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Joe Philbin gives Miami Dolphins players Thursdays off

The Miami Dolphins decided to swim against the NFL tide this season when coach Joe Philbin switched the players' off day from Tuesday to Thursday.

"We're giving it a whirl," Philbin said, per the South Florida Sun Sentinel.

The norm in the NFL is to give players Tuesday off from practice to let their bodies rest after Sunday's game. That day off also gives coaches the opportunity to study film and prep for upcoming practices and that week's game.

"It's an adjustment; I feel great right now," guard Richie Incognito said of the switch. "Definitely, later on in the season, coming in on Tuesday and Wednesday is going to be a grind."

Philbin said his staff "stumbled" onto the change following the Dolphins' Thursday night game before Thanksgiving last season. The break gave Philbin an opportunity to give his players the holiday off. He said players told him they felt more fresh for the next game.

"I talked to some people in the offseason in regard to performance, the timing of things," Philbin said. "It's all about preparing your team and giving them the best chance to perform to their potential on Sunday."

However, not everyone is buying that an off day later in the week is the best, especially for players who were battling injuries.

"It doesn't make any sense to me," former New York Giants coach Jim Fassel told The Palm Beach Post. "Players aren't ready to go back 48 hours after the game."

Philbin sounded confident that his staff would be able to properly prepare for practices and games. If the new schedule does in fact make players more fresh for games later in the season, it might be the start of a new trend.

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