5 Things We Learned from Miami Dolphins Hard Knocks Episode 2
We knew, or at least had a feeling, how Episode 2 of Hard Knocks was going to end.
What we didn't know were the things we'd learn about the release of wide receiver Chad Johnson, or the other stories we'd learn of in between.
But what else did we learn about?
Joe Philbin Had Other Reasons to Cut Chad Johnson Besides the Arrest
Even before his release, wide receiver Chad Johnson knew he was on a short leash.
"It's good to be home, and I don't have a choice but to succeed," said Johnson on Hard Knocks.
That obviously had something to do with his now-infamous press conference (video behind link NSFW) and the subsequent speaking-to from Coach Philbin. But as we all know now, things would not end well in Miami for Chad.
What we didn't know before the broadcast, though, was that Philbin may have had other reasons to cut the wide receiver formerly known as Ochocinco.
Philbin mentions some tweets from earlier in the offseason, as well as the press conference. Teammates and coaches brought up his inability to learn the Dolphins playbook (hey, Patriots fans, sound familiar?)—but there was one more thing.
"His temperament isn't great for us," said Philbin on the broadcast, "and it's the—when things are good, it's good, but when things aren't so good, he can be a tad, you know..."
Philbin never finishes that sentence, but he doesn't have to. He's already said all he has to. At this point, patience was already running very thin with Johnson. The recent developments, more or less, were an easy out for Philbin.
Side note: Huge shout-out to the HBO crew for giving this scene some real value, even though we all knew what was ultimately going to happen.
Chris Hogan's Nickname Is '7-11'
HBO loves to introduce us and give a closer look at unknown players. Last week, tight end Les Brown got his 15 minutes of fame. This week, wide receiver Chris Hogan got his turn in the spotlight.
Hogan earned the "7-11" nickname because running back Reggie Bush said he is, "Open for business, 24 hours a day, seven days a week."
"Give it to 81, coach. He's always open. Just give it to him. 7-11," said Bush on the broadcast.
Hogan has caught the eyes of some reporters at Dolphins camp, including Armando Salguero of the Miami Herald, who noticed, "All he does is make plays. He doesn't drop passes. He's simply productive."
"He's like a secret weapon," offensive coordinator Mike Sherman said in the episode. "He's caught more balls than any guy on the freaking field. I mean the guy just gets open."
He's not a secret anymore. At least not after some great air-time on Hard Knocks.
The Rookies Got an Interesting Hazing
Whether you like it or not, one of the traditions in the NFL is the hazing of the rookies. One of the more harmless treatments is when the veterans give the rookies a new haircut.
And offensive tackle Jonathan Martin's tricked-out mo-hawk is far from the most interesting, unique or repulsive cut. Guard Josh Samuda got a very interesting and inappropriate haircut depicting male genitalia, with head coach Joe Philbin later putting him on display for his entire team to see.
Notwithstanding obscene haircuts such as Samuda's, haircuts are normal. Ryan Tannehill singing "Lean On Me" should just never happen again. Please, for the benefit of those of us who are not hard of hearing, do not let that happen again.
Wide Receiving Corps a Real Concern for Jeff Ireland
And that was before Chad Johnson was cut.
In an interview with Peter King of Sports Illustrated, general manager Jeff Ireland airs his concerns about the Dolphins receiving corps.
"We've got fours, fives and sixes," said Ireland on the broadcast, as in No. 4, 5 and 6 options at wideout. "What we need are threes, twos and ones. And I have to find out that we have to find out who those threes, twos and ones are, and if we have any of those guys."
This is a problem that has been highlighted all offseason long, as we have tried to figure out which receivers might emerge in Philbin and Sherman's West Coast offense. (Side note: doesn't that sound like an awesome '80s movie?)
And with the workout of Braylon Edwards airing on last week's episode, perhaps we didn't need more evidence that they weren't completely satisfied at receiver. Still, to hear it straight from the GM's mouth could indicate a roster move forthcoming.
David Garrard Injured His Knee While Playing with His Children
OK, so if you were paying attention, you learned about this last week when Nick Underhill of MassLive.com reported it initially.
But the news blindsided everyone: from Joe Philbin to Jeff Ireland to the other quarterbacks.
"I had no idea about anything," quarterback Matt Moore said on the broadcast, when told he'd start. "When were you gonna tell me?"
Garrard was projected to be the starter for the team's first preseason game, but with the injury, Moore was bumped up the depth chart.
With Garrard expected to miss the next two to four weeks following the knee scope, this is a developing story that will certainly continue to get a lot of attention over the remaining three episodes.