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Dolphins cancel joint practice with Eagles amid 'non-COVID illness'

Head coach Mike McDaniel says 'stomach bug' affecting 'more than a couple' players
Miami Dolphins helmet on field in Tampa, Aug. 13, 2022
Posted at 9:00 AM, Aug 25, 2022
and last updated 2022-08-25 12:46:27-04

MIAMI GARDENS, Fla. — The Miami Dolphins have canceled Thursday's joint practice session with the Philadelphia Eagles.

A news release from the Dolphins said the team would instead be meeting virtually "out of an abundance of caution as a result of a non-COVID illness."

Dolphins head coach Mike McDaniel said some players had come down with a "stomach bug" overnight.

"That was kind of a unique curveball early this morning," McDaniel told reporters Thursday morning during his regularly scheduled news conference. "It was just an accumulation of some players having having a stomach bug that we don't really know totally where it was coming from, and we're just trying to be overly cautious so that we didn't further affect players on the team, as well as we had to think of the best interest of the Philadelphia Eagles as well. We couldn't, in good conscience, just move forward and try to limit reps in practice."

When asked how many players were sick, McDaniel said it was "more than a couple."

Miami Dolphins head coach Mike McDaniel talks to QB Skylar Thompson during second half of preseason game vs. Las Vegas Raiders, Aug. 20, 2022
Miami Dolphins head coach Mike McDaniel talks to quarterback Skylar Thompson during the second half of a preseason game against the Las Vegas Raiders, Saturday, Aug. 20, 2022, in Miami Gardens, Fla.

"So it's not half the team by any stretch, but that's what I was trying to prevent, is I didn't want to have half half the team drained out from a stomach bug, fight through the heat and then have depleted performance in the preseason game," McDaniel said. "Because for a lot of guys, it's the most important game of their career, and I hold a strong amount of value to that and didn't want to compromise that in any way."

McDaniel said a "couple of staff members" were also affected.

"Which is why the decision was easy, just because I really didn't want this to linger, and the best way to nip in the bud was just aggressively act, erring on the side of caution," McDaniel said.

The Dolphins and Eagles held the first of two scheduled joint sessions Wednesday ahead of Saturday's final preseason game at Hard Rock Stadium.

McDaniel said he isn't sure whether this will impact who plays Saturday night.

"I'm hoping the whole intent with having the guys not come in and not practice today was to nip it in the bud so that it wouldn't be affected," McDaniel said. "But we'll see. That's not something that really rattles me. I'll just adjust. That's kind of the nature of my job."

The Eagles were still practicing Thursday in South Florida as planned.