Dolphins RB Thomas expected to be part of new 'Wildcat'

Posted July 22, 2011 @ 7:05 p.m.
Posted By Kevin Fishbain

We heard in May that Dolphins rookie RB Daniel Thomas would be expected to handle a big workload in his first season in the NFL. He might be adding the "Wildcat" to his list of things to learn when training camp begins.

There are plenty of reasons to think the "Wildcat" has seen its last days in Miami. Former quarterbacks coach David Lee, who introduced the formation to Tony Sparano in 2008, left after last season. Offensive coordinator Dan Henning is also gone. RB Ronnie Brown is expected to leave via free agency and the formation gained only 3.3 yards per play last season.

Lee told PFW earlier this year that he didn't anticipate the formation continuing in Miami, but Henning told the Palm Beach Post that he expects the direct-snap offense to remain.

Dolphins new offensive coordinator Brian Daboll ran the "Wildcat" with the Browns and Josh Cribbs and we hear that Sparano is still a fan of the formation.

Thomas ran some plays out of the "Wildcat" in college and also has some experience as a quarterback in his junior college days. Lee said that Brown's inability to be a legitimate passing threat limited what the team could do out of the formation. Rookie TE/H-back Charles Clay also has "Wildcat" experience.

That means the Dolphins do not have to sign a running back with "Wildcat" experience, let alone an elite player, as we hear their plan remains to count on Thomas to be the team's No. 1 back. Another potential wrinkle to the Dolphins' version of the formation could come in the form of the quarterback they bring in via free agency. Vince Young is a potential target to challenge Chad Henne and could also operate the "Wildcat."

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