Fire at Tyreek Hill’s home, Jerome Baker’s injuries documented in latest ‘Hard Knocks’ episode tracking Dolphins season
Team reaction to Miami Dolphins wide receiver Tyreek Hill’s fire at his home, a deep look at the injuries linebacker Jerome Baker is dealing with and the storytelling of coach Mike McDaniel’s past bout with alcoholism were covered in Tuesday night’s eighth episode of HBO reality series “Hard Knocks” following the team in-season.
Local news coverage of Hill’s house on fire, along with him standing outside, was used on the show, while teammates inside Dolphins facilities were shown expressing concern with one another.
Quarterback Tua Tagovailoa was saying he was trying to call and text Hill, to no avail. Fullback Alec Ingold was shown in a media interview saying it’s important teammates are present for Hill with whatever he needs.
Hill had to leave Miami’s Wednesday practice last week to attend to the accidental fire at his home. He was absent from Thursday drills and has been living away from home in the aftermath.
McDaniel had a candid talk with his team during the week about the eight-year anniversary of going sober.
The episode took a glance at his journey through being fired from his first paid coaching job with the Houston Texans, why he keeps the number 865 by his desk for the number of days he was out of the NFL and the moment McDaniel realized he had to stop drinking daily in order to achieve his career aspirations.
It was all in a week where the Dolphins were taking on the rival Buffalo Bills for the AFC East crown.
The episode went inside linebacker Baker’s four-week recovery from an MCL injury in his left knee suffered Dec. 3 to return for the regular-season finale, even showing some of his pool workouts inside team facilities.
Returning for what was essentially a divisional title game, Baker broke down the team’s practice huddle one day the past week passionately relaying his desire to knock off Buffalo, a divisional foe that has had Miami’s number in recent history.
In the game, Baker hurt his right wrist while tackling Bills tight end Dalton Kincaid in the second half, initially clutching at it. He later aggravated the injury trying to take down quarterback Josh Allen on his key third-and-13 scramble for a first down.
The real conversations between Baker, his mother and agent Drew Rosenhaus as word spread that he dislocated the wrist and needed surgery, effectively ending his season, were documented.
The general message inside the Dolphins locker room after the crushing loss was that the team won’t break from it going into the playoffs.
The moment it was revealed to five Dolphins offensive players — Tagovailoa, Hill, running back Raheem Mostert, left tackle Terron Armstead and Ingold — that they made the Pro Bowl last week was shown. General manager Chris Grier was in the room with McDaniel and the players. Cornerback Jalen Ramsey was also a Pro Bowl selection for Miami.
Fellow cornerback Xavien Howard was seen in a cast on his injured left foot at team facilities.
The latest edition of “Hard Knocks” told Dolphins head of security Drew Brooks’ story. Brooks lost his son to Glioblastoma, a common form of brain cancer. Brooks has also had to recover from a torn triceps this season, which he hurt while on the sideline of Miami’s regular-season meeting against the Kansas City Chiefs in Germany when quarterback Patrick Mahomes rumbled into him.
The episode began with coach Mike McDaniel’s speech to the team as it started the new year. The essence of it, coming off the Dec. 31 56-19 loss to the Baltimore Ravens, was to tear the bandage off and make a point that difficult things happen on the way to accomplishing anything special.