The Miami Dolphins are the belle of the NFL ball heading into Week 2. National pundits, NFL fans, and even players around the league were in awe of Dolphins QB Tua Tagovailoa’s impeccable performance against the Los Angeles Chargers in Week 1.
Tua’s 466 passing yards, three touchdowns, and video game-esque connection with Tyreek Hill showed just how dangerous Miami’s offense can be when it’s operating at full capacity.
Well … near-full capacity. Stalwart left tackle Terron Armstead wasn’t able to suit up in Week 1, leaving Miami with backup OT Kendall Lamm manning Tua’s left side.
If the injury report and head coach Mike McDaniel are any indication (and they are), Armstead indeed has a shot to make his debut in Week 2.
Terron Armstead and Jaelan Phillips Questionable Heading Into Sunday Night Football
Armstead, who was unable to play Week 1 due to a knee issue, is listed as questionable ahead of Miami’s Sunday Night Football showdown with the Patriots. Like last week, he’s officially listed on the team’s injury report with back, ankle, and knee injuries. Unlike last week, the four-time Pro Bowler practiced all week — though in a limited fashion.
Armstead managed to ditch his red no-contact jersey, signaling that he’s making steady progress as he works his way back to the field.
“[Armstead will] practice today,” McDaniel told reporters on Friday. “Just trying to do my best to show as much restraint as possible and allow the process to unfold. I know he’s eager, and we’ll see how the next 48 hours (unfold).
“We’ll probably circle back tomorrow and take a look at everything. But he’s been doing well.”
New England’s defense, the pass rush included, isn’t one to be ignored, as shown by the team’s stifling of the 2022 NFC Champion Philadelphia Eagles offense in the season opener. Patriots pass rusher Matthew Judon, a Pro Bowl edge rusher in each of the last four seasons, will be lining up opposite Miami’s OL, so protection will be of paramount importance come Sunday night.
Lamm and the rest of Miami’s offensive line acquitted themselves well against Joey Bosa, Khalil Mack, and the rest of L.A.’s defense without Armstead last week. Tua wasn’t sacked, and while the offensive line allowed 13 pressures, Tua thrived in those moments, completing 7 of 13 passes for 120 yards while under duress.
The team can’t rely on Tua to make magic happen under pressure every week, though, so getting Armstead back would go a long way toward ensuring Miami’s blistering offense stays in peak form as the early portion of the season rolls on.
Should Armstead need another week before returning to action, Lamm will be in line to start once again at left tackle. The 31-year-old veteran was a pleasant surprise for Dolphins fans last Sunday, and he ranked in the top 12 in ESPN’s pass block win rate.
Alongside Armstead on the injury report is budding pass rusher Jaelan Phillips (back), who many had tagged as a breakout candidate heading into his third season. Phillips compiled 15.5 sacks over his first two years in the league, and his top-tier athleticism and steady pressure rates in 2022 led many to believe he could put up gaudy sack numbers in his third campaign.
Phillips, who’s listed as questionable, didn’t appear on the injury report until Friday, indicating that his back issue popped up sometime following Thursday’s practice.
Thankfully for Miami’s offense, running back Raheem Mostert, who was held out entirely from Wednesday’s session, put in a second full practice on Friday and is without a game-day injury designation, indicating that he’s all systems go for Week 2.
“There was nothing to worry about,” Mostert said on Thursday. “They just wanted to give me a vet day. They feel like with my age, with how many years I’ve played, how much ball I’ve been around, and how much I’ve seen throughout the years, they were trying to look out for me.”
The speedster explained that he wanted to practice but that he was held out by the team’s coaches and training staff. “I was telling them the day before, I was like, ‘Hey, look, I’ll be good. Let’s go. I don’t need a day off.’ They were like, ‘We’re going to do it anyway.’ Yeah, there’s nothing to worry about. My knee is good.”
For the Patriots, four offensive linemen are listed as questionable. OT Trent Brown (concussion) and G Sidy Sow (concussion) have been unable to practice all week, while G Mike Onwenu and G Cole Strange (knee) were limited participants.
Starting CB Jonathan Jones (ankle) and former Dolphins wideout DeVante Parker (knee) are also questionable. Parker was unable to play last week due to a knee injury, while Jones’ ankle issue flared up midweek, forcing him to sit out of Friday’s practice.
Miami Dolphins at New England Patriots Week 2 Injury Report
- OT Terron Armstead (back/ankle/knee)
- DB Elijah Campbell (knee)
- TE Julian Hill (ankle)
- LB Jaelan Phillips (back)
New England Patriots
- OT Trent Brown (concussion)
- G Sidy Sow (concussion)
- G Cole Strange (knee)
- G Mike Onwenu (ankle)
- WR DeVante Parker (knee)
- DB Jonathan Jones (ankle)