The inevitable finally happened on Tuesday as the Dolphins place offensive tackle Mark Dixon on injured reserve.

The move had been expected since last week when Coach Dave Wannstedt indicated the time had come for something to happen with Dixon, whether it be a return to action or the move to injured reserve.

The Dolphins then began bringing in veteran offensive tackle for workouts, so the writing was on the wall and it was just a matter of time.

This move means Dixon is ineligible to return this season.

What landed Dixon on injured reserve is the constant he had felt in his right ankle since undergoing his second surgery early in the regular season.

Dolphins head athletic trainer Kevin O'Neill said extended rest might eliminate the pain in Dixon's ankle, but there are no guarantees Dixon will ever be able to play pain-free again.

Also on Tuesday, the Dolphins announced that defensive end David Bowens would return to practice.

Bowens, who has been on the reserve/non-football injury list all season, must be activated by 4 p.m. on Nov. 25 or remain on the NFI list the entire season.

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