to get the rust knocked off with your technique. Get your eyes, hands and feet where they need to be. That can take however long. Ideally, I want to be able to feel like I’m season-ready as early as possible. But I’m not there yet.”
Next week’s joint practices against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, which features one of the best defensive lines in the NFL, might provide him a better indication of exactly where he is — if he participates.
Connor Williams and Adam Pankey, two of the three Dolphins players handling the snaps at center, are each struggling with erratic snaps that are off the mark….
Tyreek Hill returned to practice after sitting out Wednesday’s session with a maintenance day and picked up right where he left off. He caught a touchdown in the back of the end zone from Tua Tagovailoa during Miami’s goal-line session. Hill finished the day with four receptions during 11-on-11 work….
Cornerback Xavien Howard locked down Hill during 1-on-1s, continuing his dominance during their daily battles. While Howard doesn’t have the same level of efficiency defending Hill during the limited 11-on-11 reps he participates in, the 1-on-1 periods have been a showcase for the Pro Bowl cornerback’s superior technique….
Defensive tackle John Jenkins continues his run as the defensive lineman who can’t be stopped during 1-on-1 drills against offensive linemen. Jenkins also had a nice backfield stop on a Sony Michel run during a team period…..
Kicker Jason Sanders was 6-for-6 on his field goal attempts, with his longest going for 52-yards.
Teddy Bridgewater doesn’t have a reputation as a sensational practice performer, but he’s progressively making strides in this west coast offense, and was the top performer among the quarterbacks during Friday’s session. While all of Miami’s quarterbacks took would-be sacks during this heavy blitz day, Bridgewater had a knack for getting the ball out just before defenders crashed on him. One of his completions would have turned into a 65-yard Braylon Sanders touchdown.
Austin Jackson, the Dolphins’ starting right tackle, has had a respectable camp so far. But the way Emmanuel Ogbah manhandled him all practice hints that the introduction of pads might be the equalizer. Jackson seemingly struggled on his pass sets, and the run game was less productive than usual on the right side during Friday’s practice. During second- and third-team reps, Jackson could be spotted working on his technique on his own.
Tailback Raheem Mostert, who has sporadically practiced because of the knee injury that forced him to miss all but one game last season, participated in 11-on-11 reps and showcased the speed he’s known for on a couple of runs….
Fullback Alec Ingold, who spent the offseason rehabbing a knee injury, practiced wearing a red jersey, and actually participated in 11-on-11 periods. That’s odd because the red jersey indicates players who shouldn’t be touched. Quarterbacks and injured players wear the red jersey…..
Safety Clayton Fejedelem sat out Friday’s practice with an unknown injury….
Even though cornerback Elijah Campbell is off the physically-unable-to-perform list, he’s not practicing with his teammates yet.