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Dolphins getting ready for Wed. afternoon practice

Rookie Jared Odrick will not practice today as he continues to make his way back from a hairline fracture on his right leg but the Dolphins are still optimistic the defensive end could contribute on at least a part-time basis versus New England Monday night.

The decision won't be made until later this week but the biggest clue whether Odrick will play even a bit will come whether he practices by Friday, I'm told. Stay tuned.

Linebacker Channing Crowder is scheduled to practice when the team takes the practice field at 3 p.m., according to coach Tony Sparano. "He'll do a little more," than he did last week, the coach said. The Dolphins will measure Crowder's progress or lack thereof and make a decision by Friday or so whether Crowder will play against the Patriots.

Linebacker Ikaika Alama-Francis will practice today and Sparano said he is "close" to being back to his full weight and being able to play in a game.

The Dolphins had Austin Spitler miss a couple of weeks during training camp because of a sickness. Alama-Francis got sick the morning of the regular-season opener and was knocked out for a while. And guard John Jerry missed last week's game versus New York because of a stomach sickness.

"We've had our share of sickness and it knocked guys down body weight-wise," Sparano said.

But despite the curious number of "sicknesses" the coach said there has been no common thread to the three that should raise concerns.

The Dolphins have waived linebacker Erik Walden. He missed a block on what became a punt block during Sunday night's game versus New York. The Dolphins signed defensive lineman Rob Rose off the practice squad to the 53-man roster to replace Walden.

The Patriots are already practicing in Foxboro, MA. Running back Fred Taylor (toe) was not present for the start of practice. Cornerback Terrence Wheatley and OL Nick Kaczur were also missing.

[UPDATE: Jerry, nursing the sickness, is not practicing today.]

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