With projected starting left guard Ted Larsen on injured reserve due to a torn bicep, the Miami Dolphins have called upon Anthony Steen to be their Week 1 starter at left guard against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Steen has been in a battle with second-year player Jesse Davis for the position but according to coach Adam Gase, Steen has emerged victorious.
“Right now it looks like [Anthony] Steen will probably be our guy, unless something changes throughout the week,” Gase said. “He’s done a really good job with the flexibility to move to multiple positions; for us, it’s always a positive.
“The more centers you can have on your roster, the better. He’s really come through for us in a lot of different spots and we like a lot of the things that he does.”
Steen gave the Dolphins quality reps at center and guard last season with starters Mike Pouncey and Laremy Tunsil missing games. He played well in relief of Pouncey and Tunsil until he suffered high ankle sprain. Steen will again be asked to fill in at left guard until Week 8, which is when Larsen is expected to return to the active roster.
The Dolphins are also in the process of figuring out who their starting MIKE backer will be against the Buccaneers. Gase added no insight other than: “We’ll practice today and kind of see how it goes.”
Mike Hull has received the majority of the snaps at middle linebacker since projected starter Raekwon McMillan was lost for the season with an ACL injury. The Dolphins also signed veteran Rey Maualuga Aug. 19.
Maualuga is still rounding into shape, but he has knowledge of the defense as Dolphins defensive coordinator Matt Burke was his positions coach during his time in Cincinnati.
The Dolphins will likely take a wait-and-see approach to the starting cornerback position opposite Xavien Howard as well. Byron Maxwell was projected to be the starter, but the coaching staff opened the position back up for competition following the Dolphins’ third preseason game against the Philadelphia Eagles.
It remains to be seen whether Alterraun Verner or Byron Maxwell gets the start Week 1 as Gase seems willing to wait to make a decision on who the second cornerback will be.
“… I mean we’re going to go through this week. We’ll figure that out by the end of the week,” said Gase.
With Hurricane Irma barreling down on South Florida, Gase might need to expedite his decision-making process, as there is potential for the game to be moved from Sunday, to Thursday or Friday.