AFC Notes: Dolphins, Jets, Patriots


Dolphins DC Josh Boyer has noticed that EDGE Jaelan Phillips has started becoming more of a pro this offseason and doing the little things right such as nutrition, and attention to detail.

Jaelan is a guy that wants to be great and wants to do everything perfect,” Josh Boyer said, via Dolphins Wire. “I think he’s finding that happy balance of work-failure to bring the best out of himself. A couple of pounds here and there, it’s more nutrition-based than it is football or playing-based.

Dolphins OLB coach Tyrone McKenzie echoed Boyer’s sentiments, saying that he’s noticed Phillips has been in-tune during meetings and is asking questions looking to do everything he can to get better.

He’s been so eager to get better. From Day 1, we started from ground zero and worked up,” McKenzie said. “He’s had success in the preparation. His approach has been great in the classroom with [Boyer], with me in my meeting room, with [coach Mike McDaniel] in the squad meeting room. He’s taken that to preparation on the practice field.”


Jets CB D.J. Reed said he’s getting “settled in” to his new team and thinks their locker room has a “great vibe throughout.” 

“The first week was rough, just trying to get my living situation set and figuring things out on the go, but now that I’m settled in it feels like home,” Reed said, via Carolina Hendershot of the team’s official site. “All the dudes here are good people … guys are very knowledgeable when we’re talking football. When talking to the young dudes, I’m giving them advice that I had when I was a rookie. I’m even learning from the rookies, too, and the guys that played last year. It’s a great vibe throughout the whole locker room and it’s pretty exciting over here.”

Reed views Jets’ first-round CB Sauce Gardner as a “lockdown cornerback” and a complete player at his position. 

“I love him, man. I watched his tape and he’s everything that the media is saying he is, he’s a lockdown cornerback,” Reed said. “He did it in college, and I believe he can do it at the NFL. He’s prototypical, he has elite characteristics, and he plays with great eye discipline. He can catch, too. He makes great plays on the ball and it’s just an overall complete cornerback in my opinion. I’m looking forward to balling with him.”

Reed is eager to face the Ravens and Lamar Jackson in Week 1 of the regular season. 

“I’m looking forward to it,” Reed said. “I want to play against Lamar Jackson, I think he’s one of the best quarterbacks in the NFL as a former MVP,” Reed said. “The whole schedule is a good schedule. I want to play against the best and we’re playing against a lot of good teams, so I’m looking forward to it.”


Patriots OLB coach Steve Belichick had high praise of OLB Josh Uche and called him a “part of the blueprint” for their defense. 

“I see him as part of them, since it’s the hot word right now, part of the blueprint. I see him being an important piece to the puzzle for us going forward,” Belichick said, via Andy Hart of Audacy. “There’s a lot of factors to it besides what he’s going to do. We have to see what everybody else does and work the pieces around from there. I see Josh being a big part of this defense. We’ll see how the competition plays out. Josh is another guy who’s doing everything right, who’s putting a lot of hard work in, setting up as well as he could to help us out on the field once we get to camp. It’s all just a building process. He’s done everything right so far.”

When asked about replacing the LBs Kyle Van Noy and Dont’a Hightower with younger players, Belichick responded that he’s confident in their current players. 

“I would agree with that. Yeah, these guys haven’t played as much football as those guys,” Belichick said. “Even though, again, we kind of have to see what we’ve got here, but we got what we got. And we feel good about it. So we’ll shoot our shot and see how it goes.”

Belichick explained that they must build the team by adapting to obstacles they face. 

“I don’t look at it as developmental, from the aspect of you’re starting with nothing and just kind of see what you get and throw it out there,” Belichick said. “You brought up an interesting word with the blueprint, so in terms of building structures you need a blueprint going in and I’m sure things happen along the way. I’ve never really built a house or anything like that, but when I’m building my daughter’s playhouse certain obstacles come my way and you just gotta react and adapt to what happens. That’s what we always try to do. We put a plan in place. We have a foundation. But at the same time we’re always changing and adapting and expanding what we do. So we’ll try some of that stuff out and see how it looks. If it looks good we’ll keep going in that direction. If it doesn’t, we’ll try to do what we feel is best for the team. We’re just working through what we got and kind of see how it shakes out. But we absolutely have a plan going forward.”

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  1. As an old Jets fan (I saw their one SB win), it’s been a while since I was lookin’-forward to a season.
    Aside from how Joe Douglas has transformed the team, a pretty tough schedule poses a great challenge/opportunity, for all the younguns to be thrown into the fire. They’ll quickly grow up… or blow up! A great learning year… then watch out (of course, it’s all contingent upon Zach choosing to win, over being “the Man.”

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