As they did in Week 7, the Miami Dolphins conducted a walk-through for their first practice of the week heading into their game against the Buffalo Bills on Sunday.
Because of the light physical nature of walk-throughs, every player was in attendance at practice Wednesday and the first injury report of the week was report based on an estimation of what the injured players' practice participation would have been in a normal setting.
The Dolphins ended up listing nine players that would have had limited participation, which is an improvement over last week when that number was 12.
That list included the three players who missed the game against the Atlanta Falcons because of injuries: WR DeVante Parker (shoulder/hamstring), CB Noah Igbinoghene (knee/ankle) and C Greg Mancz (groin). Also included was linebacker Jerome Baker, who left the Atlanta game early with a knee injury.
The remaining five players: CB Xavien Howard (shoulder/groin), S Brandon Jones (ankle), CB Byron Jones (Achilles/groin), OLB Jaelan Phillips (ankle) and LB Elandon Roberts (shoulder).
Three players were given full participation tags, including quarterbacks Tua Tagovailoa (ribs) and Jacoby Brissett (hamstring).
NEW QB IN TOWN
The Dolphins signed a quarterback Wednesday, but the addition came on the practice squad.
The team signed Jake Dolegala, who spent three months on the New England Patriots last season but otherwise has bounced around since entering the NFL as an undrafted free agent out of Central Connecticut State in 2019.
The thing that stands out about Dolegala is his height, as he stands 6-7.
Dolegala was signed after the Dolphins worked out three quarterbacks Wednesday morning. The other two were former Washington State starter Anthony Gordon and Kyle Sloter out of Southern Miss and Northern Colorado.
Like Dolegala, neither Gordon nor Sloter have ever thrown an NFL regular season pass.
Dolegala was signed because the Philadelphia Eagles claimed QB Reid Sinnett off waivers Monday, thwarting the Dolphins' plans to re-sign him to the practice squad.
PRACTICE SQUAD PROTECTIONS
The Dolphins maybe revealed their plans at running back for the game against Buffalo when they made rookie seventh-round pick Gerrid Doaks one of the four practice squad protections of the week.
It's the first time this season that Doaks was protected, and another reason to believe he'll be the running back elevated from the practice squad against the Bills is that he's the only of the three (Patrick Laird and newcomer Duke Johnson are the others) with good size and the Dolphins need that to go along with Myles Gaskin and Salvon Ahmed.
Along with Doaks, the other players the Dolphins protected this week were WR Kirk Merritt, CB Jamal Perry and C Cameron Tom, who was elevated for the game against Atlanta, dressed for the game but did not play.
MUNSON ON THE MOVE
Linebacker Calvin Munson was not protected this week for only the second time all season, and that's all it took for the Dolphins to lose him.
Munson was signed by the New England Patriots to their active roster Wednesday, returning to the team for which he played before joining the Dolphins late in the 2019 season.
Munson played all 16 games for the Dolphins in 2020, but was among the final cuts when the team got down to the 53-player limit this September.
FEELING THE 'POP'
Despite the 1-6 record, Dolphins players say there hasn't been a dip in energy at the team's practice facility.
In fact, cornerback Byron Jones says it's just the opposite.
"There’s actually a really good pop and a sense of focus and a sense of urgency to get it right," Jones said Wednesday. "I think we all understand how hard it is to be in this position, just to be an NFL player, and we’re not trying to squander this opportunity so the sense of urgency is very high. It’s actually nice to see.”
Christian Wilkins echoed Jones' sentiments.
"I feel like there’s definitely still great energy around the facility and around the building," Wilkins said. "Guys just come in still every day with the right mind-set and just want to get better and want to keep striving to be our best.”
SCOUTING J.K. SCOTT
Here's a name to remember in case the Dolphins ever decide to make a switch at punter: J.K. Scott.
The Green Bay Packers' punter the past three seasons, Scott worked out for the Dolphins on Tuesday, even though the team didn't sign him. He averaged 44.6 yards in his three seasons after playing for Nick Saban at the University of Alabama.
The timing of the workout, if nothing else, was interesting considering first-year Dolphins punter Michael Palardy just had his best outing of the season against Atlanta when he averaged 51.3 yards on three punts with a net of 45.7 and one punt inside the 20.