Home Miami dolphins Miami Dolphins first-round pick Jaelan Phillips practicing patience

Miami Dolphins first-round pick Jaelan Phillips practicing patience

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Jaelan Phillips was the first edge defenseman selected in the 2021 NFL Draft, but the Miami Dolphins’ first-round pick has yet to make much of an impact early in his rookie season.

In fact, it would be fair to call the first two games of his NFL career uneventful, both in terms of the playing time he got and the number of games he played.

But while the former University of Miami star admits the transition to the NFL has been tough, he’s eager to start shaking things up.

“Honestly, when it comes to snaps, I can only really control two things, it’s my attitude, my effort, right?” Phillips said after practice on Wednesday. “So when I go out, no matter how many snaps I played, I felt like I was still sort of settling down. I don’t think I’m completely comfortable yet, so I really works on being able to let go and have fun, because at the end of the day I think that’s the most important thing when you talk about success, it’s just being able to let go I’m just grateful for the pieces that I was able to play and the few little half tackles we were able to make, so it’s really good to get my feet wet.

In those first two games, Phillips played 40 snaps in defense and recorded three assisted tackles and a quarterback.

This production is paltry compared to that of Gregory Rousseau, former University of Miami passing specialist and first-round pick in 2021, who has already made three sacks, including two against the Dolphins last Sunday.

But Phillips is highlighting his year at UM when it comes to a statistically slow start – he finished the 2020 season with eight sacks after missing one in the first three games.

“It’s kind of heartwarming to realize that you have to be patient with yourself,” Phillips said. “Everything is happening at the rate that it’s supposed to be happening. And so for me, I can certainly take comfort in knowing that I just need to be patient with myself and understand that good things will come as long as I do what I am. supposed to do. “

Phillips has been used in a number of ways so far this season as an edge defender, whether it’s rushing the passer, putting the edge, or taking cover.

It also didn’t help that he missed time during training camp due to a groin injury.

“It definitely took me a second to sort of get back into things, but I feel like I’m starting to get there, for sure,” Phillips said.

“There’s a lot going on, the patterns are more complex. The more I need to know, obviously you start to think a lot, (and) it kind of slows you down. And so I think that’s going to be the key for me. allow myself to be sufficiently prepared and to feel comfortable with defense and what my responsibilities are so that when I step on the pitch I don’t have to think at all, I can just go. “

That said, Phillips is confident in the direction he is taking and his knowledge keeps growing every day.

“I really think a year ago today I was definitely not as smart as I am now and in a year I’m going to be 10 times smarter,” he said. about persistence and the ability to take criticism and really build on what you want to do.