The Miami Dolphins begin a critical two-game stretch to end the 2022 NFL regular season without their starting quarterback. While it was not a surprise, the team officially ruled quarterback Tua Tagovailoa out of Sunday’s game against the New England Patriots as he continues to deal with a concussion he sustained against the Green Bay Packers last week. Tagovailoa was the only player ruled out of the contest for the Dolphins, though the Patriots listed four players as unavailable.
New England will be without cornerbacks Jack Jones and Marcus Jones along with wide receiver DeVante Parker and tight end Jonnu Smith. Jackson Jones is dealing with a knee injury while Marcus Jones, Parker, and Smith are all dealing with concussions.
The Dolphins ruled offensive tackle Eric Fisher as doubtful for the game as he continues to deal with a calf injury.
Offensive tackle Terron Armstead, cornerback Xavien Howard, linebacker Bradley Chubb, wide receiver River Cracraft, fullback Alec Ingold, and tackle Greg Little were all listed as questionable for Miami. Armstead, who has been dealing with a toe injury all season along with pectoral and knee issues the last several weeks, also added a hip injury this week. Howard has a knee injury, while Chubb has issues with his ankle and hand. Cracraft has been trying to work through a calf injury but has been forced to miss game time due to the issue. Ingold has a thumb issue while Little was added to the injury report on Friday with a foot issue.
Dolphins head coach Mike McDaniel described Ingold, Chubb, Howard, and Armstead as gametime decisions. “He’s a warrior, but that one falls under the same [gametime decision] umbrella for him as well, where he’s going to push it until game time and see if he can give it a go,” McDaniel said of Armstead. “He knows that our team is best served when he’s out there, but he also knows that he has an obligation to the team because we do have other players that are very much capable that he doesn’t need to put himself in harm’s way. So that’s the balancing act that only he can really determine.”
As for an update on Tagovailoa’s status, McDaniel explained, “Yeah, he’s still in protocol and I just go day by day as instructed. I would say that he’s better than the day before, but I’m also trying to get a team ready to play this game and it really doesn’t do anybody any service to overtalk in this scenario where he’s got to be focused on his health and nothing else.”
For the Patriots, tight end Hunter Henry is questionable with a knee injury. Also questionable for Sunday are cornerback Jonathan Jones, with a chest issue, cornerback Jalen Mills, who is dealing with a groin injury, running back Rhamondre Stevenson, who has an ankle injury, and wide receiver Tyquan Thornton, who has a knee injury. Mills looks set to return to a depleted secondary for the Patriots; the veteran has missed the last four games with his injury.