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Dolphins monitoring high ankle for Jaylen Waddle, not shin; Raheem Mostert, Austin Jackson injury updates

The injury that Miami Dolphins wide receiver Jaylen Waddle sustained in Sunday’s 22-20 win over the Dallas Cowboys now has been deemed more of a high ankle concern, rather than the original shin injury.

“Those can be tricky,” said coach Mike McDaniel in a Monday web conference with reporters, adding Monday follow-up examination on Waddle’s ailment provided new information from what was reported by Waddle to trainers during the game. The coach said more information will need to be gathered by doctors in the coming days.

Waddle hurt the ankle/shin deep into the third quarter against the Cowboys as he was pushed out of bounds on a rushing attempt down the right side. Waddle didn’t return, finishing with one early reception for 50 yards that put him over 1,000 for the season, and he was seen limping slowly whenever he moved on the sideline, to the medical tent or going in and out of the tunnel.

McDaniel said Monday he’s optimistic the ailment won’t keep Waddle out long.

“He’s a really, really tough player,” McDaniel said. “He’s battled through several things this year, which has made him even more eager as a playmaker to make up for that with his play.

“It does give me optimism because of the individual, because of what he has gone through, for sure. He’s had several things that have been real, that other players, especially at that position, might take him longer.”

It will be a critical week of preparation for Waddle with a game against the Baltimore Ravens, which could determine the top seed in the AFC, on tap. He could be expected to miss practice early in the week, beginning Wednesday, ahead of the Sunday Week 17 game in Baltimore.

In addition to the lower leg injury, Waddle also got poked in the eye early in Sunday’s action, but he returned to the game after getting that checked out. Earlier this season, Waddle missed the Sept. 24 game against the Denver Broncos with a concussion sustained the week before at New England. He also hurt his chest earlier this December against the Tennessee Titans and had a ribs injury in the preseason, sustained in a joint practice with the Atlanta Falcons. Waddle has also been on injury reports this season for knee and back treatment.

While it was thought two different Dolphins skill players had shin injuries, it turns out it was only running back Raheem Mostert that suffer one against the Cowboys.

“Shingate,” McDaniel called it, jokingly. “No one passed out shin guards before the game. No one wore them.”

Mostert returned to action, although he was out a considerable amount of time in the first half before getting back in before halftime and catching a 4-yard touchdown pass from quarterback Tua Tagovailoa.

“It wasn’t because he was unable or because he wasn’t willing to go. It was quite the opposite,” McDaniel said of snaps missed for Mostert.

“The relationship that he and I have — (running backs coach) Eric Studesville and myself,  because we have so many tough-minded and tough players on the team — we’ve become kind of like body language readers. Raheem wanted to go in the game, and it had nothing to do with that. It was more that we could tell it was pretty painful at the time.

“To the credit of the room, we had so much confidence in that room and all the different guys that you kind of are able to ride the momentum.”

The Dolphins had right tackle Austin Jackson active against the Cowboys, but they didn’t start him. McDaniel said he was available in the event of an emergency on the offensive line, but he wasn’t prepared to start and play a full 60-minute game with limitations from his oblique injury that had him entering questionable.

“He was a warrior to even be able to dress,” McDaniel said. “We kind of knew it was going to go down to the wire, which it did in the course of the week. We felt like he could strain through some ball, but to be able to get through the whole game, we thought that that was unfair.

“We have so much confidence in Kendall (Lamm). It was definitely the most appropriate thing to do, with regard to where he was at.”

McDaniel added he’s “very optimistic” about Jackson’s availability for Sunday in Baltimore.

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