It was an image that perfectly sums up the collective mood _ and health _ of the Miami Dolphins these days.
Not only did the Dolphins lose 16-0 to the Chicago Bears on Thursday night, they lost two more starters. Marshall, the team’s top receiver and on pace for the biggest year by a Miami wideout ever, left in the second quarter with an injured right hamstring. And Cory Procter, who started at center, left 6 minutes into the game with what appeared to be a serious injury to his lower left leg.
Those woes came four days after the Dolphins lost Pennington for the season after just one throw Sunday against Tennessee, and later in that Titans game, starter-turned-backup Chad Henne departed with a left knee injury.
Adding insult to the injuries for Miami on Thursday was this: The Bears had nothing to do with either malady.
Procter was moving downfield when his leg suddenly gave out and caused him to crumble to the grass, where he remained for several minutes before needing help just to reach the sideline.
Marshall was twisting after making a catch near midfield shortly before halftime, and seemed to be reaching for the back of his leg even before hitting the ground. He was added to Miami’s injury report on Wednesday with a hamstring problem.
When he returned, he was in street clothes, grabbing a spot next to Pennington on the sideline. Marshall tried clapping a couple times, though by night’s end, he was just about the only person in Miami colors who found much reason to cheer about anything.
Miami also was without center Joe Berger (knee) and safety Chris Clemons (hamstring) on Thursday night. So losing Procter was significant, in that Richie Incognito _ the third-string center _ was pressed into duty.
The Dolphins were shut out at home for the second time in the last 40 years, and dropped 2 1/2 games behind New England and the New York Jets _ teams that have already beaten Miami once _ in the AFC East. By night’s end, the Dolphins were 5-5, with the 10th-best record in the AFC.