Miami Dolphins rookie running back Daniel Thomas seems to have lost head coach Tony Sparano’s confidence.
Veteran Reggie Bush was the only back in a one-man backfield for most of the first half, with Thomas not getting a single carry until the second.
When he finally did enter he showed more of a knack as a receiver than a runner, turning his one catch into a 19-yard gain. His longest run was nine yards and he averaged only 2.3 yards per carry.
Sparano got in Thomas’ face after he ran tentatively near the goal line in the Dolphins’ 20-10 win over Carolina last week, and there was a sense Saturday that he has lost trust in his ability to earn the hard yards between the tackles.
Of course, with the Dolphins’ talents at receiver and the much-discussed desire to attack defenses, there have been clear signs Miami might be intent on putting the ball in the air more this year. Whether that’s by design or out of necessity remains undetermined.
Bush is not a true every-down back, but his fantasy value is rising as the Dolphins seem to believe in him more than they do Thomas. Thomas once had the look of a mid-round sleeper. It's getting harder to target him there.