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Dolphins aim to put best foot forward on Monday Night Football

DAVIE, Fla. -- Miami Dolphins defensive end Olivier Vernon knows this is not a typical week in the regular season.

"It's a Monday night game; that's all I needed to hear," an excited Vernon said. "Monday night games are static [electric] right there. Everybody wants to play a Monday night game."

Despite its inconsistent season, Miami (5-7) is aiming to put its best foot forward and showcase itself before a national audience when the team hosts the New York Giants at Sun Life Stadium. There will be many football fans around the country who will see the Dolphins for the first time this year.

"It is special because you know it is still a prime time game," head coach Dan Campbell said. "It's one of those [games] everybody can see. A lot of these guys, some of their family and friends, this will be their only chance to see the game. [Players] know that and they also know most NFL players will watch Monday Night Football when they're off. So everybody around the league, their peers, are watching too."

The Dolphins also will wear throwback jerseys celebrating their rich history. The team named its 50 greatest players throughout the season and that will culminate Monday.

Miami is 41-40 all time on Monday Night Football. No team has played more games on Monday night than the Dolphins. The Dallas Cowboys are second with 76 appearances.

Here are more notes from Thursday's practice:

  • Starting receiver Rishard Matthews (chest, ribs) did not practice. He missed last week's game, which opened the door for rookie first-round pick DeVante Parker to make his first start. Parker could be in line for his second career start. Several players also were given a "veterans day" off to rest, including starting center Mike Pouncey and left tackle Brandon Albert.

  • Defensive tackle Earl Mitchell return to practice, which is a promising sign for him. Mitchell missed last week's game with a calf injury.

  • Campbell said he's not concerned about receiver Jarvis Landry putting on a catching exhibition for fans with his friend Odell Beckham Jr. before Monday's game. "As long as they don't get hurt doing something stupid before the game, I don't have a problem with it," Campbell said. "If they want to put on a show, whatever gets Jarvis Landry ready to go before the game is fine with me."