This is Part 1 of the Buffalo Bills training camp preview revisiting injuries from 2019 & the impact it may have on their performance and availability in 2020. Part 1 consists of the quarterback room.
QB Josh Allen
16 games, 16 starts, 461 attempts, 271 completions, 58.8%, 3089 yards, 20 TD’s, 9 INT’s, 38 sacks, 5 GWD, 109 attempts, 510 yards, 9 TD’s
Allen had several small injuries during the 2019 season that did not force him to miss any games but did at times put his availability into question. As the stat line above shows, he was able to grow as a passer during his second year at the helm. Unlike 2018 where he missed a chunk of time due to his elbow injury which allowed him to learn the game, 2019 was his time to input all that he had learned into both individual and team success.
Injury wise, Allen suffered a concussion during the Week 4 loss to the Patriots in where he was hit by Patriots CB Jonathan Jones. He was hit on the crown of the head on the left side before going down to the turf. He was evaluated in the blue tent and then sent to the locker room for further testing. He missed the rest of the game and was questionable for the following week, clearing concussion protocol in time for Week 5.
- Left-Hand Injury
Other injuries included a left-hand injury the following week against the Titans. This was the result of his left hand hitting Titans LB Harold Landry III on the follow-through, appearing to injury the metacarpophalangeal joint in the thumb region. He had the bye week to recover and did appear on the injury report prior to the Miami game, but it was not an issue moving forward.
- Left ankle
Allen suffered a left ankle sprain during the loss to the Ravens in which he was taken down by friendly fire in having C Mitch Morse step on the foot/ankle area attempting to keep the pocket clean. Allen had it wrapped and quickly returned to the game, not appearing to let it bother him the rest of the game or next week.
- Right ankle
The final injury of 2019 was a right ankle complaint noted following the playoff loss. Allen was spotted walking across the fieldhouse with an ankle brace on indicating there may have been an issue. There wasn’t any specific incident where he injured his ankle but is always concerning when the face of the franchise is dealing with an injury.
Allen certainly took his share of shots throughout 2019. As he develops as a quarterback and his offensive line continues to gel, this could hopefully reduce his need to extend plays and reduce injuries.
QB Matt Barkley
2 games, 51 attempts, 27 completions, 52.9% 0 TD’s, 3 INT’s, 2 sacks, 2 rushing attempts, -4 yards
Barkley’s stat line is not impressive which is a good thing when you consider his job is to strictly hold a clipboard and only play in emergencies. Fortunately, he did not suffer any known injuries and returns in 2020 as a veteran backup whose main job is to help prepare Josh Allen & be ready in the event of injury.
QB Davis Webb
Webb has not seen any NFL action since entering the league as a 3rd round draft pick of the New York Giants. He was signed by the Giants and then cut, getting picked up by the New York Jets before sitting on the practice squad for most of 2018, briefly getting called up but not seeing any action.
In 2019, the Bills signed him to the practice squad following the cut down day prior to the regular season. He sat on the practice squad all season, helping prepare Josh Allen every week despite not seeing the field.
New to the roster
QB Jake Fromm
The 2020 5th round draft pick comes to Buffalo via Georgia viewed more of a developmental player with the possibility to improve into a quality backup player in the coming years. Fromm’s known medical history is scant, detailed here at Buffalo Rumblings.
Allen returns incredibly healthy and will be the reason the team either succeeds or fails with him at the helm. Injury wise, the only concern he has is the concussion which appeared mild at best. Due to the documented concussion, he is at risk to suffer another one, but as long as he lets his offensive line do their job, the likelihood that he has to extend plays drops which in turn reduces his risk for injury.
Barkley will return as backup & the possibility of Fromm making the team as QB 3 isn’t impossible, but he would need a strong preseason to justify a spot on the 53 man roster. Webb still has a shot at the roster, but he may be once again relegated to the practice squad or finding a home elsewhere in the league if Fromm drops to the practice squad.
This position comes into the 2020 season very healthy & pretty set from a depth chart perspective. The only question will be whether Allen can take the next step towards becoming a franchise quarterback, leading the Bills to NFL glory