DAVIE (CBSMiami) – The Miami Dolphins running game has been a major strength of the team this season.

Following a very rough 2013 in which the Dolphins had a lot of trouble moving the ball on the ground, the run attack has been a consistent source of production so far this year.

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Miami currently ranks sixth in the league in rushing, averaging 142.2 yards per game on the ground.

That comes despite the Dolphins being without perhaps their best running back for the last two-plus games after Knowshon Moreno went down with a dislocated elbow during the first quarter of their Week 2 loss in Buffalo.

Moreno said on Wednesday that he expects to miss four more weeks, setting him up for a Week 9 return when the Dolphins host the San Diego Chargers on November 2nd.

That news would be much more troubling to Dolphins fans if Lamar Miller wasn’t playing the best football of his young career.

Through four games this season, Miller has racked up 277 rushing yards and a pair of touchdowns while averaging an impressive 5.7 yards per carry.  He’s also hauled in 12 receptions for 53 yards and a receiving touchdown.

Compare that to a season ago when Miller rushed for a total of 709 yards, averaging 4.0 yards per carry, and two total touchdowns.

He had one 100-yard game in 2013; he’s already got one this season.

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Miami has also gotten solid contributions from their reserve backs.

When Moreno went down with the elbow injury the Dolphins brought back former second round pick Daniel Thomas, who was part of the team’s final roster cuts.

Thomas has looked extremely good in his limited work, racking up 50 yards on seven carries (7.1 yards per run) while adding two receptions and another 46 receiving yards.

Reserve back Damien Williams has shown flashes of his dominant days in Oklahoma when called upon while Orleans Darkwa, known as a receiving back, picked up three catches for 31 yards when playing towards the end of the loss in Buffalo.

As if there wasn’t enough positivity in the Dolphins’ running back room, the team signed former collegiate star LaMichael James to the practice squad on Monday.  While attending the University of Oregon, James led the nation in rushing in 2010, picking up 1,682 yards and finishing third in balloting for the Heisman Trophy.

He followed that up with an even more impressive 2011, rushing for a school-record 1,805 yards.  When he left Oregon, James had racked up over 5,000 yards and was 14th on the NCAA’s all-time rushing list.

San Francisco selected James in the second round (61st overall) in the 2012 NFL Draft.  He was utilized mostly as a kick and punt returner during his brief time with the 49ers, a role he may end up taking on with the Dolphins.

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