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Joe Philbin: Lamar Miller must break more tackles

The Miami Dolphins aren't throwing in the towel on Lamar Miller's career now that Knowshon Moreno has taken his talents to South Beach.

Miller will be given the opportunity to compete for the starting job, but coach Joe Philbin wants to see more explosive runs from him this season.


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"We've got to break more tackles. I may have been guilty of overcoaching, harping on the ball security issue," Philbin said of Miller, via The Miami Herald. "He really did a good job of that. At some point, running backs need to break tackles.

"It's not that he didn't break any. But he's got to break some more. There is room that we could potentially utilize him more (as a pass receiver). He has good natural hands, good speed."

This is no small hurdle for Miller to clear.

Lack of power was the No. 1 concern when we broke down Miller's strengths and weaknesses during last offseason's Making the Leap series.

Grading Miller for the 2012 NFL Draft, NFL Media analyst Mike Mayock cautioned that the University of Miami star "doesn't show up" on third down, in short-yardage or at the goal line. Two years later, those same areas are holding Miller back.

Outside of Peyton Manning's offense, Moreno will no longer have the luxury of facing six defenders or fewer in the box. The Dolphins need Miller to gain power and master the fundamentals of the position so they can take advantage of his big-play ability in a tandem attack.

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