CB Tim Harris Injury Profile

Tim Harris

Position: CB
Height/Weight: 6’1″/205 lbs.
College: Virginia
Year joined Bills:
2021
Acquired: Free Agency via 49ers

College Injuries:

2015:

Shoulder injury, missed 2 games, possible labral tear.

2016:

Shoulder injury, missed 10 games, possible labrum surgery.

2017:

Season ending wrist injury, missed 12 games.

Pro Injuries:

2019 49ers:

Groin injury, preseason, went to IR for the season.

2020 49ers:

Undisclosed injury, practice squad injured list on 9/16, off on 10/7.

2021 49ers:

Groin injury, preseason, released with injury settlement.

General links:

RB Kerrith Whyte Injury Profile

Kerrith Whyte

Position: RB
Height/Weight: 5’10″/200 lbs.
College: Florida Atlantic
Year joined Bills: 2021
Acquired: Free Agency via Lions

College Injuries:

No publicly reported injuries.

Pro Injuries:

2019 Bears/Steelers:

No publicly reported injuries.

2020 Steelers/Lions:

Groin injury, preseason, released following cut down day.

Unspecified injury, went to practice squad injured reserve.

General links:

Buffalo Bills Preseason Game 2 Injury Review- Chicago Bears

Despite a thorough beatdown of the Chicago Bears at Soldier Field Saturday, the Buffalo Bills came away with numerous injuries of varying concern. This is a strong reminder why starters should not play as this game did not matter and it could have had very real consequences that affected the season. Fortunately, none of these injuries are season-ending nor should they miss significant time. Below are all the injuries from Saturday’s game and updates following Sunday’s practice.

In-game injuries:

Harrison Phillips (left knee)

Phillips went down with a left knee injury with 9:49 in the 1st quarter as he got trapped between two Bears offensive lineman, getting tripped forward as he went down hard on his left knee. During the fall, his helmet got knocked off and as he got up to return to the play. While trying to get back into the play, he hopped over to the scrum, briefly grabbing his left knee. 

He managed to play the next two snaps before exiting to have the training staff assess his left knee. At one point during the broadcast, they had removed the hinge bracing he has been known to wear under his pads to further assess. He was initially questionable before being ruled out, though at times observed walking around on the sidelines. 

I had initially thought he had suffered a contusion to the area due to not being able to brace his fall as his knee as it hit the ground. However, during Sunday’s press conference prior to practice, it was announced that Phillips was week-to-week and that it would be a little bit of time. This is one of these cases where the injury is more severe than what was initially perceived.

Considering the mechanism of the injury in how he landed directly on the knee, possibilities include bone bruise, patella subluxation, or PCL sprain.

The bone bruise is an option simply because he landed so hard on the turf along with a Bears offensive lineman landing on him. However, it wasn’t reported that he had to leave for the locker room and I believe he would be in greater pain, unable to walk freely. These timelines can widely vary and would require MRI imaging to get a further look. I would think they wouldn’t be as forthright in their timeline if this were the case. 

Another possibility could be a patellar subluxation. This could also occur due to the direct blow to the knee, especially with the knee bent into flexion. The patella could have partially slid out laterally and popped back on when he extended his knee. We did see Chiefs QB Patrick Mahomes deal with a similar injury several years ago and return in a few weeks, but I’m not certain that this is the injury.

A likely injury could be a posterior cruciate ligament injury, the ligament that runs the opposite direction of the ACL. While the ACL tear is a serious injury and season ending, as Phillips has suffered twice in the left knee, the PCL is thicker and more resilient. This ligament prevents the tibia from sliding backwards under the femur and also prevents hyperextension, internal rotation, adduction, and abduction of the knee joint.

Considering he fell directly onto the knee with his foot pointed down and had the Bears offensive lineman fall on top of him, he could have hit with enough force to sprain the ligament. This injury is typically seen in motor vehicle accidents where the knee hits the dashboard, pushing the knee backwards. 

They did remove his brace to likely perform all the special tests to assess the knee including the posterior drawer test for the PCL, but they would be checking the knee to do their due diligence. 

PCL Anatomy. Credit: vishalpai.com.au

Whether it is a bone bruise, patellar subluxation, or PCL sprain, all take several weeks to fully recover from. The best case scenario is the PCL injury and it heals on his own. I also believe this to be the case based on the information we currently have. If it is indeed the PCL, this carries a 2-to-4 week timeframe but has overall excellent outcomes with proper rehab as it can heal quickly. This fits the timeline set forth by the team and would also fit what NFL reporter Ian Rapoport stated in that it was a minor injury. 

The one benefit is that he has time to rest during training camp and be closer to 100 percent for the regular season. I would expect the team gets an MRI for further confirmation, but testing for this injury is fairly accurate from a physical examination. It’s fortunate that Phillips avoided yet another serious knee injury.

Dane Jackson (stinger)

Jackson quietly left the game Saturday and it was announced that he suffered a stinger, ending his day. Looking back at the film, it’s not apparent when he suffered the injury, but the best guess is when he tackled tight end Jesse James with 2:48 left in the 1st quarter. 

It was a fairly routine tackle, hitting him with his right shoulder and taking him down. Jackson stayed in several more plays up until the end of the 1st quarter and did not return. He also wasn’t physically involved in any remaining plays from what could be seen on broadcast. Either that was the hit that caused the stinger or it occurred out of the view of the camera. 

