AFC Notes: Dolphins, Jets, Patriots


Dolphins HC Mike McDaniel is pleased with how OL Austin Jackson has adjusted to playing right tackle.

Been pretty pumped about how all all the guys have really gone after the techniques. And we’re really focusing on some position versatility right now. And when Austin Jackson is playing right tackle, been very pleased because he’s approaching it the only way you can get better as a player. And that’s complete commitment to it,” McDaniel said via “We’re asking people to do hard things at an elite level. So you try to do it over and over and over. And he’s diligently attacking that.

McDaniel said that he’s happy with the current group of guys on the roster, but wouldn’t rule out adding someone before the season that can make them better, particularly speaking at the center position. Michael Deiter started last season but the team has worked free agent signing Connor Williams there this spring. 

I think you have to be careful to pigeonhole who is doing what and when. I think that that isn’t fair to the process. I will say that if no other players are added that I’m going to be very confident in our starting center next year. I’m excited about who we have. But you don’t close the door or pigeonhole anything because it’s just not fair to the process. These guys are out here sweating and and what is this, May or June 1? And you wouldn’t be doing service to June 1 or 2nd if you made some bold statement. that’s why we practice and that’s why we work diligently as we do.

  • Dolphins QB Tua Tagovailoa said McDaniel is more positive than any coach he’s been around: “I’ve never been around a coach like this. My dad was hard on me. My high school coach was hard on me. Coach Saban was hard on me. All the coaches I’ve had have been hard on me. But he takes a different alleyway on teaching and learning.” (Safid Deen)
  • Williams mentioned he was told he’ll likely play at center. (Barry Jackson)
  • Jackson writes Williams manning the center role will likely give Liam Eichenberg a chance to line up at left guard and compete with Solomon Kindley for the job. 


Jets HC Robert Saleh said that first-round CB Ahmad Gardner still must earn the No. 1 role with CB Bryce Hall currently owning the top spot. 

“I do want to be clear, and I know, like you just said, fourth overall and I’m not trying to stir up headlines, it probably will, he still has to go earn it,” Saleh said, via ProFootballTalk. “Bryce has started, he’s taking the one reps and it’s not for show. You have to earn your right to play football. Just because you were drafted in a certain spot it doesn’t mean anything.”

  • Jets HC Robert Saleh praised WR Denzel Mims and his development: “He’s doing better, he’s in fantastic shape…He’s a lot further along today then he was a year ago.” (Eric Allen)


Patriots CB Malcolm Butler has been away from the league for a year and knows he must prove himself to some of his former teammates and coaches.

“I feel like I have a lot to prove, especially to myself,” Butler said, via Mass Live. “If I do it myself, I’ll prove it to my teammates at the same time. So that’s why I’m working hard every day and trying to stay focused. Feeling good. Feeling fresh. Well, I was until I got here and started running around. Rejuvenated. Took some time off to handle some things and I’m back here now… I’m back in football shape, but I’ve got more work to do.”

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