The Miami Dolphins and New England Patriots are into their final preparations for their 2021 NFL kickoff game, facing each other in Week 1 for the second straight year. The two AFC East rivals will also finish the season facing each other, meaning these will be two completely different teams when they meet in Week 18. Part of those differences will be injuries that have impacted both rosters throughout the season.
Heading into Sunday’s Week 1 contest, both teams are fairly healthy - though that does not mean everyone will play. The Dolphins are facing not having starting left tackle Austin Jackson and second-team tight end Adam Shaheen if they cannot clear medical protocols and be activated off the reserve/COVID-19 list by Saturday afternoon.
The Patriots will be without former Dolphins wide receiver Malcolm Perry, who injured his foot this week and has been ruled out of the game. His injury appears to have happened either sometime Thursday or prior to practice on Friday as he was added to the injury report for the first time on Friday after not practicing.
The rest of the Patriots’ side of the injury report included wide receiver Nelson Agholor with an ankle issue, tackle Yodny Cajuste with a hamstring problem, safety Jalen Mills with an ankle injury, and linebacker Ronnie Perkins with a shoulder issue. All four player were limited in Friday’s practice and listed as questionable for Sunday.
Miami wide receiver Preston Williams was limited in Friday’s workout as well with a lingering foot issue. He was the only player to receive a designation on the injury report for the Dolphins, being listed as questionable for the game.
Tackle Liam Eichenberg (thigh), safety Claton Fejedelem (shoulder), wide receiver DeVante Parker (shoulder), linebacker Elandon Roberts (knee), and wide receiver Albert Wilson (quadriceps) were all full participants in Friday’s practice. Running back Salvon Ahmed, who had been a full participant in practices on Wednesday and Thursday despite a back issue, was removed from the injury report on Friday and will be available for the game on Sunday.
The Dolphins and Patriots kickoff at 4:25pm ET on Sunday.
UPDATE: The Dolphins updated their injury report on Saturday, adding tackle Austin Jackson, who was removed from the reserve/COVID-19 list, as questionable for the game. He is listed with an illness, likely as a precaution as part of his recovery from the virus. He is traveling to New England.