We have seen how Antonio Williams’ stinger has been handled this past week, though each stinger is unique in presentation. It’s too soon to tell if he will play Saturday against the Packers, but the hope is that this is an isolated event and not a recurring issue. 

Spencer Brown (left knee)

Brown’s exit was reported much later than his actual exit, but it appears that his knee injury occurred to the left side. This occurred when he was knocked down from behind on the Zack Moss touchdown run that wasn’t with 12:12 left in the 2nd quarter. 

Brown did stay in the rest of the series until the two-point conversion following the Reggie Gilliam touchdown, but he did not come back out after and was replaced by Bobby Hart.

The play at 12:12 was the only time where it appeared that he did injure himself, though far from certain. Head coach Sean McDermott noted that the injuries weren’t severe and Brown would only miss a few days. Whether it’s a general contusion as one Twitter user noted that Brown had ice on his left knee or something more such as a minor MCL sprain, it appears he avoided serious injury. 

Justin Zimmer (right elbow)

Zimmer briefly left the game with 9:29 left in the 3rd quarter after his right elbow got struck trying to tackle the Bears running back. He immediately grabbed his elbow in obvious discomfort, eventually getting checked out on the sidelines. 

Based on the video, it appears he struck his ulnar nerve at some point, another term for hitting the funny bone. He returned shortly after and did not appear to suffer any ill effects of the injury. This is not something that typically lingers and is more pain limiting in the moment than anything. He typically does wear bracing on that elbow, possibly reducing the severity of the injury, but it certainly didn’t hurt having it either.

Cam Lewis (cramping)

Lewis went down shortly after Justin Zimmer with what appeared to be cramps in his legs. Trainers quickly tended to him, placing his feet into dorsiflexion to stretch the calves. He briefly exited but returned and did not have any further complications. 

Marquez Stevenson (right foot)

Despite dazzling on special teams with a punt returned for a touchdown early in the 3rd quarter, Stevenson left immediately afterward with trainers to head into the locker room. He walked without his right shoe on and prior to that was observed having training staff look at his foot/ankle area on the sidelines. 

I had initially thought he injured his foot on the punt return as he did stumble briefly around the goal line, but looking back several plays before possibly revealed the true injury. With 11:38 left in the 3rd quarter, Stevenson went out to his right for a pass that he could not secure, getting tackled by a Bears defender, tackling him low and catching the forefoot in the turf and bending the foot forward. 

There’s a possibility this could be a turf toe injury, however it appears to be more of a midfoot sprain. This is due to how the foot turned inward with the top of the foot getting caught more than the great toe. The team initially classified it a foot/ankle injury before later classifying it as a foot. What’s interesting is that the team announced that x-rays were negative which is not something I recall them doing before for injuries in game. 

Stevenson was later seen in a walking boot and no updates had been made regarding his status. Knowing they ruled out a fracture, the team is likely waiting to get an MRI at a local facility to determine any ligament damage within the foot. Based on the video, I suspect a midfoot sprain, but it appears as though he may have avoided a Lisfranc sprain due to his ability to bear weight on the foot afterward. 

This is an injury that we need more information on before a timeline can be established. However, if this is the case, it not only shows his toughness in playing through an injury but incredible to get the touchdown like that before exiting.

Tommy Doyle (right knee) 

Doyle was also another injury where his exit was reported much later than when the injury occurred. The injury appeared to occur with 11:45 left in the 3rd quarter when quarterback Jake Fromm was sacked. Doyle attempted to stay with his block and got turned around, eventually finishing behind Fromm. 

When he finished behind Fromm, Doyle appeared to take an awkward step with his right leg, briefly buckling inward. It’s not clear if this was the injury, but the next series for the offense, Doyle came back in with what looked to be a white brace or taped up knee. He continued to play on it through the 4th quarter before getting replaced by Jamil Douglas

The second instance where Doyle left also isn’t clear, but I believe Doyle suffered a minor MCL sprain that he attempted to play through. Like Brown, Sean McDermott had a favorable outlook on his return to the field. It is important to note that he was at practice Sunday, participating in some capacity. 

Davis Webb (left shoulder)

Webb went down with a shoulder injury with 9:12 left in the 4th quarter with a fumble due to a bad snap. He fell forward with his arm turned out and fell directly onto his shoulder as the ball bounced behind him.

Besides a bruised ego and some localized pain to the shoulder, it appears Webb avoided serious injury. I can’t exactly say what he did other than he landed on it and it looked awkward, but I’m not certain a specific injury occurred. Considering this is not his throwing shoulder, there is little concern moving forward. 

Other injury notes:

Stefon Diggs (knee)

Diggs returned to practice Sunday following an extended absence dating back to August 7th. Details regarding the injury have not been revealed but with the benefit of hindsight, it appears as though Diggs was dealing with some type of an overuse injury such as patellar tendinitis

He did not have bracing on the area or appear to favor either side, but he appears to move without hesitation or pain. This may be an injury that is quickly forgotten once the regular season begins, but considering the extra game this year, any sort of injury they can rest at the beginning can only help later on in the year. 

This will be something to watch from afar to see if this continues to give him further issues, but it appears that he is on track for Week 1.

While there were a ton of injuries, this is exactly why starters should not play during the preseason. Most of these injuries appear minor with the exception of Phillips and Stevenson. The team still has several weeks to prepare and heal up before hosting Pittsburgh in Week 1 on September 12th. 

Overall, major injuries avoided with further information yet to come on Phillips and Stevenson. Things will take shape in the coming days as the Bills prepare to host the Green Bay Packers for their Saturday afternoon game at Highmark Stadium for the final preseason warmup.

