Posted: 1:25 pm Monday, February 28th, 2011
Dolphins QB Chad Henne hard at work learning team’s ‘New England offense’ so he can teach it during NFL lockout
By Post Staff
PALM BEACH GARDENS — Chad Henne took a little time off Monday to play golf with Dolphins owner Stephen Ross and Hall of Famer Bob Griese at PGA National, site of the Fin Cup, a charity golf event that kick-started this week’s Honda Classic.
But Henne has had a busy month, to say the least.
Henne said that after taking a couple weeks of vacation in January, he has worked diligently with new offensive coordinator Brian Daboll to learn his offense before the lockout potentially begins on Friday. New quarterbacks coach Karl Dorrell has also been sitting in on the voluntary meetings so that all three can get on the same page.
Henne needs to learn the offense quickly. Since the potential lockout will prevent him and his teammates from working with their coaches this offseason, the Dolphins need Henne to serve as a surrogate coach and offensive coordinator this offseason.
“I’m more concentrated on this new offense and learning this new offense to master it, and be the guy that can teach the other guys out there more than anything than looking back at last year,” Henne said.
Henne said the the players have organized their own offseason practices to prepare for the 2011 season. They already found a field to hold their own practices, and hope to start on March 28, usually the same date in which the offseason workouts begin.
“That’s when I’ll try to help install the offense and get the guys on the right page, because who knows how long this could last?” Henne said. “Hopefully a lot of guys will come back and we can work out and build some bonding and camaraderie there.”
Henne said he likes the new offense being installed by Daboll, who coached receivers and quarterbacks with the Patriots and Jets before serving as Cleveland’s offensive coordinator the past two years.
“It’s a New England offense, where he came from. It’s New England with a little Jets in it,” he said. “I like it a lot. It’s similar to what I was used to at Michigan. … It’s a good offense for a quarterback, it’s quarterback friendly, and I think with the athletes that we have on the team we can really take off and hopefully have something happen good.”
Henne is trying not to be too reflective this offseason even though his 2010 season didn’t go according to plans. While he knows he needs to improve — he finished with 15 touchdowns against 19 interceptions while the Dolphins missed the playoffs at 7-9 — he’s trying to put 2010 in the past.
“Obviously I understand that I need to improve on some of the things from last year but now it’s a new offense, it’s a new book and a new chapter,” Henne said.
“I definitely took some time and looked at myself, things that I need to improve on – obviously the turnover ratio – but now it’s kind of, what I can do better and involve it in this new system and offense, so hopefully this will make it a little easier for myself and kind of get back to what I’m used to, and just go out there and throw the ball around and having fun.”
Henne knows his job as the Dolphins’ starting quarterback is tenuous. General manager Jeff Ireland said he will look at all options, in the draft and free agency, to help improve the team’s quarterback situation. Chad Pennington and Tyler Thigpen may both not return, so the Dolphins could be in the market for two quarterbacks this offseason.
“Definitely there’s going to be competition. No matter what, they’re going to bring some guy in, a veteran or a rookie,” Henne said. “I’m just here to compete, do the best I can and we’ll see what happens once we get into camps.”