Quarterback Ryan Tannehill will miss his third consecutive game Thursday but will resume throwing this week, coach Adam Gase said Monday. In his absence, Brock Osweiler will make a third consecutive start when Miami plays at the Texans this week.
Gase said Tannehill might not necessarily throw an NFL football this week; he cracked that it might instead be a Nerf ball. Tannehill has not thrown a pass since a session hours before the Oct. 14 game against Chicago.
He was ruled out that day and has not thrown a pass since.
“Ryan is in a good spot,” Gase said. “We will probably be able to do some things with him throwing.”
Gase said the team likely would have an idea next weekend about his availability in the immediate future. The team believes there’s a chance Tannehill could play Nov. 4 against the Jets but doesn’t yet know.
Tannehill, who throws with his right arm, threw a few passes left-handed in Monday night’s practice. He didn’t throw with his right arm in the part of practice open to the media.
The Dolphins have not confirmed the nature of the shoulder injury but said he won’t need surgery.
Osweiler has a 107 passer rating in two starts, which ranks eighth among all NFL quarterbacks who have at least two starts. He has thrown six touchdowns and two interceptions and completed 67.5 percent of his passes.
He said Monday that his footwork and mechanics have improved considerably since he was traded by Houston to Cleveland in March 2017.
THIS AND THAT
▪ The Dolphins said four players would not have practiced even if the team had practiced Monday — receiver Albert Wilson (likely out for the season with a hip injury, according to Gase), defensive end Charles Harris (calf), receiver Kenny Stills (will miss Thursday’s game, per Gase) and tight end A.J. Derby (foot).
Also, four players would have been limited: Osweiler with a back injury (Gase said it’s not a concern), receiver Danny Amendola (shoulder), tight end Mike Gesicki (shoulder) and safety T.J. McDonald (ankle/knee). Gase didn’t seem too concerned about the Gesicki injury.
▪ The Dolphins should get defensive end Jonathan Woodard back; he’s out of concussion protocol.
▪ The Dolphins have only 11 sacks in seven games, which ranks ahead of only Atlanta, New England, Oakland and the Giants.
Gase said sacks are “irrevelant,” and he’s more concerned about pass disruption. And in that area, “it’s not good enough,” Gase said. “We want to be up in top five. We haven’t done that.”
He said opponents are “keying” on defensive ends Cameron Wake and Robert Quinn. “Every game Andre Branch plays, he will get stronger,” Gase said.
▪ Gase was upset about a run defense that allowed 248 yards on 7.1 per carry. Miami has dropped to 30th in the league in rush defense.
“The film showed we didn’t play well as a group,” Gase said. “It was bad. Everybody needs to make sure we play as a group. We didn’t do a good job of all three levels work together. We had an opportunity to do something at home, win a game and put ourselves in really good position. They gutted us on defense. Too many big holes. We didn’t play well as a group. It’s not about lineup changes. It’s about guys being on the same page to make sure we have a chance to stop the run.”
▪ Some notable snap count totals from Sunday’s loss to Detroit:
At running back, Kenyan Drake played 36 snaps, Frank Gore 25 and Kalen Ballage three. Drake played several of those snaps at receiver when Miami was short-handed at receiver on its final possession.
At tight end, Nick O’Leary played 39 snaps, Gesicki 16 and Durham Smythe four.
Wesley Johnson filled in three snaps for guard Ted Larsen when Larsen briefly left with an injury.
Five Dolphins played all 64 snaps on defense: Bobby McCain, Xavien Howard, Reshad Jones, Kiko Alonso and T.J. McDonald. Defensive back Minkah Fitzpatrick played 37.
At linebacker beyond Alonso, Raekwon McMillan played 54 snaps, Jerome Baker 31 and Stephone Anthony six.
At defensive tackle, Davon Godchaux played 47 snaps, Akeem Spence 41, Vincent Taylor 23 and Jamiyus Pittman 15.
At defensive end, Quinn and Wake each played 37, Branch 29 and Cameron Malveaux 27.