Top Photo Credit: WIVB

Buffalo Bills Preseason Game 2 Injury Preview- Chicago Bears

The Buffalo Bills head west to take on the Chicago Bears Saturday evening looking for their seventh consecutive preseason win! While the entire team does travel, there will be a number of players not suiting up once again with several due to injury. Below is all the known information regarding the Bills injuries along with any concerns for Chicago heading into the game.

OUT

These are either injuries that the players have not practiced in the past week or are not cleared. 

Forrest Lamp (calf)

Lamp has not practiced since July 31st and while there is a lot of training camp left, his time to make a mark is fleeting. It still isn’t known which calf he injured in the first open practice to fans, but whatever the severity is, this isn’t helping his case.

Isaiah Hodgins (left knee)

Hodgins exited Friday’s game following a catch going out of bounds, appearing to land on his left knee. He stayed in the next play before realizing something was wrong and was done for the night.

Sean McDermott noted that he has swelling they are trying to manage and see how he responds before they get him back out there. This would suggest that this was at least a contusion, especially how hard he hit on the turf. He could have injured a bursa sac which assists in reducing friction and cushion pressure points in the joints. A direct blow to this area likely caused localized swelling to the area and if not managed correctly, can become problematic throughout the season. 

He will unfortunately miss the game against Chicago but barring new information, should be able to play in the final preseason game against the Green Bay Packers.

Marquel Lee (COVID)

Lee was on the COVID reserve list since August 10th and returned on August 19th. Whether he was vaccinated or not, this missed time only continues to hurt his chances to make the roster, especially with the depth at the position. That amount of time out wouldn’t allow for the ability to play Saturday. 

Tommy Sweeney (foot)

Sweeney has not practiced since Friday’s game in Detroit when he left midway through the 4th quarter. This occurred following Detroit’s second touchdown when Sweeney was on kickoff. He was observed walking off the sidelines hopping briefly on his right foot that suggests that he somehow injured his left foot. 

He was in a walking boot at practice the next day but the side the boot is on has not been confirmed. If this is indeed the left foot, this appears to be the same foot that he dealt with last offseason that cost him the first half of the season before myocarditis from COVID appeared. More information will have to be known, but this is not good news for Sweeney as he continues to fight for a roster spot.

Christian Wade (shoulder)

Wade finally returned to practice Thursday following being out of practice dating back to August 5th. The only updates prior were that he had been in the facility with a sling on according to Matt Parrino of NYUP.com. To be in a sling that long indicates there is some type of instability that suggests a rotator cuff issue, labrum, or A/C joint sprain. There could be other possibilities, but further information would be required to speculate further. 

On Thursday, he was see working on conditioning off to the side. Like others on the list, each day he misses lessens his chance at making the active roster. Hopefully we will see his 2021 debut against the Packers.

Stefon Diggs (knee)

Sean McDermott continues to state that Diggs’ knee injury is not something they expect to have linger into the season, but he has now missed practice dating back to August 9th. Prior to that, he had practiced August 7th, was off August 6th, and practiced in full August 5th. 

This was the only report that was publicly known that indicates there was any type of injury to Diggs, but it does not appear to have involved his knee based on the wording below.

Whether this is an overuse injury, minor sprain, or something else, the team isn’t divulging any information. When he has been on the sidelines, he has not had any bracing on the knee or any visible swelling to either knee. He has not been observed doing any conditioning drills or even out at practice this past week. McDermott did note that they’re looking to get him back on the field next week. Teams aren’t required to give injury reports during preseason, but the Bills have at least detailed out what players missed practice and for what reason.

Looking even further, his publicly reported injury history reveals knee injuries in 2016 and 2018, missing a combined one game. He also dealt with knee soreness in the preseason last year, but he quickly returned to practice without further incident. The details of the knee injuries are not specific to which side nor the type of injury he suffered at the time.

The specifics of the knee injury remain murky and publicly reported information provides few leads. More information is needed, something that may not be provided for some time.

QUESTIONABLE

These players have not been ruled questionable, rather they have either been dealing with injury recently or it is a true question as to whether they will play. 

Mike Love (undisclosed)

Love did not suit up for Friday’s game and has been out of practice since with an undisclosed injury. Friday’s report was the first instance that I had found that there was some type of injury affecting him. He has had a long, complex history with injuries, but he was at least able to participate in conditioning Tuesday.

Mitch Morse (leg)

Morse was off to the side Tuesday with trainers briefly while they addressed his needs before returning to practice without missing a step. According to Matt Parrino, trainers examined and worked on his leg, side not specified, for 45 seconds to 1 minute before Morse returned to practice. Excluding the concussion history, Morse has been relatively healthy which is an overall good thing when it comes to his availability. Unless there is more information, this appears to be a non-factor.

Jaquan Johnson (knee)

Johnson did not practice Tuesday and was seen in street clothes off to the side. He was finally designated as a knee on Thursday despite being able to practice Sunday and Monday along with playing most of the game Friday. He was observed coming off the field with his helmet off following kickoff, but he quickly returned and there weren’t any further updates after that.

There is also nothing easily observed on film that suggests injury which might indicate this setback may have occurred in practice. Johnson is battling for a depth safety role and a place on special teams; ideally he doesn’t miss more time.

