MIAMI (CBSMiami) – The Dolphins are now in game mode.

After two days of practices in Lake Forest, Illinois against the Bears, the team is ready for the first preseason game.

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Kickoff is Saturday at Soldier Field in Chicago at 1 p.m.

It’s the first of three preseason games for head coach Brian Flores’ team.

The battle for roster spots will go up a notch, with rookies and free agents trying to prove they belong.

Wide receiver Jaylen Waddle, the sixth overall pick in the draft, is expected to get a good amount of playing time.

Receivers Will Fuller, DeVante Parker, Preston Williams and Albert Wilson all have been out with injuries and missed the practices with the Bears. None are expected to play, giving Waddle and depth receivers like Mack Hollins more opportunity.

Quarterback Tua Tagovailoa is expected to start, and looks to build on his solid training camp performance.

Coach Brian Flores has been impressed with his quarterback’s off-season work and training camp performance.

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Backup QB Jacoby Brisett and third stringer Reid Sinnett are expected to get the bulk of the snaps.

On the defensive side, rookie DE Jaelan Phillips is questionable for the game. The first-round pick out of the University of Miami has missed most of training camp with injury.

Rookie safety Jevon Holland will be one to watch. He’s had a good training camp and has been running with the starters.

Holland was drafted on the second round out of Oregon.

This will be the first preseason game not only for the rookies, but for second-year players as well. There were no games last summer due to COVID.

After Saturday’s game, the Dolphins head back to South Florida where they’ll hold joint practices with Atlanta. The team will then host the Falcons next Saturday night at Hard Rock Stadium.

It’s the only home game of the preseason as the Dolphins travel to Cincinnati to end the three-game preseason schedule Aug. 29.

CBS4 is the official partner of the Miami Dolphins, where you can watch preseason action on TV, online and on the CBSMiami app.

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Steven "Goldie" Goldstein