MIAMI GARDENS, Fla. — The Miami Dolphins entered Friday’s game against the New York Jets without their top two guards. They left it without their top two tackles.
Austin Jackson was ejected for his role in a fracas, and Terron Armstead suffered a quadriceps injury that — while not season-ending — could keep him out of additional action.
That left the Dolphins with the following offensive line (from left to right) for essentially the entire fourth quarter: Kendall Lamm, Lester Cotton, Connor Williams, Liam Eichenberg, and Kion Smith.
And yet, the Dolphins rushed for 62 yards on six carries — not including a kneel-down — in their final two drives to close out the Jets.
Will Miami Dolphins’ Terron Armstead Play vs. Commanders?
The good news for the Dolphins? Jackson will be back for Week 13, and Rob Hunt should be back in the starting lineup after dealing with a hamstring injury the last couple of weeks.
As for Armstead?
That remains a question mark, although McDaniel suggested Monday that Armstead could have conceivably gutted it out Friday if needed.
“It would have been interesting if it would have been a one-score game, what I would have seen from him because we’re trying to do our due diligence,” McDaniel said. “He has had his fill of watching football. So he’s going to be pressing me hard to play this week, I know. For me, I see it as week-to-week injury, so we’re going to have to find a middle ground.
“But again, these are healthy things that I would much rather prefer, as opposed to trying to convince someone that they are capable of playing,” he added. “We’ll see how that progresses. But as you guys have seen, I wasn’t just BS’ing when I was saying that I was very happy with the depth and how many NFL linemen we have on our football team.
“I think we’ve shown that we’ve been able to operate at a high level with all sorts of various alignments, and that’s to the credit of a lot of players and coaches and the personnel department on top of that. It could shake out a lot of different ways, but that’s what the fun of December is, right?”
Armstead has appeared in just five of the Dolphins’ 11 games this year, and his 36.1% usage rate ranks eighth among Dolphins linemen.
The Dolphins have been able to survive his injuries because they’ve had Lamm, Armstead’s backup, playing at a high level. But he’s dealing with an injury of his own (back) that cropped up Friday morning.
“Especially after the shape he was in at the beginning of the day, you want to talk about an absolute warrior that has become such a big fixture in our locker room and is so important to us winning and losing football games,” McDaniel said.
“He proved it to even be able to be of strong service to us, in his mind, to just be able to go and orchestrate his job. That’s just a real — it speaks to him and who he is and how important this thing is to him.”
I definitely wouldn’t put it past him to be able to play this week; however, there’s some obstacles we have to get through. That’s kind of the residuals of having that short game, having that type of issue. That’ll clear back up throughout the week, but I’m very optimistic because of who he is.”
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