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Dolphins Notebook: Dieter Back, the Hall and Zach, Pro Bowl Voting, More

Center Michael Deiter was designated to return after being back at Miami Dolphins practice

The Miami Dolphins got closer to getting one of their injured players back Wednesday.

Center Michael Deiter, who has been on injured reserve since Oct. 2, was back at practice and designated for return, which gives the Dolphins three weeks to decide whether to put him back on the active roster or keep him on IR for the rest of the season.

Deiter played every snap at center in the first three games before sustaining a quad injury in practice during the week leading up to the Week 4 game against the Indianapolis Colts.

Since then, Greg Mancz and Austin Reiter have taken turns starting at center.

It's too early to try to guess when the Dolphins might activate Deiter, though one would think it wouldn't happen this week.

The Dolphins have three other players currently eligible to come off IR with Will Fuller V, DeVante Parker and Malcolm Brown, and Mancz will be joining them next week.

ZACH AND THE HALL OF FAME

This really was pretty much a formality, but we need to mention it anyway: Zach Thomas was among those named as modern-era semifinalists for the Pro Football Hall of Fame Class of 2022.

This is the fourth consecutive year Thomas has been a semifinalist, and he was a finalist each of the past two years.

The Class of 2022, which will feature between four and eight inductees, will be announced during the NFL Honors show Thursday, Feb. 10 — three days before Super Bowl LVI in Los Angeles.

This story from June 2020 remains very relevant when it comes to Thomas belonging in the Hall of Fame.

PRO BOWL VOTING

Fan voting for the 2022 Pro Bowl has begun, and the NFL released its first set of results Wednesday showing no Dolphins player leading at his position.

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The Dolphins do have three players in the top 10 at their position, according to Hal Habib of the Palm Beach Post: Mike Gesicki is seventh among NFL tight ends; Xavien Howard is seventh among cornerbacks; and Michael Palardy is seventh among punters.

Fan voting, which goes on through Dec. 16, can be done at probowl.com and counts for one-third of the selection process.

The 2022 Pro Bowl will be played Sunday, Feb. 6 at Allegiant Stadium in Las Vegas, with kickoff scheduled for 3 p.m. ET.

NEW PRACTICE PLAYER

With the Dolphins signing Vince Biegel to the active roster Wednesday, the team replaced him on the practice squad with another linebacker, Wynton McManis.

Since entering the NFL as a rookie free agent in 2016, McManis has played three regular season games, two with the 49ers during his rookie year and one this season with the New Orleans Saints.

McManis played in the Canadian Football League with Calgary from 2017-19 before opting out of his contract when the CFL canceled its 2020  season because of COVID-19.

SMYTHE STANDS UP FOR GESICKI

Two days after Mike Gesicki campaigned for him during a Zoom media session wearing his jersey number 81, Durham Smythe met the media at the Baptist Health Training Complex.

He was wearing a normal T-shirt and not a Gesicki jersey, which this reporter immediately pointed out to him.

“To start off, I want to say I left my Mike Gesicki shirt in Texas," Smythe said. "I have one. Post bye-week when I’m back up here, you guys will see that. It will be perfect timing, right in time for the Pro Bowl push, so I’ll have that on but that’s a little delayed right now. The relationship isn’t one-sided, so you can’t think of it like that.”

The obvious follow-up question was to get Smythe's take on what Gesicki did and his comments.

“Yeah, I mean that’s just kind of the guy he is," Smythe said. "A guy that gets a lot of attention around the building and then he passes it on to guys that maybe aren’t talked as much about – the offensive line, other tight ends like myself. That’s just kind of the guy he is. It comes back full circle and says a lot about him.”

While Gesicki said Monday that he and Smythe had dinner the previous night, Smythe said he didn't know about Gesicki's plans for his media session.

“I actually had no idea," Smythe said. "Our security guy, Drew Brooks, sent me about three pictures of him and people’s reactions. I was actually driving on my way to the building. I had no idea so it was pretty fun.”