On the first 11-on-11 play the Dolphins ran in Friday's first practice of training camp, quarterback Ryan Tannehill fumbled the snap and dropped the ball.
But the rough opening-day showing from the fancy new offense hasn't stopped the Dolphins, a team that hasn't made the playoffs since 2008, from dreaming big.
"We want to play deep into January and February," Tannehill said. "That's our goal at this point, is to go out, win the division and play in the playoffs.
"It's a big season ahead of us and I think anything less than that is not up to our standards."
Optimism is high among the Dolphins, who finished 8-8 last season and spent much of the season embroiled in controversy. And there was reason to be optimistic. Tannehill hit wide receiver Mike Wallace on a beautifully-thrown deep pass Friday. The deep ball, of course, was a source of frustration last season.
There was another reason for optimism.
The defense, which was eighth in the NFL in points per game last season (20.9), had a good showing Friday. They didn't seem a bit confused by the pre-snap motion of the newly-installed offense.
So although the Dolphins placed Pro Bowl center Mike Pouncey (hip) and running back Knowshon Moreno (knee) on the physically unable to perform (PUP) list Friday, and even though the revamped offensive line turned in a sketchy performance during practice, the Dolphins are talking playoffs.
"That's our only expectations, to make it to the playoffs," Pouncey said. "We fell short last year and I know that's in the back of a lot of these guys' heads."
Dolphins third-year coach Joe Philbin, never one to make a brash statement, stopped just short of echoing Tannehill and Pouncey.
"If you look [at] the history since we've been here we were 7-9, we were 8-8," Philbin said. "It's time for us to take another step forward as a football team."
Dolphins owner Steve Ross has seen his team utilize the third and eighth overall picks in the draft in the last three years as well as sign the top two free agents on the market — Wallace and left tackle Branden Albert. So, Ross also has playoff hopes.
"I think if you don't have those expectations you shouldn't be in the game," he said.
And Ross seems genuinely excited about wide receiver Jarvis Landry, the second-round pick from LSU.
"I think Jarvis Landry is somebody I think everybody is really excited about, speaking to the coaches," Ross said. "I think he's really going to be somebody that's going to surprise a lot of people and really bring some excitement to this team."
Ross, whose Sun Life Stadium renovations are underway, skirted away from questions about Philbin retaining his job if the Dolphins fail to make the postseason.
"I'm not going to say here he has to because I can understand what the headlines are," Ross said.
"I like Joe Philbin very much. I believe the ingredients of being a winning organization is having consistency. I'm expecting Joe Philbin to be here a long time. Every year, you want to see improvement."
It would seem the Dolphins have improved in one aspect.
"We've been emphasizing respect to one another, communication," Philbin said.
"I thought our communication as a football team, in the offseason, again, was the best it's ever been. ... I've had many, many more one-on-one meetings with the players in the offseason. I think they have a better understanding of where I'm coming from and certainly I've reached out to them and wanted to get feedback from them. We're working at it together."
Despite Friday's bumpy offensive debut, they're excited about the future.
"It's a work in progress, it's practice number one," Philbin said of the new offense.
"As you could see there is a lot of work to be done, but I thought it was a good start to training camp."Copyright © 2015, The Baltimore Sun