Game Preview: Dolphins-Jaguars

The Dolphins will attempt to reach the .500 mark for the first time this season (not counting before they actually played their first game) when they take on the Jacksonville Jaguars Sunday at Dolphin Stadium. Here's a complete look at the matchup.


KICKOFF: Sunday, 4:05 ET


TV: CBS, Kevin Harlan, Rich Gannon

SERIES: 3rd meeting. The teams split their two regular season meetings with the Dolphins winning, 24-10, at ALLTEL Stadium in Jack Del Rio's first season in 2003. But the teams play in the preseason every year and the Jaguars posted a 31-26 preseason win in Miami on Aug. 12. They also played in one postseason game, which the Jaguars won, 62-7, to end the careers of both Dan Marino and Jimmy Johnson. The Jaguars haven't won a postseason game since.

2006 RANKINGS: Jaguars: offense 17th (3rd rush, 24th pass); defense 3rd (5th rush, 5th pass). Dolphins: offense 16th (24th rush, 12th pass); defense 5th (6th rush, 7th pass)

KEYS TO THE GAME: This is an opportunity for Dolphins QB Joey Harrington to prove he truly has emerged into a quality NFL starter. During the team's four-game winning streak, Miami has relied heavily on the run. But RB Ronnie Brown is out and the Jaguars are extremely difficult to run on with DTs John Henderson and Marcus Stroud plugging the interior. Harrington will be asked to make more plays on his own and likely will have a difficult time selling too much play-action. The Jaguars also know running the ball will be difficult against the Dolphins' front seven, but will still attempt to establish RBs Fred Taylor and Maurice Jones-Drew. The Jaguars' receivers enjoy a big height advantage against the Dolphins' smallish secondary, but Jacksonville has received extremely inconsistent performances from their wideouts the past two months.

FAST FACTS: Jaguars: Have never played in Dolphin Stadium. ... Are 17-2 under coach Jack Del Rio when leading after the first quarter. Dolphins: DE Jason Taylor needs one sack to tie Jim Jeffcoat (102.5) for 19th most all-time. ... Have a five-game winning streak in December and January.



-- CB Brian Williams, who has a hamstring injury, returned to practice Thursday, but he is still listed as questionable. He hopes to start in Miami on Sunday.

-- CB Terry Cousin, who has missed five games with a torn groin, practiced Wednesday and Thursday and was upgraded from doubtful to questionable.

-- DT Marcus Stroud (ankle) didn't practice Thursday, the team announced, but he remains questionable. The team announced Wednesday he didn't practice but amended that to say he practiced Wednesday but didn't go Thursday.

-- S Nick Sorensen, who has a hamstring injury, didn't practice Wednesday and Thursday and remains listed as questionable.

-- RB Maurice Jones-Drew was added to the injury report Thursday as probable with a hamstring injury. He practiced and is likely to play.


-- CB Will Allen, who missed last week's victory over the Lions, practiced without limitations Thursday. Despite being listed as questionable, he will play Sunday.

-- CB Michael Lehan, a key contributor on special teams and at times in nickel and dime situations, practiced with a mask to protect his surgically repaired nose. He was upgraded from doubtful to questionable.

-- LG Jeno James, who will miss his third consecutive game since undergoing knee surgery, said he hopes to play next week against the Patriots.

-- RB Patrick Cobbs is expected to be promoted from the practice squad to help out on special teams and possibly take a few snaps at running back in relief of Sammy Morris and Travis Minor.

-- RB Sammy Morris will receive his first start of the season in place of injured starter Ronnie Brown (hand), and he also will play on a few special teams, where he excels. CB Michael Lehan, RB Travis Minor and Morris are the team's top three tacklers on special teams.

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