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Miami Dolphins Promote WR Julius Pruitt with Brandon Marshall Out vs. Raiders

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Miami Dolphins Promote WR Julius Pruitt with Brandon Marshall Out vs. Raiders
Second-year receiver Julius Pruitt could make his NFL debut tomorrow in Oakland.

With Brandon Marshall unlikely to play Sunday against the Raiders with a hamstring injury, the Miami Dolphins have promoted second-year wide receiver Julius Pruitt from the practice squad to the active roster.

As of yet, there is no word on who was waived to clear a roster spot for Pruitt.

Originally signed as an undrafted free agent out of Oauchita Baptist in September 2009, Pruitt spent his entire rookie season on the Dolphins' practice squad.

The Dolphins brought Pruitt back on a future contract on Jan. 5, where he was able to hold off the likes of Ryan Grice-Mullen and Taurus Johnson for a spot on the team's practice squad in 2010 after catching three passes for 31 yards in the preseason.

Pruitt, who will wear No. 11 for the Dolphins as he has since originally joining the team, likely received a one-year contract worth a prorated $320,000 minimum salary as a result of his promotion.

The Dolphins face the Raiders in Oakland at 4 p.m. ET on Sunday.


Analysis

There had been speculation Pruitt would be promoted this week due to Marshall's injury, but yesterday's release of defensive end Clifton Geathers actually resulted in the promotion of another defensive lineman in nose tackle Chris Baker.

With Pruitt now also earning a promotion, it's still unclear who was waived to make room for him. Possibilities include another receiver like Marlon Moore; a tight end like Mickey Shuler, linebacker Austin Spitler, or safety Jonathon Amaya.

Less likely options could be Brandon Marshall heading to injured reserve, whose injury doesn't appear serious enough for that, or the release of quarterback Patrick Ramsey, who won't be as needed if Chad Henne is truly healthy enough to start.

It's a bit surprising to see Pruitt activated despite Marshall's injury, as the Dolphins usually only have four receivers active on game days and they already had four healthy ones available excluding Marshall.

By being activated the Saturday before a game, it seems almost guaranteed Pruitt will be active and dressed Sunday, which means he may have leapfrogged undrafted rookie Marlon Moore.

Moore has been outplayed by fellow undrafted rookie Roberto Wallace on special teams this season and has only appeared in four games this season. He made his first two NFL receptions last week against the Chicago Bears.

It's also possible the Dolphins could dress all five receivers, with Pruitt taking the 45-man active spot of a special teams player (possibly the one cut to make room for him).

If Pruitt does dress Sunday, he'll likely focus on special teams. However, it's possible he could get a look in four-wide sets with Roberto Wallace taking on a bigger role in Marshall's absence.

Pruitt's an intriguing small-school prospect with good size (6-2, 206) and 4.3 speed, but he's obviously a raw prospect and doesn't offer much upside.

As always, check out the updated projected depth chart reflecting these transactions here.


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