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Miami's Webb Out For 6 Weeks


The most durable starter in Miami Dolphins history will miss a game for the first time in seven years Sunday.

Richmond Webb's team-record streak of 118 consecutive starts will end when Miami plays Indianapolis. The 320-pound left tackle tore the triceps in his left arm Sunday during the Dolphins' 30-24 loss at Buffalo.

"There's a possibility he could miss up to six weeks or more," coach Jimmy Johnson said Monday. The regular season ends in eight weeks.

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  • Aside from Dan Marino, Webb could be considered Miami's most indispensable player. The absence of the seven-time Pro Bowl tackle is worrisome partly because he protects Marino's blind side, and the Dolphins desperately need to keep their quarterback healthy because backup Craig Erickson underwent season-ending elbow surgery Monday.

    Webb, a reliable pass protector, also has helped rejuvenate a ground game that produced 128 yards at Buffalo.

    "Richmond was doing a good job of something he hadn't done in a long time -- concentrating on bearing down on the run-blocking," Johnson said. "This is a setback."

    The Dolphins (5-3) are in four-way tie for first place in the AFC East, which means they can't afford a misstep against Indianapolis (1-7).

    Johnson said he'll try to give the offense a spark by dividing playing time more evenly between his top two running backs, Karim Abdul-Jabbar and rookie John Avery. Abdul-Jabbar had 164 carries and Avery just 51 in the first eight games.

    "John is going to play more," Johnson said. "I want to utilize his big-play capability. Karim has been steady, but I want to use everything we've got."

    Abdul-Jabbar rushed for 97 yards at Buffalo, but he lacks the breakaway ability of Avery, who flashed his speed on a 55-yard kickoff return.

    "The coaches know I can help this team," Avery said. "They're just putting me in a position to help a little more."

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