Left tackle Branden Albert’s first season with the Dolphins has officially come to a premature end.
Coach Joe Philbin announced that Albert will miss the rest of the season because of the knee injury that forced him out of Sunday’s loss to the Lions. Albert was targeted as the key to a rebuild of the offensive line after the group imploded on and off the field in 2013 and Albert was just what the team hoped he’d be as the anchor on the left side of the line.
Rookie Ja’Wuan James moved from the right side of the line to the left after Albert was injured and veteran Nate Garner took over as the right tackle in what’s a likely alignment for the Dolphins to adopt in the wake of Albert’s loss. It would be a stretch to expect James to play as well as Albert has played this season, but the drop can’t be too drastic if the Dolphins are going to navigate their way to a playoff spot.
Albert will be headed to injured reserve and it looks like running back LaMichael James will be replacing him on the roster. James’s agent Jeff Sperbeck announced the move on Twitter and James could be helpful in a short week with Lamar Miller still battling a shoulder injury that limited him against the Lions.