Antonio Williams (stinger)

Williams suffered a stinger in Friday’s game that when he was hit, forced a fumble and a brief exit from the game. He quickly returned, then missed Sunday, Monday, and Tuesday’s practice. He returned to practice Thursday, though only conditioning off to the side. While stingers can be brief, I expect that he had a lot of soreness and even some difficulty with either head or shoulder movements initially. 

Taking the time off of practice to fully rest was the correct move and as long as he doesn’t suffer a recurrence, then there is little concern moving forward. I anticipate that he suits up for Saturday.

Treyvon Hester (undisclosed)

Hester was not at practice Tuesday or Thursday and did not appear to suffer any known injuries in Friday’s contest. More information will have to be made known to determine any type of timeline for Hester.

Cody Ford (non-COVID illness)

Ford missed practice Thursday with a non-COVID illness. Depending on how he recovers will determine if he is available Saturday. Up to this point, Ford has had an excellent camp.

Will play:

Dion Dawkins (COVID)

Dawkins has been working back into shape since coming off the COVID reserve list last week. He detailed out his harrowing experience with the virus which was really sobering to hear. 

Sean McDermott stated that Dawkins would play, though I expect that he only plays several series as he gets his feet under him when it comes to conditioning.

Zack Moss (right hamstring)

Coming off a mild right hamstring strain, it was officially declared that Moss would play Saturday night in Chicago. While this hamstring strain could linger, this appears to be truly a mild case and has a lower chance to occur again. Like Dawkins, I expect that he only sees a few series early on in the game. 

Chicago Bears noted injuries:

Justin Fields (groin soreness)

Fields reportedly was dealing with groin tightness earlier this week and the team has been exercising caution as not to aggravate anything. He returned to practice the next day and head coach Matt Nagy reported that he would play Saturday, however, his time may be limited if his groin does not cooperate. 

David Montgomery (general soreness)

Like Fields, Montgomery is dealing with some general soreness after briefly playing against the Dolphins last week in their preseason opener. He returned to practice on Tuesday without restrictions. 

I would expect Montgomery to get several series and then have an early exit to present any aggravation of a lower body injury. Going back to last year, Montgomery suffered a groin strain early on that slowed him out of the gates, but once healthy, took off for over 1,000 yards.

Roquan Smith (groin)

While Smith did return to practice Wednesday, he is still coming off the groin injury that he has been working through since August 7th. Considering he didn’t play in the first preseason game, I would expect that he gets several series to knock the rust off and to prevent any aggravation of injury.

Robert Quinn (ankle)

Quinn suffered an ankle injury against the Dolphins last week. Along with Roquan Smith dealing with a groin injury of his own, I would expect the team to be cautious in rolling out all their starting linebackers so they will be ready for the season opener. I would not expect to see Quinn in any capacity.

Allen Robinson (hamstring)

Robinson has been working through a hamstring strain suffered last week in camp and has been limited in practice. Considering he is on a franchise tag and this is a meaningless game, I would not be surprised if he sits this one out. He can’t afford to suffer any injuries that will impact his market worth at the end of the season.

Teven Jenkins (back surgery)

Jenkins has been battling a back injury all training camp and has yet to have meaningful snaps. On Wednesday, it was reported that he required back surgery and that he would be out indefinitely, but the goal was to bring him back this season. Based on the wording of the information, it appears as though he had a herniated disc, requiring a microdiscectomy. 

He won’t be available for the preseason game and even when he does come back, I would be concerned about his effectiveness to play consistently. I expect that this year will be trying to get up to NFL speed and then get fully healthy for 2022.

Overall impressions:

The goal once again is to get through the game without injuries. The Bills were fairly close in that last game with exceptions to Hodgins, Williams, and Sweeney. I would like to see more starters play only to get the rust knocked off, but the Bills did just fine last year without preseason games, indicating it is not an absolute. Hopefully this game won’t require late game heroics to win the game like last time they played each other in the preseason.

Top Photo Credit: WKBW

Buffalo Bills Preseason Game 1 Injury Review- Detroit Lions

The Bills have won yet another preseason game, now on a six-game winning streak since last losing in 2018 against the Cincinnati Bengals in the third game. While it’s great to see the Bills win in the preseason, the fact that the team avoided known major injury is infinitely more beneficial. Below are the observed injuries from Friday’s game along with Sunday’s practice updates detailing out any other injuries not immediately known after the game.

In-game injuries:

Isaiah Hodgins (left knee)

Video is limited as the NFL continues to update Game Pass, but from what could be observed, Hodgins caught a 13-yard reception going out of bounds with 14:11 left in the 3rd quarter. He stayed in for at least one more play before exiting and then word came down that he was ruled out for the remainder of the night.

Following the game, Jon Scott of Spectrum TV observed Hodgins walking off the field with a minor limp but in no obvious discomfort. Based on the video, it appears as though he injured his left knee observing his walking pattern. Going back to the play looking at a camera view from the end zone, he landed hard on his left knee, likely causing the injury. 

This doesn’t appear to be anything more than a contusion, but Sean McDermott did say at Sunday’s practice that they’re taking his injury one day at a time as he deals with swelling and such. That wording doesn’t change my initial thoughts, but how much practice he’ll miss remains to be seen. 

Antonio Williams (stinger)

Williams exited the game briefly with what the team designated as a stinger following a fumble with 7:09 left in the 3rd quarter. It is difficult to see whether he was hit in the head or shoulder and which side as he disappeared into a sea of bodies before the ball popped out. Stingers are transient in most cases and the fact that he was cleared to return indicates that this was minor.

