Mark is doing a good job working with the wide receivers to get back on the same page, as Tony Sparano noted:
He has done a really good job all week. When you have new parts, it’s no different than in training camp. I would urge you to go look at the last time that we’ve really had No.84 (Stephen Hill), No.81 (Dustin Keller), No.11 (Jeremy Kerley) and No.10 (Santonio Holmes) on the field at the same time. Honestly, when you’re looking at those things, the good news is a Chaz Schilens has gotten all the plays (and) Jeff Cumberland has gotten a lot of work. It’s not new to them and Mark is a little bit more familiar with them, but he has done a really nice job of being more active in (saying), “Hey, you need to be here, this needs to look more like this.” I think that’s important. Chad Pennington used to do a tremendous job with that. There are times in practice where the practice would be a lot longer because I’d have to wait for Chad because he’d be out there at the hash mark someplace coaching a receiver. That’s a good thing because you want to know that they’re where you need them to be. That’s good constructive criticism and good communication between receivers, quarterbacks, running backs, tight ends and anybody involved that way. He’s done a really good job of that this week. I’m encouraged. He’s done an excellent job of it the last couple of weeks.
Sometimes, a player’s actions speak ounder than their words with regards to how they lead. Mark is working hard to get this right. Is it possible that he won’t get the chance to fix it by the end of the year? Possible, but Mark is working his rear end off, that’s for sure.
It is a concern with any QB that they don’t do too much, which a quarterback can do at times. Here’s Sparano’s take on it:
Not mentioning anything about pressing or any of those issues, this goes back to first meetings in Cortland and those things. In general, with any of the quarterbacks, I don’t think you want to (put) too much on them like that and I don’t think you have to (put) too much on them like that. Those guys have a hard enough job when they’re out there, doing what they do in the course of a football game. It’s interesting, I did an exercise in Cortland one time, and I asked a couple of players to get up in front of the room and said, “You’re the quarterback.” You stand there now and I threw a play out, boom I spit the play out and said now you have to say it to the offense. You have to get it out. You have to get to the line of scrimmage. You have to make a mike identification. You have to read the coverage. You have to do all that. (There was) total silence. I don’t think there’s too many of them signing up for that.
Hopefully Mark can make Tony’s faith come true, and soon.