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Bills-Patriots injury trends looking good for Buffalo

Bills easing back into practice following unprecedented Week 17

NFL: Buffalo Bills at Cincinnati Bengals Joseph Maiorana-USA TODAY Sports

The Buffalo Bills completed their first full practice since leaving Paycor Stadium Monday night after teammate Damar Hamlin suffered a cardiac arrest on the field during the first quarter of their Week 17 game against the Cincinnati Bengals. While that game won’t be played now, the Bills do need to be focused on this weekend’s opponent.

Here’s a look at the team’s mid-week injury report and how the players are trending as we move toward the Week 18 finale with the New England Patriots.

Bills injuries trending up

  • Rodger Saffold (vet rest)
  • Jordan Poyer (knee/vet rest)
  • Cam Lewis (forearm)

The fact that Poyer is listed with the knee injury that has plagued him for the last three weeks (that we have now learned is a lateral meniscus tear), and there is no mention of the elbow injury that’s been a problem for a significant part of this season is a good sign that the All-Pro safety is trending up. A DNP today isn’t a big concern as he was also on a vet rest day. Last week, Poyer didn’t practice at all and was given a questionable designation headed into the Monday Night Football game in Cincinnati, but he was still on the field when the game started. It’s highly likely that he will be on the field this week as well.

Rodger Saffold and Cam Lewis aren’t anything noteworthy as Lewis has been on the list with a forearm injury all season but it hasn’t hindered his game availability and Saffold gets a veteran rest day every week.

Bills injuries holding steady

  • Josh Allen (ankle/elbow)
  • Tyrel Dodson (knee)
  • Dawson Knox (hip)
  • Matt Milano (knee)
  • Jordan Phillips (shoulder)
  • Taron Johnson (concussion)

Dawson Knox, Matt Milano, and Jordan Phillips all seem to be following the same protocols they used last week, which is to be expected since less than ten minutes of football was played this past week. Knox injured his hip after being dumped onto the frozen turf at Soldier Field two weeks ago while Milano has dealt with a knee injury for several weeks. Phillips initially injured his shoulder in Week 13. While he missed the next two games, he was active on Christmas Eve when the Bills beat the Chicago Bears but came up holding his injured arm late in the game. Despite reaggravating the injury, he was active on Monday. The fact that they are all listed as limited today indicates that each remain status quo with their respective injuries, and it can be assumed that they will be active again this week.

Tyrel Dodson and Taron Johnson are new additions to the list this week. While it isn’t clear how Dodson was injured, we know that Johnson left the field with a head injury less than a minute into Monday night’s game. Johnson fell to the ground on a block over the middle and was struck by another player in the process. While he’s in the league’s concussion protocol, the fact that he’s limited means he’s getting closer to that fifth phase — in which he needs to be cleared by both the Buffalo team doctor and the Independent Neurological Consultant assigned to the Bills. Before we can make a guess on whether he’ll be active on Sunday afternoon, we’ll need to see his participation level in tomorrow’s practice. But it’s possible that he could clear protocol and make it to game time.

Then there’s Josh Allen. Buffalo’s signal caller has played through an elbow injury he suffered in the team’s Week 9 loss to the New York Jets. While, being the competitor he is, Allen has played every snap despite the injury, there have been times when his throws seemed to miss his usual zing. Now, Allen has an ankle injury after Bengals defensive end Trey Hendrickson rolled into his leg. We’ll have to see if it affects Allen’s mobility. Regardless, I would bet on Allen being on the game-day active list.

Bills injuries trending down

Get ready for it … none!

This is a first this season. Obviously, the team will be without safety Damar Hamlin (you can read today’s update on his condition here) and there are several players still on Injured Reserve (Micah Hyde, Jamison Crowder, Von Miller, Tommy Doyle, Jake Kumerow, Chirstian Benford), but the players on the active roster are getting healthy at just the right time.