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Dolphins fear Long MCL sprain may cost 1-3 weeks

The Dolphins have initially diagnosed the Jake Long injury as a medial collateral sprain, according to ESPN's Adam Shefter and the team is expecting results from an MRI to be available late tonight or tomorrow morning.

If that initial diagnosis is correct and so far nothing is certain because only the MRI will tell for sure, Long is likely to miss between one and three weeks if the sprain is mild. If the sprain is a moderate one, which the Dolphins don't think, Long could be out 3-4 weeks.

If Long has a torn MCL, this becomes an issue of more significant proportions in that Long could miss four to six weeks. Again, the Dolphins do not believe the injury to be this severe.

Understand that even under the best-case scenario, Long will not play against Dallas in the preseason finale Wednesday and will likely be limited in practice availability the week leading to the Sept. 9 regular-season opener against Houston.

His status for that game depends largely on his ability to recover quickly.

On another injury note, linebacker Karlos Dansby also will not play against Dallas. He said today he and coach Joe Philbin came to an understanding that he would skip the Dallas game but be ready for the season-opener.

Dansby will have played only in the preseason opener but he has been practicing.