This offseason, D.J. Fluker signed with the Miami Dolphins to add depth and compete for one of the team’s open spots on the offensive line. Unfortunately, it doesn’t seem like we’ll see the nine-year vet suit up for the team in the immediate future, as we found out earlier today he would miss time due to injury.
According to Barry Jackson of the Miami Herald, Fluker will remain out until ‘some point in August.’
Per team source, an injury issue has surfaced with Dolphins offensive lineman DJ Fluker. He's expected back to practice at some point in August.— Barry Jackson (@flasportsbuzz) July 29, 2021
You can translate that however you want. But to me, why even bring this up if ‘some point in August’ is in three days—or one week after the calendar shifts. No. This sounds like Fluker will miss time until at least the middle of August, but no one truly knows. It’s extremely vague.
Nevertheless, losing Fluker isn’t ideal. The team signed him to add depth and experience to the offensive line, though he wasn’t necessarily a lock to make the 53-man roster. So now, the Dolphins will have to rely on younger, more inexperienced players to step up and seize this opportunity.
Robert Hunt already had the inside track at right guard (IMO). And I don’t believe the Dolphins intended to sign Fluker to a one-year deal to protect Tua Tagovailoa’s blindside, though he has some experience at right tackle. (This will be Liam Eichenberg’s job to lose as we discussed on a recent episode of Phinsider Radio) So maybe Fluker’s absence directly impacts guys like Larnel Coleman, Adam Pankey, and Jermaine Eluemunor. Some of the guys who are fighting for depth positions and roster spots. Those are the players that now have the opportunity to rise to the occasion.
There might not be an exact timetable for Fluker’s return. But let’s hope he’s back on the field sooner than later, or the 30-year-old could find himself searching for his third team since leaving the Seattle Seahawks back in 2019.
What are your thoughts on D.J. Fluker missing time? Do you think he has a chance to make the 53-man roster? Which player on the roster do you think his absence benefits most? Let us know in the comments section below!