The change in offensive line coaches from Pat Flaherty to Dave DeGuglielmo hits a bump in the road during the Miami Dolphins’ joint practices with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, whose defensive line dominates.
TAMPA — When Dolphins coach Brian Flores surprisingly changed offensive line coaches two weeks ago, he went from one coach who wasn’t on the same page as him to another coach who produced one of the best lines in the league last year.
But there’s a price to pay, and Tuesday, the Dolphins paid it.
Early in the first of two joint practices with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, the Dolphins allowed a sack. Then another. Then another.
This came within a span of five snaps during team drills against Ndamukong Suh & Co. And that doesn’t even count the false start mixed in.
Jesse Davis, who has moved from right guard to right tackle, said the line is undergoing growing pains following the coaching change from Pat Flaherty to Dave DeGuglielmo.
"It was different because you’ve got another guy coming in," Davis said. "So all of us were like trying to figure each other out, going with the coach none of us really worked with. So we went back a little bit just to go forward.
"But this week, I think we should take great strides with this coaching staff."
The test won’t be so much in Wednesday’s practices, but rather, when the Dolphins play the Bucs under Friday night lights at Raymond James Stadium.
Davis knows there’s work to be done before then.
"I think it was a little bit a lack of communication between us and some of the running backs," he said of Tuesday’s errors. "I’m not sure. Just got to watch the film, break it down. We’ll figure it out."
Flores was quick to acknowledge the Dolphins need to figure things out quickly.
"We could’ve done a better job there and I think that’s good," Flores said. "We need to see that. It’s better for that to happen in a practice setting. We learn from it and make the corrections and hopefully that’s better in a game. I think that’s part of the learning process here."
After swapping positions, Davis joked the first thing he must figure out is what to call himself — a guard or a tackle.
"Shoot, I don’t even remember," he said. "Right now my home is right tackle. That’s what I’m going to put my foot forward with. I’ve still got to get a lot of work at it."
DeGuglielmo was the architect of Indianapolis’ offensive line last year. With him calling the shots, Davis is optimistic things will improve.
"A lot more intense," Davis said. "A lot more demanding, which is really good for us, especially for a young O-line. We need that.
" … For us, getting the quarterback touched is an absolute no. It’s the fastest way out of the building. Getting that cleaned up is going to be really fun. It will be really fun to play when Fitz (Ryan Fitzpatrick) is back there, has his time, or (Josh) Rosen has his time."