(Video courtesy CBSSports.com)
The Miami Dolphins have some shuffling to do along the offensive line.
The unit suffered a severe blow on Monday when four-time Pro Bowl left tackle Jake Long suffered a right MCL sprain that could keep him out for up to three weeks. Long played through a myriad injuries the past few years and was having one of the best training camps of his career before the injury.
The 6-foot-7, 319-pounder is expected to be ready for Week 1 on Sept. 9 against Houston, but there are no guarantees with knee injuries. First-year coach Joe Philbin has a zero-tolerance policy of discussing injuries, so the exact timeline of Long's recovery is unknown.
“I have no information,” Philbin said, “and even if I did at this point, I wouldn't be sharing it.”
As a result of the injury, second-round draft pick Jonathan Martin was moved from right tackle to the left side. This likely will force 11-year veteran right guard Artis Hicks to slide to tackle while guard John Jerry moves into the starting lineup.
Backup tackle Lydon Murtha also missed practice last week as a result of a foot injury, further complicating matters.
“It's a tough game these guys play,” Philbin said. “There's a lot of injuries out there.”
More reps: Rookie quarterback Ryan Tannehill won't sit out the team's final preseason game against the Cowboys on Wednesday.
Philbin said the eighth-overall selection in April's draft will get some time with the first team in preparation for the season opener against the Texans. Starters typically play very little -- if at all -- in the fourth preseason game.
However, with a short week for the team to prepare and limited reps with the starters for Tannehill, Philbin has opted to keep the rookie in the line of fire. But he did not make a commitment to the number of reps the former Texas A&M star would receive.
“I think every rep we get as an offense, we get closer and closer to where we're trying to get,” Tannehill said. “We're just improving every day and getting more comfortable with everything that's going on every day with the different guys that are running the routes, guys blocking.”