Dolphins could be updating the Wildcat


After a largely ineffective year for the Wildcat in Miami, many assumed the Dolphins were nearly done with the formation.

Ben Volin of the Palm Beach Post makes a convincing case that the formation may be getting a reboot rather than a cancellation.

The first piece of evidence: Center Mike Pouncey didn’t receive a playbook from the team when he was at the facility, but he reportedly did receive “material pertaining to the Wildcat” so he could get familiar with certain plays and concepts.

Pouncey fits the mold of a quick, athletic center who could run the scheme.  He also has experience in it.   So does running back Daniel Thomas and H-back Charles Clay, who were both drafted by the Dolphins.

The Dolphins downplayed Thomas’ experience with the scheme, but drafting him should help to keep Miami’s options with the Wildcat alive in 2011, even if Ronnie Brown is off the team.

18 responses to “Dolphins could be updating the Wildcat

  1. It didn’t work because they modified it and Brown was way too tentative. When it worked, he was reacting to the defense. Lately, he has been tentative because he seems to have a plan about what he wants to do and shuts down when it isn’t there. They could still use it every once in a while but at at awkward times. I would rather they let the offense gain rhythm rather than killing it for the sake of of a favorite play.

  2. what is insanity? doing the same thing over and over again expecting a different result every time. please miami, stop this wildcat BS!!!

  3. We obviously don’t trust Henne. We have to minimize the risk by making someone other than the starting QB take the snap. For whatever reason we refuse to swing on a 1st rd pick. We prefer to waste 2nd rd picks on the Pat White and Chad Henne’s of the draft. Or use 2nd rd picks on washed up guys like Culpepper. Welcome to Miami, Bulger, McNabb, or whomever.

  4. How about them developing Henne into a viable first rate NFL quarterback, instead of rebooting a gimmick offense? If they are drafting players based on how they fit the wildcat offense, and not how good they will be in the NFL the next regime will.

  5. Wild cat is largely ineffective because there isn’t much to it. Team catch on and can stop it. It is useless and I am glad the Packers, even with Cobb, don’t plan on using it. Its a waste of time.

  6. Rather than abandon the Wildcat completely the team opted to remove it’s teeth and claws and see how things work out.

  7. The reason the wildcat offense has not produced the same results for the Finz is simple. The “strength” of the wildcat is its numbers. By moving the Qb to the edge where a wideout would be, taking that wideout off the field, and replacing him with a back that plays a blocker. So basically you are putting an extra blocker on the field (plus the guard and/or center usually pulls). This is why certain plays on the wildcat still flourish. The reason the formation as a whole has declined in effectiveness is the Finz have been trying to get to fancy with it. The reverses, passes, and all other “wrinkles”, sole purpose is to stop defenses from overloading on the main 2 backs that usually carry out of the system. It is NOT a gimmick and it has nothing to do with Chad Henne. In fact David Lee the Dolphins QB coach started using the formation because he likes working with running backs who can throw (Ronnie Brown played QB in high school). When they run the formation the way it was design it rocks, when the try to get cute and pull trick play it doesn’t. I hope they break it out again and excel just to shut people up.

  8. The decline in production of the Wildcat had less to do with “teams figuring it out” than a decline in the personnel running it. The O-line last year had problems with second-level blocks, which was not a problem when it succeeded in previous years. As far as “gimmickry”, it’s quite the opposite: a very basic offense which is transparent, and which challenges the other defense to stop what they know is coming. If Pouncey is as good as we’re being told by Miami Brass, and if Garner comes back healthy, we could see substantial improvement. Only negative of it is that it potentially takes the traditional QB out of his rhythm(Henning seemed inexplicably unaware of this)-you could line him up wide, but then it’s 10-1/2 vs. 11. Still, for the doubters, take a look at Brad Smith tape for the Jets. It’s about the personnel, not the gimmick.

  9. This is an artful way to get around the prohibition against communicating with the players…

    Simply give each rookie some limited plays and send them off to mingle with other players.

    Nice – I’ll be the NFL doesn’t even pick up on that.


  10. How about updating a regular offense?????????!!!!!!!

    Make it simple!!!!

    Gee, someone not looking like a quarterback in shot gun???

    The defenses will be shocked!!!

    They say a key to a bad record is not having a quarterback!!!! Miami, don’t be surprised if you’re the worst team next season!!!!

  11. The problem last year was not so much personnel as much as play calling. How many times last year did we run Wildcat on 1st and 2nd down with Henne off the field and then send him in for the critical 3rd and 9 play. That is setting up for failure. Use the Wildcat to catch defenses off guard, not as a base offense.

  12. the ‘gimmickry’ and ‘one time thing’ naysayers don’t know what they are talking about… it went two years at nearly 7 YPC and a TD every ~8 plays…. no other play was close in the entire NFL… the Phins gained more yards with it than the entire league combined those years….

    in the 3rd year previous posters re: personnel were correct… if your O line is getting run over and the back gets tentative.. it doesn’t work. Also, calling it at stupid times didn’t help much. The new OC should help with that.

  13. More wildcat just shows that they don’t believe in Henne. You don’t see Indianapolis, Green Bay or Pittsburgh running it.

  14. @ampats, check your history, big fella. You don’t need to be pitying this franchise-save it for the Jets. Oh, btw, when you’re having beers with Bill, please request a permanent change to the “throwback” unis with the Minuteman, and ditch the USFL garbage they wear nowadays. Russ Francis wouldn’t be caught dead in that ugly shyte.

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