Soft-spoken DeVante Parker earlier this week stopped a reporter who suggested he was not making much progress on his surgically repaired foot because he wasn’t practicing full during the week.
“I wouldn’t say I’m not making progress,” the wide receiver said. “I am making progress.”
A clear picture of how much progress Parker is making will come Thursday night when the Miami Dolphins play the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in the final preseason game for both teams.
Parker, the Dolphins’ first-round pick, was among the first players on the field pre-game. He was taped. He looked ready to play.
And barring a setback Thursday night or in practice, he’ll be available for the regular-season opener Sept. 13 at Washington.
As a rookie, Parker needs the work. However, he won’t get that work Thursday night with quarterback Ryan Tannehill, who is not playing along with most of the team’s starters in this meaningless exhibition.
But the Dolphins want to have the best choice for playing Parker in the regular-season opener. One way to make that decision is seeing how close Parker is to playing shape, how much he is ready to contribute one week out.