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Dolphins’ Tyreek Hill dealing with new injury ahead of playoff game against Chiefs

MIAMI GARDENS, Fla. — Miami Dolphins coach Mike McDaniel said neither wide receiver Tyreek Hill’s new quadriceps injury nor his nagging ankle injury should keep him from playing in his return to Kansas City and Arrowhead Stadium for the playoff game against the Chiefs on Saturday night.

“Should I be concerned about Tyreek Hill this week? Probably not,” McDaniel said.

Hill has played through the ankle ailment since hurting it in the Dec. 11 Monday night loss to the Tennessee Titans and then missing the Dec. 17 win over the New York Jets. He has often limped through the final three regular-season games against the Dallas Cowboys, Baltimore Ravens and Buffalo Bills.

At the end of Sunday night’s loss to Buffalo, he took a hard hit, and Tuesday, he had quadriceps added to his listing on the team’s injury report, along with the ankle.

“There’s been games, specifically, the first time we played the Chiefs, this past game (against the Bills), where you can tell the opponent has made a major emphasis to create violent collisions with him,” McDaniel said. “And you want to talk about a tough football player that shows his stripes in those moments, that competitor.”

McDaniel said he didn’t know the quadriceps was of any concern until it came up on the injury report.

“I know he’s going to be very diligent in the training room to maximize his opportunity,” McDaniel added.

Safety DeShon Elliott, who played through a calf injury Sunday night, will miss Wednesday’s walkthrough with the team spending his time in the training room. Although he played 72 of the team’s 78 defensive snaps against the Bills, Elliott was also listed as a non-participant in an estimated injury report released by the team Tuesday, when the Dolphins didn’t practice.

“We’re hopeful that he’ll be able to get himself right for game day, and that’s what our main objective is,” McDaniel said.

McDaniel has expressed optimism since postgame against the Bills that wide receiver Jaylen Waddle and running back Raheem Mostert should be able to make a return from a two-game absence with ankle injuries Saturday night in Kansas City.

The Dolphins coach expressed excitement over the team’s matchup, despite missing out on home-field advantage in the first two rounds of the postseason with Sunday night’s loss.

“It’s going to be a prime-time game at Arrowhead,” McDaniel said. “I just got goosebumps right now.”

Among reasons McDaniel decided not to travel early to Kansas City amid forecasts for the coldest game in Dolphins history and one of the coldest in league history, prime among them was access to rehabilitation care at the team’s facility rather than on the road. He also felt the team responded well last time it played in extreme conditions, at Buffalo in December 2022.

McDaniel said the air conditioning at the team’s indoor facility gets down to about 50 degrees.

“That’s kind of insulting to the weather over there,” he quipped.

Temperatures are forecasted to be in single digits with a wind chill below zero at Arrowhead Stadium on Saturday night.

Smith’s interview

McDaniel reacted to Dolphins offensive coordinator Frank Smith being requested for a head coaching interview with the Carolina Panthers after two seasons in his role with Miami.

“He’s very deserving of the opportunity to interview. … It’s not if, but when. Whenever he does, he’s going to do an outstanding job.”

In a similar way, McDaniel interviewed with the Dolphins during the 2021 postseason run as the San Francisco 49ers offensive coordinator.

Ingram to active roster

The Dolphins signed veteran pass rusher Melvin Ingram to the active roster after he was on the team’s practice squad and elevated three times to finish the regular season.

The team had a roster spot open after Tuesday’s moves of adding veteran edge defenders Justin Houston and Bruce Irvin and placing linebackers Andrew Van Ginkel, Cameron Goode and Jerome Baker on injured reserve.

With the open practice squad spot, Miami brought back Malik Reed officially Wednesday, as the South Florida Sun Sentinel reported Tuesday.