Buffalo Bills quarterback A.J. McCarron had the opportunity to claim a starting role in an audition with against the Cleveland Browns Friday night, but the evening ended in disaster for him. The passer suffered a shoulder injury, which Vic Carucci of The Buffalo News is reporting to be a hairline collarbone fracture. John Wawrow of The Associated Press confirmed the report.
McCarron and the first-string Bills offense struggled against Cleveland’s starters, and the quarterback took multiple hits from Cleveland’s defensive line. A hard hit from Myles Garrett may have triggered the injury:
AJ McCarron got swamped by Myles Garrett late in the 1st quarter. It didn't look good. pic.twitter.com/PYmNpXTFWj— Prescott Rossi (@PrescottRossi) August 18, 2018
A broken collarbone cost Aaron Rodgers eight weeks of his season a year ago (and more, when after he came back for one game and the Packers lost, he was shut down for the rest of the year). That’s the typical time frame for an injury of this nature, meaning McCarron could be a candidate for injured reserve.
With McCarron out for an indefinite amount of time, the Bills will likely need to sign another quarterback to get them through the remaining preseason games. As a veteran with an affordable contract, this injury doesn’t likely take him out of contention for a roster spot, but it drastically hurts his chances to start this season. This battle now becomes a face-off between Josh Allen and Nate Peterman.