Parker was listed as a full participant in Dolphins practice Thursday for the first time since Aug. 12, when he broke the middle finger on his right hand in practice. Parker said his finger "bent the other direction" as it got caught in a pair of shoulder pads while he was trying to make a catch.
"He seems fine," coach Adam Gase said. "He's itching to play. We went through today, got him involved in team reps. Now, it's just me going to ask Kyle [Johnston, Dolphins head trainer] what the reaction was. He hasn't complained about anything. He's been aggressive to get out there and catch as many balls as possible. Running wise, he's good. He's good."
Parker said he feels no pain and doesn't have to catch the ball differently despite wearing a pad that tapes his index and middle fingers together during practice. Parker said he plans to wear the pad if he plays Sunday to "secure it, to help it feel right."
"I know when he tells me that, he's ready to go and he wants to go," Gase said. "When he's that emphatic about it, that's a good sign for us.".
Parker, a 2015 first-round pick by the Dolphins, has shown plenty of potential throughout his career, but injuries have taken center stage in his first three-plus NFL seasons. He had 57 catches for 670 yards and one touchdown.
"Everything happens for a reason," said Parker, who indicated he wasn't close to playing last week vs. the Tennessee Titans. "Unfortunately, it always happens to me. But I'm ready to get back out there with my teammates."
When Parker returns, expect the Dolphins to have him rotate with Albert Wilson, Danny Amendola and Jakeem Grant as he readjusts to the flow of the offense. Kenny Stills should continue to start on the opposite side.
The 6-foot-3, 216-pound Parker is, by far, the Dolphins' biggest and tallest contributing receiver. That alone is a big asset for the Dolphins' versatile offense.
"We've seen what DeVante can do over the years. I think he's obviously a big, strong, physical target," quarterback Ryan Tannehill said. "Any time he's in the game, you feel good about having a physical, strong target at the 'X' spot that can go up and make plays for you."
Added Gase: "He's about a foot taller than everybody else. He's a big guy that has really good long speed and has good quickness in and out of his breaks. He has an unusual skill set for a guy that size. The times that have been really good with him in games, he can make some freakish plays. It'll be good to kind of get him going again. Really, it's a start-over for him. Whatever happened before he was injured, it's really behind him."