Williams doesn’t have a known history of stingers, however, collegiate injury histories are at times incomplete. Hopefully, this was a one-off occurrence and this doesn’t appear again later in the season.

Damar Hamlin (cramping)

Hamlin exited the game briefly with what appeared to be cramping in his legs with 2:25 left in the 4th quarter. He was observed getting stretched by the training staff and quickly returned. As it’s still relatively warm out, cramping, especially late into games is of no surprise. 

Tommy Sweeney (lower leg)

Sweeney missed practice Sunday and was seen in a walking boot. The side was not specified in media reports, but looking at the video, Sweeney exited the game with 7:32 left in the 4th quarter. This was following a kickoff following the second Lions touchdown. 

Sweeney makes a routine block and doesn’t appear to be kicked or stepped on. However, as he walks off the field, he hops onto his right leg and lifts his left foot up in discomfort and does not return. 

By video, it’s difficult to identify the specifics of the injury other than it’s the left side. Further information will have to be revealed, but it is important to note that he had foot surgery last year prior to training camp. Anecdotal reports noted him having a left foot injury, but this was never officially confirmed by the team or media reports.

Hopefully last year’s injury does not have anything to do with this year’s injury. More information will have to be known before coming to such conclusions. 

Other observations:

Duke Williams (hamstring)

Williams was a surprise to see playing in the game despite suffering a hamstring injury earlier in the week. He played in 40 percent of the offensive snaps finishing with 0 receptions on 3 targets. While the severity of the hamstring strain appears mild, the fact that Williams had to play knowing that his roster spot is tenuous at best, indicates that he knows what’s at stake. It’s possible the hamstring lingers as camp continues, but for his sake, he can’t afford any further setbacks. 

Zack Moss (right hamstring)

Moss did not suit up on Friday, but an important note that Joe Buscaglia of The Athletic noted in the pregame commentary stated that Moss was 50-50 to play according to McDermott. This is important considering he injured the hamstring on August 9th.

The fact that he returned to practice Sunday is also an excellent indicator, but something to monitor as camp progresses. Also on Sunday, McDermott went on to state that there’s hope that Moss can play in Saturday’s game against the Bears and that he has a ways to go. 

Finally, Jon Scott of Spectrum News took video of Moss working off to the side showing tape on his right posterior thigh, indicating the injured side. 

Stefon Diggs (knee)

Diggs hasn’t practiced since the second open practice on August 7th and still little is known regarding the specifics of the injury. Sean McDermott doesn’t believe that this is something that will linger into the season, but without more details, it’s hard to say. 

Emmanuel Sanders (foot)

While Sanders has returned to practice, he did not play Friday and is still working through his foot injury sustained on August 4th. Like Diggs, little is known regarding his injury. He continues to do work off to the side which makes it sound like they don’t want to aggravate anything by getting him back into team drills too quickly. 

Christian Wade (shoulder)

He didn’t play Friday but on the post game show of Shout! The Buffalo football podcast, Matt Parrino noted that Wade has been walking around the facility with a sling. However, he did not state how recently this was. He didn’t specify which side but that leads me to believe there is some type of instability which is not a great sign for Wade. 

It has been at least 10 days which would be adequate time for an A/C joint sprain to begin to heal which has me thinking of other possibilities. While this is speculation, it’s curious and at times concerning that Wade hasn’t been able to return to the sidelines in some capacity for working out. 

Mike Love/Bug Howard (undisclosed)

Both did not play Friday and there are reports they were injured but specifics are currently unknown. It isn’t clear whether they returned to practice Sunday.

Overall, while there are injuries, the only ones to really note are Diggs and Moss with a lesser concern regarding Sweeney, Hodgins, and Sanders. More information will have to be made available, but there is just under one month before the start of the regular season which is still a decent amount of time for players to get healthy. 

Top Photo Credit: BillsWire.USAToday.com

Buffalo Bills Preseason Game 1 Injury Preview- Detroit Lions

Real football is (kinda) back! The Bills are going to Detroit to play the Lions in their first preseason game in nearly two years as they begin the march towards the start of the 2021 NFL regular season. While the outcome won’t have any bearing on the standings, this is an opportunity for the coaches to get guys in live action to see how they perform. We already know that the Lions will be playing their starters for only about a quarter, according to head coach Dan Campbell. 

For the Bills, playing time will be based on individual players but it was noted Wednesday that Josh Allen would not be playing. 

I would expect that the Bills plan on doing the same as the Lions, but with several alterations to prevent injuries as several key players are not yet ready. Below are the injuries from this week and expectations heading into the game.

Buffalo Bills notable injuries:

OUT

These are either injuries that the players have not practiced in the past week or are not cleared. 

Christian Wade (shoulder)

Out since August 5th, Wade continues to work back from whatever shoulder ailment he is dealing with. He has yet to return to practice which makes it highly unlikely that he plays Friday. It’s a shame that he will miss one of the few opportunities to showcase his football skills, especially with Zack Moss out but playing hurt won’t help his chances, as miniscule as they are to make the roster.

Forrest Lamp (calf)

Lamp has been dealing with a calf strain, side not specified, since July 31st which has really hampered his ability to showcase his health and talent as he tries to parlay his 2020 season into a job with the Bills.

Saturday will mark two weeks since the injury and it’s hopeful that he will be able to resume practicing in the near future to at least get some reps in to appear in the preseason game against Chicago.

