STRANGE NIGHT

There definitely is going to be something weird about Monday night's game against the Dolphins and the San Diego Chargers. It was supposed to be Junior Seau's homecoming and a night full of emotions. Instead, the game has taken on a surreal atmosphere because of the move to Tempe, Ariz.

Everyone knows by now the game had to be switched because of the wildfires raging through Southern California, and the decision was made to put the game at Sun Devil Stadium after both San Francisco and Oakland also reportedly were given consideration.

The Dolphins flew to Arizona on Monday morning, and there's little question there is some disruption to their routine. But that obviously is nothing compared to the Chargers, who were preparing for a home game and suddenly had to move.

In terms of the game itself, it's obviously an important game for the Dolphins, who need to win to stay a half-game behind New England in the AFC East race.

What follows is a preview of the Dolphins-Chargers matchup.

WHO: Miami Dolphins (4-2) vs. San Diego Chargers (1-5)

WHEN: Monday, 9 p.m. ET

WHERE: Sun Devil Stadium, Tempe, Ariz.

TV: ABC (Al Michaels, play-by-play; John Madden, analysis; Lisa Guerrero, sidelines)

LINE: Dolphins by 6

NFL RANKINGS: Dolphins — 21st in the NFL in total offense, 11th in rushing offense, 27th in passing offense, 17th in total defense, 1st in rushing defense, tied for 27th in passing defense

Chargers — 15th in the NFL in total offense, 5th in rushing offense, 23rd in passing offense, 29th in total defense, 28th in rushing defense, 22nd in passing defense

COACHES: Dolphins, Dave Wannstedt (4th year with team); Chargers, Marty Schottenheimer (2nd year with team)

SERIES RECORD: The Chargers lead 12-11

LAST FIVE MEETINGS: 2002 at Miami, Dolphins 30, Chargers 3; 2000 at San Diego, Dolphins 17, Chargers 7; 1999 at Miami, Dolphins 12, Chargers 9; 1995 at San Diego, Dolphins 24, Chargers 14; 1994 playoffs at San Diego, Chargers 22, Dolphins 21

INJURIES: Dolphins — T Mark Dixon (ankle) is out; DT Larry Chester (neck/shoulder), QB Jay Fiedler (knee) and FB Rob Konrad (knee) are questionable; DT Tim Bowens (hand), WR James McKnight (oblique), LB Junior Seau (hamstring), DE Jason Taylor (elbow) and LB Zach Thomas (calf) are probable.

Chargers — TE Stephen Alexander (groin) is out; C Jason Ball (ankle), WR Reche Caldwell (wrist), S Vernon Fox (groin) and CB Quentin Jammer (ankle) are questionable; P Darren Bennett (ankle) is probable.


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