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Dolphins’ Avery Strains Hamstring

July 26, 1998

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. (AP) _ John Avery, the Miami Dolphins’ first-round draft pick, went down with a strained right hamstring Sunday during an intrasquad scrimmage.

Avery carried only six times, collapsing in pain one play after he was stopped for a short gain.

Coach Jimmy Johnson, who has expressed worry about Avery’s durability while raving about his skill, said the 5-foot-9 scatback didn’t tear the hamstring and should return next week.

``I’m the smallest guy, so I always get a lot of bumps and bruises,″ said Avery, who was held to minus-6 yards. ``I pulled it earlier this week and I was trying to make things happen.″

The injury took place one day after the Dolphins cut controversial runner Lawrence Phillips, who had missed a team meeting Friday night.

Police are investigating allegations that Phillips hit a woman at a nightclub in suburban Plantation on June 27. A decision on whether charges will be filed could be made next week.

Nobody scored during Sunday’s scrimmage, which consisted of eight 12-play series matching the first three units.

The ground game, which finished next-to-last in the NFL last season, managed just 90 yards on 51 carries. Incumbent Karim Abdul-Jabbar, used sparingly, carried just four times for 18 yards.

Quarterback Dan Marino played just the first series and connected on 1-of-6 passes for 10 yards.

Third-year linebacker Zach Thomas starred on defense, compiling 10 tackles, two passes defensed and an interception.

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