Vernon Butler (concussion)

Butler suffered a concussion despite wearing the Guardian Caps during practice on August 7th and has entered the concussion protocol. Even if he had cleared the protocol, it was unlikely that he would play this week coming off the concussion. 

Jerry Hughes (left calf)

On Tuesday, Hughes returned to practice after getting activated off the NFI list for his calf injury. He has been working to get back up to speed and while he won’t play Friday, his return to the defensive line will only help push some of the younger players in their development. 

There is a chance that Hughes could re-injure the calf, but I believe his chances to be rather low as he had to pass a physical to practice. I would interpret that as him being closer to 100 percent compared to someone who was coming off a surgery such as an ACL or Achilles. 

I wouldn’t expect to see him this preseason or at the very least, several snaps against the Packers to knock some rust off.

Zack Moss/Duke Williams (hamstring)

Both Moss and Williams left practice Tuesday with hamstring injuries, though the side was not specified for either. It has been very humid and hot this week which could have contributed to these injuries, and these are still very much an acclimation issue. 

Fortunately, Moss doesn’t have any prior issues with his hamstrings and same goes for Williams. They haven’t practiced since Tuesday and I’m not certain they both will be ready to play until the final preseason game against the Packers, making this a one-to-three week injury. Hamstring strains can vary greatly in terms of severity and while this won’t affect Moss’ roster spot, this could significantly hamper the chances for Williams to make this roster. 

Dion Dawkins/Marquel Lee (COVID-19)

Dawkins has begun the process to return to camp on August 12th after starting on the COVID list. He won’t play Friday and I’m not certain he ever sees the field during the preseason unless they use the final preseason game to get several reps in prior to the regular season.

Lee moved to the COVID list which made room for Jerry Hughes to return. He has a tough road to the roster and a bout of COVID won’t help his chances.

Stefon Diggs (knee)

Diggs sat out of three practices this week with a knee injury, though the mechanism of injury or when it occured is unknown. According to my notes from last year, he did deal with knee soreness during the preseason, but did not affect him later in the year.

In the clip below, Diggs is coaching off to the side without any noticeable swelling, bracing, wrap, or hesitation in moving either knee. This isn’t to say there isn’t an injury, but rather this may be a minor one that may just disappear.

We simply need more information before jumping to any further conclusions.

QUESTIONABLE

These players have not been ruled questionable, rather they have either been dealing with injury recently or it is a true question as to whether they will play. 

Jon Feliciano/Tommy Doyle (illness)

Despite COVID being all the rage, other illnesses do occur and seem to have affected both the veteran and rookie. Depending on the type of illness, it’s possible both could play Friday. I would take Doyle over Feliciano to play.

Matt Milano (mouth)

When I read a mouth designation, this is not something I see often but I would interpret this as a dental complaint. He left practice Monday but was able to return and practice in full on Tuesday which indicated that this might have been a non-issue. If he doesn’t play, it’s due to his status as a starter and not the injury. 

Emmanuel Sanders (foot)

Sanders returned to practice Monday and appeared to not miss a beat, flashing again during practice and demonstrating why the front office brought him in. Unless he continues to have problems, this may be irrelevant moving forward. He doesn’t need the reps, but he may get some.

Marquel Harrell (foot)

Still little is known regarding Harrell with his foot injury. He returned to practice as early as Tuesday and continues to show his worth. Either way, any time missed is not good for someone trying to make the roster. 

Detroit Lions notable injuries:

Breshad Perriman (hip)

Perriman’s hip issue cropped up last Saturday from what was available and past that, there isn’t anything more. While he does have a lengthy injury history throughout his multiple stops around the league, any sort of hip ailment would prevent him from suiting up as a precaution Friday.

Tyrell Williams (groin/dislocated left 5th digit)

Williams’ groin is tight per HC Dan Campbell, but is otherwise fine. Reports are that he was all good to go, but I don’t expect him to play more than the quarter that Campbell states to avoid exacerbating anything. It’s also important to note that he dislocated his pinky on his left hand during practice last week, but buddy taping the area to give it support may allow him to get through the game.

Tyrell Crosby (hamstring)

While Crosby is listed on the second team, he would be expected to play a majority of the game. However, according to reports, Crosby is dealing with a Grade 1 hamstring strain suffered on August 3rd that has kept him out of practice since then. 

I don’t see him playing Friday which means this could be a mismatch as a tackle that some of the new Bills defensive ends can take advantage of whoever third string is on the team. 

De’Andre Swift (groin tightness)

Out since August 4th with groin tightness, Swift has suited up but unable to participate in any meaningful team drills. Considering he is the lead back of that team, they want to keep him healthy and any sort of setback, especially with a groin injury could linger into the season. I don’t see how he plays until this is fully resolved. 

T.J. Hockenson/Da’Shawn Hand (minor injuries)

Both are dealing with minor injuries and looking at the depth chart, we should see more of Hand with regards to playing defensive tackle over Hockenson at tight end.

Overall impressions: 

Overall, this is a preseason game and I don’t expect any special moments from the starters. Those that do play need to get in, get their reps, and get out healthy. They need some live game action to ramp up to the regular season, but this should be a showcase for every single depth player, especially for the bottom five of the roster that will be cut next Tuesday, barring injury.

Top Photo Credit: Bleacher Report

Buffalo Bills Training Camp Injury Review- August 8th

Week 2 of practice of Buffalo Bills training camp wrapped up Saturday and once again, there are injury updates to address. Fortunately, there continues to be no major injuries, but risk for injury is still high as they continue to acclimate to live football. Check out the updates below.

