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Harrison Phillips has been playing with a torn PCL this year

Matt Warren is Associate Director of NFL coverage for SB Nation and previously covered the Bills for Buffalo Rumblings for more than a decade.

Harrison Phillips has been battling through an injury all year, the Buffalo Bills’ defensive tackle told The Buffalo News. After tearing his ACL once in college and again in 2019, he tore the PCL in his left knee this preseason. He’s been playing through it.

Phillips suffered the injury on August 21st and at the time, head coach Sean McDermott said Phillips could be out “a while”. But Phillips played in the season opener, with what Ian Rapoport said was a minor knee injury. It turns out they were both sort of right.

The PCL helps with stability of the knee, but you’re able to play through and surgery isn’t always required to correct it. Still, it may have been more mentally taxing on the gun-shy defensive tackle than anything.

“I have like PTSD; went back to some really bad places,” Phillips told The News. “That’s how that thing kind of is. You always expect the worst and immediately jump ship, so luckily it wasn’t as bad as it could have been.”

Phillips says he’s finally starting to feel like himself right now and the early season rest he received helped after Star Lotulelei returned to the lineup. He was inactive in Weeks 2, 3, and 5.

Lotulelei missed the opening game with an injury, and Phillips played through his own injury. He’s missed the last several weeks with COVID-19 and Phillips has once again stepped in.

Coming off his surgery, Phillips says he wasn’t feeling good about his knee until halfway through the 2020 season. Then this season, he was also feeling less than 100%. It’s why he thinks he hasn’t reached his ceiling yet as a player.

Phillips is in the final year of his rookie deal.