On the mend: Three in­jured WRs par­tic­i­pate in prac­tice

Orlando Sentinel - - SPORTS - By Omar Kelly


The Mi­ami Dol­phins’ in­jury-dec­i­mated re­ceiver unit could po­ten­tially have all three starters avail­able for Sun­day’s road game against the New York Giants.

DeVante Parker and Al­bert Wil­son, who suf­fered con­cus­sions in Sun­day’s 22-21 loss to the New York Jets, prac­ticed for the sec­ond straight ses­sion on Thurs­day.

“They are still in [con­cus­sion] pro­to­col,” coach Brian Flores said. “They will be in pro­to­col till the end of the week. Both guys are work­ing to get bet­ter. But that’s out of my hands. It’s a med­i­cal de­ci­sion.”

Allen Hurns, who is bat­tling knee and an­kle in­juries that kept him from prac­tic­ing on Wed­nes­day, re­turned to prac­tice on Thurs­day and par­tic­i­pated with­out lim­i­ta­tions.

Hurns, the Dol­phins’ most ex­pe­ri­enced re­ceiver, has 29 re­cep­tions for 366 yards and two touch­downs.

“He’s dinged up. He’s played through some in­juries last week and toughed through it. It was an im­pres­sive per­for­mance by him,” Flores said. “He’s a tough kid. Wants to play. If he can be out there, he’ll be out there.”

Parker and Wil­son must be cleared by the NFL in­de­pen­dent med­i­cal ex­am­in­ers be­cause they are in the NFL’s con­cus­sion pro­to­col, which re­quires they pass a three-tier base­line test that mon­i­tors the ef­fects of their con­cus­sion symp­toms.

If any of the three re­ceivers can’t play, the Dol­phins would be forced to lean on Isa­iah Ford, a for­mer prac­tice-squad player who had a ca­reer-best six catches for 92 yards, and new­com­ers Mack Hollins and Trevor Davis, who were both claimed off waivers last week.

It’s also pos­si­ble the Dol­phins might be forced to call up a re­ceiver from the prac­tice squad — T.J. Rah­ming, Andy Jones or Terry Wright.

Parker, who is hav­ing the best sea­son of his ca­reer, has the most in­cen­tive to play on Sun­day be­cause he’s 118 yards away from be­com­ing the 10th Dol­phins re­ceiver to pro­duce 1,000 or more re­ceiv­ing yards in a sea­son.

Wil­son, who bat­tled back from a sea­son-end­ing hip in­jury he suf­fered last Oc­to­ber, has caught 26 passes for 154 yards and one touch­down.

Wil­son needs a strong fin­ish to the sea­son be­cause his fu­ture with the Dol­phins is in jeop­ardy due to the $9.5 mil­lion he’s slated to earn in 2020. Re­leas­ing Wil­son clears the same amount in cap space, but it’s also a pos­si­bil­ity Mi­ami tries to re­struc­ture his deal.

“It’s tough. You have to plan for the worst in that sit­u­a­tion,” Flores added. “They may or may not come out of pro­to­col so the next set of re­ceivers has to be ready to play.”

Hollins, who started three games for the Philadel­phia Ea­gles ear­lier this sea­son be­fore be­ing re­leased, played last week but didn’t catch the one pass thrown his way.

Davis started four of the nine games he played for the Raiders ear­lier this sea­son. He’s caught 16 passes for 2,065 yards and has scored two touch­downs dur­ing his four NFL sea­sons.

In­jury up­date: De­fen­sive tackle Gerald Wil­lis sat out his sec­ond straight prac­tice be­cause of a hip in­jury.

■ Cor­ner­back Nik Need­ham (groin) had his prac­tice par­tic­i­pa­tion lim­ited for a sec­ond straight day.

■ Quar­ter­back Ryan Fitz­patrick prac­ticed with­out lim­i­ta­tions for the sec­ond straight day de­spite the sore right shoul­der he’s nurs­ing.

■ Full­back Chan­dler Cox has been lim­ited for the past two prac­tices be­cause of a shoul­der in­jury he suf­fered against the Jets.

■ Tail­back Patrick Laird (hip), line­backer Jerome Baker (chest/jaw) prac­ticed with­out lim­i­ta­tions de­spite their in­juries.

■ Dol­phins signed cor­ner­back Rashad Causey, an un­drafted rookie from Cen­tral Florida, to the prac­tice squad.

Causey, who played at St. Thomas Aquinas, recorded 48 tack­les, four tack­les for loss, two sacks, seven passes de­fensed and three forced fum­bles as a se­nior for the Knights.


Al­bert Wil­son, left, and DeVante Parker wear red jer­seys while in con­cus­sion pro­to­col dur­ing prac­tice Thurs­day in Davie.

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