Jon Feliciano (right shoulder)

According to reports by WROC’s Thad Brown, Feliciano got twisted up in a team drill on Monday, tweaking his shoulder, later clarified to be a right shoulder injury by WGR’s Sal Cappacio.

He missed only one day of practice before returning which indicates that this is likely not a worrisome issue. It is important to note that the right shoulder injury is the same side he tore his pectoral muscle last year, but it is an observation and not implying that either are related. I doubt there will be anything more to come of this, but every injury is worth noting.

Forrest Lamp (calf)

Lamp appeared to have suffered his calf injury, likely a strain, at the practice on Saturday that was open to the public. There did not appear to be any mention of his injury during practice and only became known when he did not participate in practice Monday.

Lamp doesn’t have a history of soft tissue injuries and he is far enough removed from both his ACL tear and fibula fractures. The calf injury fits in line with the acclimation injuries we see early in camp and hopefully is not something that keeps him out long. While it’s possible that Lamp is out for at least a week or two, he cannot afford to miss much more than that as he fights for a roster spot.

Unless there is more information on the severity, I would expect Lamp to return sometime later this week to the sidelines for individual drills. 

Marquel Harrell (foot)

Virtually nothing is known about Harrell’s injury other than it is a foot designation. He doesn’t have much of an injury history, hopefully this injury was the result of getting his foot stepped on during live action. 

Harrell has been shown to have the eye of Brandon Beane as he was in camp last year and signed to the practice squad late last year. He has a great shot to find the practice squad again this year, but any injury setbacks could hurt his chances.

Christian Wade (shoulder)

Wade injured his shoulder on August 5th and has been out of practice since then with no additional details. While Wade continues to be a long shot to make the roster, having any type of injury doesn’t help his cause in missing valuable reps.

Emmanuel Sanders (foot)

This injury requires more information to determine the injury and how long Sanders will be out. According to reports, he twisted his ankle during reps on August 4th and returned, but missed practice the following day. 

He did return the next day to do individual drills off to the side. The fact that he came out to do individual drills and not continued to sit on the sidelines is a good thing, suggesting the twisting motion wasn’t that of a significant sprain or a midfoot injury, but more information is required to truly see when he will return.

He was observed on the sidelines during the open practice Saturday not practicing, but appeared in good spirits. I expect that when he does return, he will be 100 percent and not try to battle through anything that could linger. 

Jacob Hollister (back)

Hollister returned back to practice in pads August 5th, though only practicing off to the side initially.

He was able to return for Saturday’s practice after a week off and was able to participate without restriction. Based on the time missed, it appears this may have been a minor acclimation injury. 

Vernon Butler (head)

Jon Scott from Spectrum News reported that Vernon Butler was being evaluated for a head injury during Saturday’s scrimmage. Details of the head injury are not available, but it’s important to note that this comes despite all offensive and defensive lineman wearing Guardian Caps, designed to limit the repetitive subconcussive hits each lineman take every play. 

Butler will have to either pass the initial testing or if he doesn’t, complete the 5 stage concussion protocol that every player has to go through following a head injury. We won’t know until Monday whether he is in the protocol. 

He doesn’t have any publicly reported concussions that I have found, but it’s not certain this is his first one. 

Other observations:

Stefon Diggs (oblique)

Diggs revealed that he suffered his torn oblique during warmups prior to the Week 17 matchup against the Dolphins. Many, including myself, thought he injured the oblique during the game, but it was NFL reporter Michael Giardi that noted he was holding his side during warmups.

He went on further to say that he did not require surgery and rehabbed it in the off-season. It’s possible he could suffer another oblique injury, but I don’t believe his risk is any higher than it was previously.

Jerry Hughes (left calf)

Hughes is still out with a calf injury, appearing to be a left medial gastrocnemius strain based on the placement of the tape in the picture below. 

Credit: @Crazy4OReilly90 on Twitter

Unfortunately, that is one of the most common areas to suffer a calf strain according to literature. It’s important to note that the left side is the leg he leads with coming off the edge. This means his left leg is the force generator which further explains why he is out and won’t be back until he is 100 percent.

He was observed going through individual drills during Saturday’s practice, but has yet to pass a physical. Based on these updates, I suspect he is still at least a week away, possibly even two, barring setbacks. 

Hughes’ roster spot is secure and his absence only allows other young players and roster bubble candidates valuable reps. Once he is cleared, we will see the corresponding roster moves. 

As a result of all these injuries, especially on the offensive line, the Bills have signed OL Marquel Harrell, TE Bug Howard, OL Tyler Gauthier, and OL Caleb Benenoch. OG Ike Boettger has since returned from the COVID-19 Reserve list. Injuries during training camp are inevitable but having proper depth for all the drills to avoid further injury is imperative. 

The Bills practice this week and then head to Detroit for their first preseason game in two years on Friday evening. I’m curious how the team will divide playing time, especially with one less preseason game. We should get more clarity later this week. 

Once again, very few injury concerns following two weeks of training camp. Let’s hope it doesn’t change. 

Top Photo Credit: Las Vegas Review Journal

OL Caleb Benenoch Injury Profile

Caleb Benenoch

Position: OL
Height/Weight: 6’5″/305 lbs.
College: UCLA
Year joined Bills: 2021
Acquired: Free Agency via Patriots

College Injuries:

No publicly reported injuries.

Pro Injuries:

2016 Buccaneers:

No publicly reported injuries.

