A positive mindset has impressed Vaughn Martin’s coaches throughout his football journey, from the University of Western Ontario to the Miami Dolphins.
“He has a lot of physical tools and athleticism, but I like his attitude, I like the way he’s approached his job when he comes into the building at this early stage of the game,” Dolphins Head Coach Joe Philbin told Dolphins Digest Editor Alain Poupart in a recent feature.
Martin, who starred as a defensive tackle at the University of Western Ontario, signed with the Dolphins as an unrestricted free agent following four seasons with the Chargers. San Diego drafted Martin in the fourth round of the 2009 draft, making the Jamaican-born Torontonian one of the highest drafted CIS players ever.
“When I first came in, I didn’t even know how much I didn’t know,” Martin, who played hockey in Canada before taking up football and eventually hanging up his ice skates, told Poupart. “That curve was exponential. It was every single day, every week, whatever. I was fortunate, I worked hard enough, I started the last two years, but I still feel like I have a way to go.”
According to Poupart the Dolphins had competition when it came to signing Martin in the offseason. In addition to the Dolphins and Chargers, the Seahawks also were interested. Martin actually got off a plane headed for Seattle to sign with Miami.
“There’s 32 franchises; every one has their own personality,” Martin told Poupart. “ But when I got here, I was familiar with some of the guys here. I trained with Mike Pouncey up in Boca a few weeks before I was even contacted by the Dolphins. And just after coming here and meeting with the coaches, the strength coaches, the program, just walking around the building … first of all, you want to win. This game is too hard to not want to win. I really felt that’s where they were going. Hard-working team. It basically suited my personality.
“And as a bonus, I have family down here in South Florida. It’s a nice play to be. So it was a combination of things. It was the perfect storm. And I really feel … yeah, I’m really happy to be here.”
Martin’s positive outlook has impressed his coaches.
“He’s a guy that comes into the building with a positive attitude. It looks like he likes to play the game. To us, those are underrated qualities sometimes, believe it or not. He has a lot of physical tools and athleticism, but I like his attitude, I like the way he’s approached his job when he comes into the building at this early stage of the game,” Philbin told Poupart.
Poupart’s complete feature is available here http://www.miamidolphins.com/news/article-1/Martin-Took-The-Long-Road-To-The-NFL/3194f068-45eb-4e02-ad82-f60968caa251