The NFL made a point of promoting today’s “My Cause, My Cleats” day, which allowed NFL players to wear shoes with special messages on their shoes. But in Miami, there are questions about whether some players put on the wrong footwear.
Dolphins coach Adam Gase said after his team lost at Baltimore that several players fell down and that the team needs to examine whether it had the right cleats for each player.
“We have to go back and look at that, because we really can’t have that happen. We had a couple chances to make some big plays, and we’ve got guys falling down. . . . We just have to make sure that we have the right equipment,” Gase said, via Adam Beasley of the Miami Herald.
Gase did not blame the special cleats, but it’s fair to wonder whether some players were wearing shoes they weren’t accustomed to, or the wrong length of cleats for the field conditions, because of the “My Cause, My Cleats” campaign. One player who wore the special shoes, Jarvis Landry, changed his shoes during the game. Two other players who wore the special shoes, Andre Branch and Jay Ajayi, said they were having problems with footing, but both of them said that was the result of the field in Baltimore.
“The grass was terrible,” Branch said. “We knew that coming into the game. It’s no excuse at all. But that’s the atmosphere we played in. Those were the elements we had to work with. They played on the same surface as we did.”
Ajayi, who gained 61 yards on 12 carries, agreed.
“It was slick out there. You saw some guys sliding around,” Ajayi said. “There were definitely some people losing traction out there.”
Whether the problem was the cleats or the problem was the quality of the field surface in Baltimore, either way, it’s a problem the NFL needs to monitor.