Thehas been interesting this offseason, to say the least.
There have been endless trade rumors involving big-name backs including Dalvin Cook, Josh Jacobs and Jonathan Taylor joining the Dolphins. A vital piece to their backfield, Jeff Wilson Jr. has been, meaning he will miss at least the first four weeks of the regular season. Their rookie, De’Von Achane, had been dealing with a shoulder injury for much of camp and is only now returning to practice.
While the running back room has dealt with constant rumors and injuries, there’s been one player able to remain composed and focused on the upcoming season, and he’s earned the praise of head coach Mike McDaniel.
“Outstanding focus,” McDaniel said, speaking about Mostert (via NFL media). “I couldn’t highlight a guy in a better light. He’s someone that’s directly heard a ton of noise for months and months and months. It’s almost like every day that it’s loud, you see extra focus, and that epitomizes the journey of an NFL player.”
Mostert, who turned 31 in April, had a strong year in Miami last season, leading the team in rushing with 891 yards. He tied with Wilson for most rushing touchdowns with three and had a career-high receptions (31) and receiving yards (202), while adding a career-high two receiving touchdowns.
After playing in 16 games last season, and starting 14, Mostert could have been put off by talks of Miami bringing in a veteran running back. McDaniel said that was far from the case, and how Mostert handles himself is why they’ve established a strong relationship over the years.
“Look, we’re all earning our day to day and not entitled to anything, and he shows exactly that with how he carries himself,” McDaniel said. “I’m so proud of him as a professional. Just another reason why I have such a strong human connection with that player.”
McDaniel and Mostert first joined forces in San Francisco, when the former was the 49ers’ run-game coordinator. The two reunited in Miami when both joined the team in 2022 — Mostert’s second stint with the Fins.
McDaniel touched on the off-the-field elements of the game and how players will often find themselves in a tough situation. He said everyone will have to drown out the noise at some point in their career, and how a player handles that and works through it is crucial.
“We’re in a very fortunate business to be able to do the things we do on the stage we do and be compensated the way we are,” McDaniel said. “However, it comes at a cost, and that’s a lot of people having opinions that directly or indirectly relate to you, and you can’t control that at all. I think the sooner that you open your eyes to that, the better.”
The other running backs in the conversation may generate more hype or attention, but McDaniel said Mostert has not slowed down or changed his work ethic.
“So, to have a guy like Raheem, who I’ve had such a cool journey with, and to watch him work, is the exact thing that you have to do in this business at some point in time.”
The Dolphins begin their season on Sept. 10 against the Los Angeles Chargers where Mostert is set to be their RB1.
This content was originally published here.