Dolphins Pro Bowler reveals injury

Jan. 3, 2002 at 3:10 PM
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MIAMI, Jan. 3 (UPI) -- Miami Dolphins Pro Bowl middle linebacker Zach

Thomas, one of the most tenacious players in the game, Thursday revealed that he is suffering from a slight tear to the rotator cuff in his right shoulder.

Thomas is listed as probable for Sunday's regular-season finale with the Buffalo Bills and told the South Florida Sun-Sentinel that he likely will play. But the 5-11, 235-pound linebacker admitted to being hampered by the injury.

Thomas believes he suffered the tear against Atlanta last Sunday on the play in which Falcons quarterback Michael Vick scrambled around and then hit Brian Finneran on a 52-yard pass.

"I jumped at him and I hit his heels and I landed on my arm instead of landing on my body and that's when I felt it," Thomas said.

"For a couple of plays after that I still felt it but it went away so that was a good sign. Now all the blood and everything and soreness has built up. I can't even hardly move it. But I

should be all right. I played the rest of the game with it. I've just got to make sure it doesn't get in the way where I hurt something else trying to protect it."

Thomas is coming off a game that earned him AFC defensive player of the week honors. He had 18 tackles, including a pair of sacks, in the Dolphins' 21-14 win over Atlanta. He has tied his

career best with 180 tackles this season.

Miami already has clinched a playoff berth and can win the AFC East with a win Sunday and loss by New England.

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