The Miami Dolphins head to Nevada this weekend for a Saturday night primetime meeting with the Las Vegas Raiders. The game is a must-win contest for Miami, who is looking to remain in position to make the postseason for the first time since 2016, giving them the potential for their first playoff win since 2000. The Dolphins head into the game in a fairly healthy manner, especially considering the injury struggles the team had last week.
The Dolphins activated running back Myles Gaskin earlier in the week, giving them back their full complement of running backs.
The only player who has been ruled out of the game for Miami is guard Solomon Kindley, who is dealing with a knee and foot issue. Miami listed guard Ereck Flowers (ankle), tight end Mike Gesicki (shoulder), wide receiver Jakeem Grant (shoulder), defensive end Shaq Lawson (shoulder), and wide receiver DeVante Parker (hamstring) as questionable for the game. With Parker, Grant, Gesicki, Gaskin, and Preston Williams (currently on injured reserve with a foot injury) all missing last week, the team played without their top-five players in terms of receptions on the year. The return of some, most, or all of them (other than Williams who has not been activated from IR yet), will be a huge boost for the offense.
Also listed on the injury report, but cleared for the game, are linebacker Jerome Baker (knee), safety Clayton Fejedelem (non-injury/thumb), safety Kavon Frazier (shoulder), cornerback Xavien Howard (shoulder), safety Bobby McCain (ankle), and linebacker Kyle Van Noy (hip).
On the Raiders’ side of the injury report, defensive end Clelin Ferrell was ruled out of the game. Ferrell has started 11 games this year for Las Vegas, recording 27 tackles, two sacks, three passes defended, and two forced fumbles.
The Raiders listed defensive tackle Maurice Hurst as questionable with a calf injury. The rest of the injury report, including linebacker Nicholas Morrow (concussion/neck), center Rodney Hudson (knee/back), guard Gabe Jackson (knee), tackle Sam Young (knee), safety Johnathan Abram (concussion/knee), cornerback Damon Arnette (concussion/neck), kicker Daniel Carlson (left ankle), quarterback Derek Carr (groin), defensive tackle Johnathan Hankins (non-injury), fullback Alec Ingold (knee), running back Josh Jacobs (knee), cornerback Isaiah Johnson (back), linebacker Raekwon McMillan (elbow), wide receiver Hunter Renfrow (concussion), running back Jalen Richard (chest), and defensive end Carl Nassib (non-injury) on the report, but appear available for the game. Carr’s availability comes as a surprise as the groin injury appear severe enough that Marcus Mariota would have to start.
Since the injury report was released, Morrow was added to the reserve/COVID-19 list, joining linebacker Nick Kwiatkoski. McMillan, the former second-round draft choice of the Dolphins in 2017, could see extended playing time.
As Bill Williamson from SB Nation’s Raiders site Silver and Black Pride wrote on Thursday, “Las Vegas Raiders coach Jon Gruden said Friday he is ‘optimistic’ quarterback Derek Carr will be ready to play Saturday at home against the Miami Dolphins. Gruden said he ‘doesn’t want to let the cat out of the bag,’ though.” Mariota could still play with Carr as the backup if needed, but Carr seems to be attempting to be ready for the game.
Miami and Las Vegas kickoff at 8:15pm ET on Saturday.