The Buffalo Bills are 7-3 after overcoming a blizzard last week. The Bills had to play their home game against the Browns in Detroit, and they are back in the Motor City for Thanksgiving. More injuries piled up, as several starters will be out once again. Fortunately, Josh Allen’s elbow appears to be on the mend.
Unfortunately, as for the return of CB Tre’Davious White, McDermott left some clues that Tre might be dealing with some mental hurdles. These may be delaying his return, but he is currently still hovering around the average return to play after an ACL reconstruction.
As for players on the reserve lists, G Ike Boettger (PUP list, Achilles) and WR Marquez Stevenson (IR, Foot) have been performing on-field drills recently. WR Jake Kumerow was added to the IR last week, which mean he will miss the next three games at minimum. Meanwhile, S Micah Hyde and OT Tommy Doyle are likely on the season-ending IR. There is no clarity on the long-term status of WR Jamison Crowder, but it appears his season will be over as he remains on the IR too.
As for the Detroit Lions, they are dealing with plenty of injuries. Notably on the IR are DT Levi Onwuzurike and S Tracy Walker III. Their 2022 first round pick, WR Jameson Williams, was activated front the NFI-R, but is unlikely to play as he just started his 21-day practice window. CB Jeff Okudah, OG Evan Brown, DE Charles Harris, OG Jonah Jackson, and DE John Paschal are out for today’s game.
DE Gregory Rousseau
Groot suffered an ‘ankle’ sprain three weeks ago during the Jets game. It is a high-ankle sprain which will likely cost him multiple weeks. For context, DT Ed Oliver and WR Jake Kumerow both missed three games for the same injury this season. These injuries usually carry around a four-week recovery. I would expect Groot back after Thanksgiving for Week 13 or 14. However, Groot did not practice every day for the last three weeks, so Week 14 is more likely.
LB Tremaine Edmunds
Edmunds first landed on the injury list after the Packers game with a ‘heel’ injury. He played 100% of the defensive snaps. After playing 100% of the snaps again against the Jets, he was listed with a ‘heel’ and a ‘groin’. His groin was aggravated the next game against the Vikings, causing Tremaine to miss the second half. He has missed all practices the past two weeks and will miss his second straight game on Thanksgiving. Tremaine also missed Week 5 with a hamstring injury. Best case scenario, Tremaine is dealing with a minor groin strain and a heel bruise/contusion. However, he could be dealing with more nagging and long-term issues such as plantar fasciitis in the ‘heel’, and possibly a hip labrum/sports hernia for the ‘groin’.
DE A.J. Epenesa
Epenesa left the Browns game early last week with an ‘ankle’ injury. He only was able to play an 8% snap share after having his second-highest total of his career the prior week (60%). There is no noticeable injury available, albeit likely a sprain. He was reported to be in a walking boot after the game and did not practice all week. The Buffalo Bills still listed him as doubtful, which does give hope for next week. Will be interesting to see how he progresses, especially with Groot still out with his high-ankle sprain.
C Mitch Morse
Morse has been dealing with an ‘elbow’ injury all year that was sustained back in Week 2 against the Titans. He subsequently missed the following game against the Dolphins. Since then, Morse has been listed with that ailment each week but has played in the last seven games. Unfortunately, Morse sustained an ‘ankle’ injury in the Browns game. It was on the first play, but he was able to play every snap of the game. He was, reportedly, in a walking boot after the game and missed every practice this week. Although he is surprisingly listed as questionable, he is unlikely to play. He sustained a lateral ankle sprain on his right leg, which generally take 1-2 weeks to recover. The short week is a killer here.
QB Josh Allen
Josh Allen suffered an ‘elbow’ sprain on the third to last play of the Jets game. However, he was still able to haul a 70-yard rope to Gabe Davis two plays later. The injury has is widely believed to be a UCL injury, which is the ‘Tommy John’ ligament.
This is the same injury that Allen sustained during his rookie year in 2018. The injury in 2018 caused Allen to miss four games (five weeks with the Buffalo Bills bye).
Fortunately, Allen was able to return to the lineup without missing any time. He appeared mostly himself physically during the Vikings and Browns games. Allen was seen without his brace in practice this week, but he was still listed as limited every day. It will be interesting to see if the brace stays off on Thanksgiving. The Bills dodged a bullet with this one, and it is just another example of the injury resilience of Josh Allen.
S Jordan Poyer
Poyer has been ailing all year. He suffered a reported ‘hyperextended elbow’ in camp on August 2nd. Poyer was able to make it back for the Buffalo Bills’ season opener but has missed two games for a foot sprain and a pneumothorax. He played in his first game without an elbow brace against the Packers and reinjured himself. He did not hyperextend his elbow, but nonetheless appears to have suffered a moderate elbow sprain. Poyer subsequently missed two more games after the reinjury to the elbow.
Poyer played every snap last week. He practiced fully every day this week and is locked in for Thanksgiving.
CB Kaiir Elam
Elam injured his ‘ankle’ against the Jets but was able to return to the game. He practiced in a limited fashion on the Wednesday before the Vikings game but was oddly downgraded to DNP on Thursday and Friday. He has since missed Buffalo’s last two games. Elam practiced in full this entire week and will be available on Thanksgiving. As for his injury, he was either dealing with the remnants of the injury from the Jets game or tweaked it again in practice on that following Wednesday. It is likely a mild to moderate sprain.
S Damar Hamlin
Hamlin played 100% of snaps against the Browns but was listed with a ‘neck’ injury this week. The issue is unclear, possibly a muscle strain, as he was able to practice in full all week. He will be available for the Buffalo Bills today.
CB Cam Lewis
Lewis is still listed with a ‘forearm’ ailment that has trailed him all year. It is a head scratcher because he has been dealing with it since before he even played in his first game this year. He practiced in full this week and should continue with his special teams niche. He has played almost 50% of Buffalo’s special teams snaps this year.
OL David Quessenberry
Quessenberry was also reported to be in a boot after the Browns game. He only played special teams snaps, so his ‘ankle’ injury flew under the radar. Quessenberry practiced in full twice this week and will be available. He likely sustained a minor sprain.
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