The Buffalo Bills are 2-1 after losing a heartbreaker in Miami. The current injury list is long and alarming. Nevertheless, better health is on the horizon. Several key players are on the brink of return, and CB Tre’Davious White can be activated from the PUP list as early as next week. Also available to return from the PUP list next week is G Ike Boettger. Both players will likely utilize a 21-day practice window before being activated to the 53-man roster. Depending on when they are activated, they will likely return to action between Weeks 8-10. WR Marquez Stevenson is eligible to return from the IR as well, but likely needs until mid-November before he can return from his foot surgery. Unfortunately, two players were added to season-ending IR this past week, S Micah Hyde and OT Tommy Doyle. Their injuries are discussed below.
As for the Baltimore Ravens, they are dealing with a handful of ailments as well. The notable Ravens on the IR include LB David Ojabo, OT Ja’Wuan James, CB Kyle Fuller, RB Gus Edwards, LB Tyus Bowser, LB Steven Means, and DT Michael Pierce. Meanwhile, LB Justin Houston and OL Patrick Mekari are listed as ‘doubtful’. They could, however, get a major piece back in OT Ronnie Stanley. He is listed as ‘questionable’ and, if he plays, would take part in his first game since a season-ending ankle injury last year. To note, he has had back-to-back season ending ankle injuries the past two years, playing in only six and one games respectively in 2020 and 2021.
S Micah Hyde
Hyde will miss the rest of the 2022 season after a reported cervical disc herniation and will require surgery. The injury was sustained during the Titans game. He will look to return to the Buffalo Bills in 2023, but there should be major concerns about his longevity moving forward.
OT Tommy Doyle
Tommy Doyle tore his ACL last week against Miami. This will require a season-ending reconstruction. Tommy should be available for training camp next year, as July will mark 10 months post-surgery. It will be cutting it close though.
CB Christian Benford
After a promising start to the year for the 2022 sixth round pick, Benford broke his hand during the Miami game. He was able to come back in the second half for special teams with a club on his hand, but he still required surgery to fix. The specifics are unknown, but he likely fractured a metacarpal. If this is the case, he can return to play as early as two weeks (1). Look for Benford to return as early as the Week 6 matchup vs Chiefs.
DT Jordan Phillips
Phillips was off to a strong start in his reunion tour with the Buffalo Bills. However, he had a polarizing hamstring strain during the Milano pick-six during the Bills-Titans game. He was unable to practice the past two weeks. He will miss this week, but next week against the Steelers is a high possibility.
WR Jake Kumerow
Touchdown Jesus left the Miami game early with an ankle sprain. Unfortunately, it was the dreaded high-ankle type. This type of sprain can have a lot of variability on return to play, but generally they range from 2-4 weeks. Look for Kumerow to miss 1-3 games.
DT Ed Oliver
Ed Oliver exited the season opener early with an ankle sprain. He appeared to sustain a medial ankle sprain, but reports are surfacing that it was actually a high-ankle sprain.
It is odd the team would put him back in the Bills-Rams game, but not all high ankle sprains are equal. These injuries can range from 2-4 weeks. The key ligament is the anterior tibiofibular ligament. Depending on the amount of trauma to this ligament will impact the return to play significantly (2). At this point, Oliver is three weeks post-injury. He has been practicing in a limited fashion the past two weeks, but I don’t see him sitting out any longer.
CB Dane Jackson
Jackson needed to be spine boarded during the Bills-Titans game for a ‘neck’ injury. He luckily had no structural damage but was unable to practice at all last week. He was able to practice this week though, albeit limited, but Dane sounds like he is playing. This is a surprising, and welcomed, turn of events for the Buffalo Bills defense.
WR Gabe Davis
Davis sprained his ‘ankle’ in practice on the Saturday before the MNF game. He subsequently missed the Bills-Titans game. Davis returned for the Miami game and played a 96% snap share but looked to be favoring his ankle at times. Enter this week, and Davis sprained his ankle in practice on Wednesday again.
Davis missed Thursday’s practice but was able to return to practice on Friday in a limited fashion. If Davis is deciding, he will play Sunday.
S Jordan Poyer
Poyer was listed with a ‘foot’ injury after the Bills-Titans game. Last week, he was limited on Wednesday, didn’t practice on Thursday, and was limited again on Friday. He ultimately was inactive against Miami. McDermott has said that his injury occurred in the Titans game but is odd because he didn’t miss any time during that matchup. It has all the makings of a mild mid-foot sprain. I would expect Poyer to play this week.
TE Dawson Knox
Knox was on the injury report last week with a ‘foot’ ailment, but this week he was limited all week with a ‘back/hip’ injury. He never left the Bills-Dolphins game, but likely suffered a substantial booty contusion when he got decleated by the habitual nut squeezer DT Christian Wilkins.
C Mitch Morse
Morse was injured on the first series of the Bills-Titans game. He appeared to get his ‘elbow’ hyperextended as he was engaged with a defender and Knox’s helmet hit the back of his elbow. He was able to return to the game but was unable to play at Miami. The problem is that it is his snapping arm, which might result in a weak grip from the injury. I don’t see him missing another week, as elbow injuries are usually quick to return to play with. Morse was limited in practice for the past two weeks, but I see him coming back for this matchup.
OL Justin Murray
The Buffalo Bills are out signing injured players too. Murray was released from the Cardinals with an injury settlement for an ‘ankle’ injury at the end of August. He was signed by Buffalo this week and is listed with a ‘foot’ injury after he was limited in practice all week. Not clear on what he is dealing with but likely best he sits this week out.
OG Ryan Bates
Bates exited the Miami game late with a ‘concussion’. He has efficiently passed through the concussion protocol and will be active this week, finishing the Friday practice as a full participant.
CB Cam Lewis
Lewis was listed with a ‘forearm/knee’ on the injury reportbefore he even dressed for a game. Possibly a practice injury, he was still able to practice all week in full last week. He played this past week against Miami and now he needed two days of limited participation, before eventually finishing the week a full participant.
OT Dion Dawkins
Dawkins missed Wednesday’s practice with an ‘illness’. He was able to return to practice fully on Thursday and Friday. Based on his IG, he is feeling good.
Not Listed (but still hurt)
CB Xavier Rhodes
The Buffalo Bills just signed Rhodes to the practice squad this week. He managed to strain his ‘hamstring’ in his second practice. This will likely set him back about two weeks, fortunately it sounds minor. Great time to catch up on the playbook!
1. Fufa DT, Goldfarb CA. Fractures of the thumb and finger metacarpals in athletes. Hand Clin. 2012; 3: 379–88. doi: 10.1016/j.hcl.2012.05.028.
2. Miller BS, Downie BK, Johnson PD, Schmidt PW, Nordwall SJ, Kijek TG, Jacobson JA, Carpenter JE. Time to return to play after high ankle sprains in collegiate football players: a prediction model. Sports Health. 2012 Nov; 4(6): 504-9. doi: 10.1177/1941738111434916. PMID: 24179590; PMCID: PMC3497944.
Featured Image: AP Photo/Brett Carlsen