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Eleven takeaways from Thursday's minicamps

As teams league-wide break for summer, Mike Wallace must be feeling pretty good about himself.

Making the Leap



Around The League will profile the top 25 players we see Making the Leap in 2014 -- players like running back Khiry Robinson of the New Orleans Saints.

» No. 25: Josh McCown
» No. 24: Xavier Rhodes
» No. 23: Christine Michael
» No. 22: Ziggy Ansah
» No. 21: Justin Hunter
» No. 20: Markus Wheaton
» No. 19: Khiry Robinson
» No. 18: Gus Bradley, David Caldwell
» No. 17: Marvin Jones
» No. 16: Desmond Trufant
» No. 15: Zach Ertz
» No. 14: DeAndre Hopkins
» No. 13: Everson Griffen
» No. 12: Jordan Reed
» No. 11: Datone Jones, Mike Daniels
» No. 10: Jabaal Sheard
» No. 9: Ladarius Green
» No. 8: Toby Gerhart
» No. 7: Montee Ball
» No. 6: Johnathan Cyprien
» No. 5: Jamie Collins
» No. 4: Le'Veon Bell
» No. 3: Andre Ellington
» No. 2: Kenny Vaccaro
» No. 1: Cordarrelle Patterson

After all, we struggle to find a player bathing in more praise these days than the Dolphins wide receiver.

Coach Joe Philbin capped Thursday's final minicamp session by announcing that Miami's deep threat enjoyed a "really good offseason program" under the direction of new play-caller Bill Lazor. Wallace himself has proclaimed that "nobody can ever key on me" in the team's new offense.

Should we buy into the swarm of puff pieces tabbing Wallace for a monster campaign?

On the plus side, the 'Fins wisely replaced Mike Sherman's Tecmo Bowl-level playbook with an Eagles-flavored attack set for launch behind a revamped O-line. After Wallace played almost 90 percent of his snaps on the right side last season, observers have seen him lining up all over the field.

"To me," Lazor told Around The League, "he's going to be a very exciting piece of this offense."

Wallace's biggest obstacle might ultimately be ... Wallace. It was just last month when teammates whispered about the wideout as a player coaches weren't a fan of. The subject of trade rumors in March, Wallace is under pressure to show better chemistry with quarterback Ryan Tannehill -- and team brass.

"I think he's growing, I think has an unbelievable attitude," Lazor said. "He sat in my office and talked about the things that he thought he could do to grow and we're working on those things every day."

Here's the rest of the news from around the league during Thursday's mandatory minicamps:

2. After Mike Pettine claimed his old mentor, Rex Ryan, handed out Jets defensive playbooks "like candy" -- with one copy even winding up in Bill Belichick's hands -- Gang Green's longtime coach shot down the story and said of Cleveland's new leader: "I don't understand what he's trying to gain by it ... Everyone needs to talk to Mike Pettine 'cause he's got all the answers."

Repeatedly calling Pettine's account "ridiculous," Rex acknowledged relations with his former Xs-and-Os soul mate rests "in a bad spot now. ... Like, 'Really dude?'"

3. Cam Newton is a month ahead of schedule in his rehab from March ankle surgery. How do we know? Because Ace Boogie participated in 7-on-7 drills Thursday in Carolina's final minicamp jaunt. The Panthers passer completed 8 of 15 throws, picking up steam as the session went on. "Not 100 percent yet," said Cam. "But any progress is good progress."

4. It hasn't been an easy month for the Texans. Bill O'Brien said Jadeveon Clowney remains on track for the start of training camp following sports hernia surgery, but the No. 1 overall pick refused to confirm his coach's timeline. 

5. Terrible news for Johnathan Franklin. The second-year Packers running back tweeted Thursday that he's forced to move on from football due to a neck injury. "I understand God knows what he is doing (and) for now he has another platform for me to step upon," wrote the former UCLA star who harbors desires to become the mayor of Los Angeles. Interesting fellow. We wish him well.

6. Coming off Big Blue's horrific season in 2013, coach Tom Coughlin believes Ben McAdoo's new offense will turn Bad Eli into Championship-Level Eli.

7. Will Chris Wesseling eat his softball pants? My fellow Around The League scribe vows to swallow yards of fabric if Brian Hoyer starts Week 1 over Browns rookie quarterback Johnny Manziel. Asked by The MMQB about JFF's chances to start, Pettine said: "It could happen, but in my ideal world, it's not opening day."

8. Gregg Rosenthal wonders if Knowshon Moreno is even part of Miami's roster come the opener.

9. Stepping off his riding mower in the Mississippian wilderness, a beefed-up Brett Favre is throwing his weight around for a fellow named Thad.

10. Speaking of Far-vra, his recent chat with Adrian Peterson has the Vikings runner rethinking how long he'll play in the NFL, saying Thursday: "40 sounds good."

11. Your humble author believes the Bills are playoff-bound if EJ Manuel can flip the switch. Reports out of Buffalo concern us.

In the latest edition of the "Around The League Podcast," the guys make the case that multiple teams have closed the gap on the Seahawks and 49ers in the NFC.

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