For what was expected to be one of the best games early in the NFL schedule turned out to be halfway true. Through the first quarter and part of the second, the Buffalo Bills and Miami Dolphins traded punches as each found the end zone early and often. However, the Bills began to pressure Tua Tagovailoa and capitalize on mistakes including one interception and forcing four fumbles, recovering one.
Once the Bills figured out the Dolphins, they began to increase the lead, never letting their foot off the gas pedal. The closest the Dolphins got was an 11-yard touchdown from Braxton Berrios midway through the third quarter that decreased the deficit to 11 points but never got closer after that.
Even though the Bills dominated 48-20, they still suffered many injuries of varying severity throughout the day including a season-ending injury to Tre’Davious White.
Read all the injury concerns coming out of Sunday’s win and outlook moving forward.
CB Christian Benford (Right Shoulder)
Benford was the first injury of the day when he went down with a right shoulder injury early in the second quarter. His injury was the result of a hit by Raheem Mostert as Benford squared up to take him down.
Though Benford took Mosert down, he stayed down grabbing his right elbow. The broadcast showed the team working on his right shoulder before he slowly walked off and towards the tunnel. He was officially questionable to return with a shoulder injury and underwent x-rays in the locker room.
He later returned to the sidelines though was called back to play once Tre’Davious White went down with his own injury. Benford was able to finish the game but was likely not 100 percent. In the limited film, I did see on Benford, he did not have any bracing or sleeves on the area. While it is positive that he did return, I expect him to be on the injury report with additional details coming shortly.
He is officially day-to-day but lacking injury specifics.
CB Deonte Harty (Concussion Check)
Harty had to briefly leave the game after a hit to the right side of his helmet on a punt return as seen below.
He immediately knew that something was not right and went down to the turf for several moments before the training staff walked off with him. He underwent a concussion check and returned for the final punt of the first half, finishing the game.
WR Khalil Shakir (Concussion check/left hamstring)
Shakir also left the game briefly due to a concussion check after hitting his head on the turf after trying to haul in a deep pass from Josh Allen right after the two-minute warning.
Shakir was able to return later in the game indicating a clearance of his head injury, but in the video, he can be seen grabbing his left hamstring area. When he was falling, he landed on his left leg and fell down, potentially injuring the hamstring in addition to hitting his head.
He did have a left hamstring injury in college back in 2020 but managed to stay fairly healthy otherwise, save for a rib injury during the preseason. While the Monday press conference did not note him as a concern moving forward, he may appear on the injury report come Wednesday.
DT Ed Oliver (Right leg)
Oliver briefly required medical attention from the training staff after getting hit in what appeared to be the right shin/knee area. He was slowed down briefly and stopped once the play was done before sitting down, requiring Jordan Phillips to wave the training staff onto the field.
It wasn’t exactly clear what injury he suffered, but he jogged off. He later returned and continued to dominate the remainder of the game. This may be a more hurt than injured issue, but something to note coming out of the game.
CB Tre’Davious White (Right Achilles)
Tre’Davious White has been ruled out for the remainder of the 2023 season and is looking towards returning in 2024. To better understand his injury, click the link here for further details.
CB Taron Johnson (Left leg)
Immediately after Tre’Davious White went down, Taron Johnson had a scare of his own trying to chase down Jaylen Waddle on a run out to the right. He began to lose his balance before taking several additional steps and then going down. Immediately after Johnson went down, trainers began assessing his left leg stretching what appeared to be the left calf and hamstring area.
He did not receive any game designation from the training staff and how they were stretching him indicates cramps. Later on, following the game, he was seen walking without any restrictions up the tunnel.
Despite the convincing win over the Dolphins, the mood has been dampened by the loss of Tre’Davious White. The team must move forward without him once more as they did in 2021. With the potential return of Von Miller off PUP as he is scheduled to begin practice this week, this may be the one-for-one transaction the Bills need to do to avoid cutting anyone else.
Miller would have to be activated to the roster for this to happen, but the team does not have to make this decision until the end of the week. Even if they do this, they could make him inactive and elevate someone such as Ja’Marcus Ingram from the practice squad. They could also outright sign Ingram to the roster and deal with the Miller transaction later.
Remember, this team went 13-3 and made the divisional round of the playoffs despite all the injuries they sustained last year. This team is still supremely talented and withstand the loss of a player or two, it has proven this. But this does prevent the Bills from fielding the best possible team every week.
The Bills head to London to play the Jacksonville Jaguars next week in another crucial AFC matchup in Week 5. We will see how this week plays out in the coming days.
Top Photo Credit: Getty Images