2017 Buccaneers:

Knee/ankle injury, side not specified, Week 16, missed 0 games.

2018 Buccaneers:

Knee injury preseason, missed 0 regular season games.

2019 Patriots/Panthers/Cowboys/Lions:

No publicly reported injuries.

2020 Patriots:

Undisclosed injury, designated to practice squad injury list.

Buffalo Bills Training Camp Injury Review- August 1st

The 2021 Buffalo Bills season officially kicked off with the return of training camp that began July 27th and first practice on the 28th. Following four practices, there are some health and injury notes from the week that have to be addressed. 

COVID-19 Reserve list:

Dion Dawkins, Ike Boettger

Both started on the COVID-19 Reserve list and are free to come off once they pass through the NFL protocols. Unfortunately, this will possibly continue to happen to other plyers as the preseason and season wears on, but for those that are vaccinated, mitigating this hurdle will be far easier than those not vaccinated. 

Injuries:

Jerry Hughes (calf)

Hughes starts off on the Non-Football Injury (NFI) list with a calf injury, side not specified. It’s unknown when he suffered the injury or how severe it is, but it’s significant enough that he could not pass a physical. 

From what could be found, Hughes does not have a repeated history with calf strains or soft tissue injuries for that matter, but has had a long list of injuries he has played through. It’s important to note that he had a calf injury last week during Week 2 against the Dolphins, but it did not force him to miss any games nor did it appear to linger. I’m not certain that these injuries are related.

It’s likely that he strained the calf while training on his own and as he is older, is taking the conservative approach for the start of the season. Unless we get more information, this is a wait and see approach. I won’t be alarmed if Hughes misses two weeks, potentially even more as calf injuries can linger if not addressed properly. Overall, this is a smart approach from the training staff.

Jacob Hollister (back)

Hollister left practice early Thursday with a back injury designation and has since been ruled day-to-day. It is unknown the specifics of the injury, but my initial thoughts are that it is generalized back tightness from all the recent blocking and football activities. He does not have a known history of back problems according to his injury profile, but considering the designation he has, I’d expect him to return to practice sometime late next week or early the following week. 

I don’t anticipate we will receive more information anytime soon, but this may be a general acclimation injury, if so, this is something that should not linger.

Other observations:

Cole Beasley and Stefon Diggs did not practice at various times this week but both appear to be more veteran rest days rather than injuries with Diggs confirmed as a rest day. Both should be fully healed from their respective injuries from the playoffs. With how long the season is, it’s a smart move. 

Anthony Prohaska of Cover 1 observed Emmanuel Sanders being worked on by trainers after practice Saturday in the stadium, specifically his lower back and hip. He doesn’t have any previously reported back or hip injuries, but I would expect that this is more of an acclimation issue based on the wording of Prohaska. 

This will be something to monitor if he begins to miss time or practice, but right now it is the first week of camp and this is the time to get the body right.

Bills-related injury news:

Patrick DiMarco 

DiMarco retired last year due to a neck injury sustained in training camp and that was all we heard from him in close to a year until he appeared on Shout: A Buffalo Football Podcast. 

He revealed that he had a history of stingers throughout his career and one he suffered in camp lingered unlike other ones, forcing him to seek further medical attention as he couldn’t lift his arm up. 

A stinger occurs when the head or shoulder suffers a blow to the area, suddenly stretching or compressing the nerves coming off of the spinal cord. These injuries occur often in football, and symptoms can last seconds to days, depending on severity. This injury is the result of when an arm is pulled down one way and the head is pushed the other. This can also occur with a direct blow to the shoulder or if the head is hyper-extended and side-bent towards the same side of trauma, causing compression.  

After tests were performed, it was best that he retire due to the current state of his neck and quality of the nerves coming off the spinal cord. While this does not appear to be on the same level of what former Bills center Eric Wood dealt with, repeated stingers can be the cause of greater underlying issues such as foraminal stenosis in the cervical region or nerve damage in the brachial plexus. The stenosis can be a narrowing of the canal that the nerve exits from, causing pain, numbness, and weakness. There could have also been a disc issue that was pressing on the nerve, but DiMarco did not clarify the injury to that extent. 

Repeated stingers can cause problems down the line and DiMarco is an example of that. It did not appear that he was ready to be done playing, but injuries forced him from the game, as it does many players. It helps to know why he had to suddenly retire especially after being a captain the last several years, but such is life. For more details, make sure to go listen to the podcast linked here

Overall, this was a pretty good week for training camp with little injury concerns. Continue to follow @BangedUpBills on Twitter for the latest updates following practice and latest analysis here.

Top Photo Credit: ProFootballTalk/NBC Sports

TE Bug Howard Injury Profile

Bug Howard

Position: TE
Height/Weight: 6’5″/228 lbs.
College: North Carolina
Year joined Bills: 2021
Acquired: Free Agency via Jaguars

College Injuries:

No publicly reported injuries.

Pro Injuries:

2017 Colts/Browns:

No publicly reported injuries.

2018 Panthers/Atlanta Legends (XFL):

No publicly reported injuries.

2019 Broncos:

Ankle injury, training camp practice

Placed on injured reserve due to a hand injury, side not specified, possibly suffered in a preseason game against the 49ers. Later released with an injury settlement. Signed with the Broncos in December of that year.

2020 Jaguars:

No publicly reported injuries.

2021 Bills:

Undisclosed injury, August 12th, missed Preseason Game 1 Lions.