Mike McDaniel says Brandon Jones sustained season-ending ACL injury vs. Pittsburgh Steelers

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Rich Storry-USA TODAY Sports

The Miami Dolphins have lost a key starter in their secondary for the remainder of the 2022 season, as safety Brandon Jones suffered an ACL injury in the team’s win over the Pittsburgh Steelers in Week 7.

Jones issued a message on Twitter after head coach Mike McDaniel revealed the unfortunate news.

Losing Jones will force the Dolphins to turn to Eric Rowe or Clayton Fejedelem at safety alongside Jevon Holland. Rowe and Fejedelem are listed as Jones’ backups on the team’s official depth chart.

Rowe, who is in his fourth season with Miami, has appeared in six games this season for the Dolphins, making 20 combined tackles. He will likely get the first shot at replacing Jones given his experience in the NFL (92 games and 50 starts).

A third-round pick in the 2020 NFL Draft, Jones was having a solid season before suffering the injury. Through seven games, he racked up 49 combined tackles, two sacks, one tackle for loss, three passes defended and one forced fumble.

Jones seized a starting role for the Dolphins during the 2021 season, starting 13 of the 15 games that he appeared in.

Miami has a ton of injuries in its secondary, and it’s led to a bit of a down year for the team defensively.

The Dolphins’ pass defense has not been great this season, ranking sixth in the NFL in yards allowed (1,786) and 10th in touchdowns allowed (11).

Now that the team has lost Jones, McDaniel and the Dolphins are hoping that Rowe can rival the young safety’s production. In his NFL career, Rowe has five interceptions, 39 passes defended and three tackles for loss.

Miami could also look to add a safety in the trade market ahead of the NFL’s trade deadline on Nov. 1.

The Dolphins are currently 4-3 in the 2022 season after beating Pittsburgh on Sunday Night Football in Week 7. Miami still is behind the Buffalo Bills and New York Jets in the AFC East division.

Miami’s first test without Jones will come in Week 8 against the Detroit Lions and Jared Goff.

The team doesn’t face an elite quarterback over the next three games leading into its bye with Goff and the Lions, Justin Fields and the Chicago Bears and Jacoby Brissett and the Cleveland Browns up next on the schedule.

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Peter is a graduate of Quinnipiac University where he covered the MAAC and college basketball for three years. He has worked for NBC Sports, the Connecticut Sun and the Meriden Record-Journal covering basketball and other major sports. Follow him on Twitter @peterdewey2.