The man who saved the Miami Dolphins in Week 16 won’t be available to repeat those heroics with the playoffs on the line. The Dolphins placed quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick on the COVID-19/reserve list Thursday, making Fitzpatrick ineligible for Sunday’s game against the Buffalo Bills.
We have signed QB Jake Rudock, have placed QB Ryan Fitzpatrick on the reserve/COVID-19 list, placed LB Elandon Roberts on injured reserve, and activated WR Kirk Merritt as a COVID-19 replacement for Sunday’s game.
— Miami Dolphins (@MiamiDolphins) December 31, 2020
The loss comes at an awful time for Miami. While the Dolphins currently hold the No. 5 seed in the AFC, the team is not guaranteed to make it to the postseason. If the Dolphins lose to the Bills in Week 17, the Baltimore Ravens, Cleveland Browns and Indianapolis Colts could all jump ahead of Miami if they win their games.
The news also comes less than a week after Fitzpatrick pulled off an unbelievable comeback against the Las Vegas Raiders. With 12 seconds left on the clock, Fitzpatrick completed a 34-yard pass to Mack Hollins while Fitzpatrick’s face mask was being grabbed by a defender. That completion and penalty set up a field goal to give Miami the 26-25 win.
The team signed Jake Rudock to replace Fitzpatrick on the active roster.
Who will start at QB for Dolphins in Week 17?
Following Miami’s shocking win in Week 16, Dolphins coach Brian Flores said Tua Tagovailoa would start in Week 17. Tagovailoa started against the Raiders, but was pulled for Fitzpatrick in the fourth quarter. It was the second time this season Tagovailoa was benched for Fitzpatrick in the middle of a game.
The Dolphins won’t have that luxury this time around. Tagovailoa will likely have to play the entire game. If the Dolphins are trailing late and desperately need a comeback, it will fall to the rookie to get that done.
While there was concern over whether Tagovailoa would be eligible for the contest, Tagovailoa was not considered a close contact with Fitzpatrick. No Dolphins player was designated a close contact with Fitzpatrick by the NFL.
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