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Bills vs. Bengals: Mid-week injury trends

Good news: Josh Allen was a full participant

Buffalo Bills Training Camp Photo by Timothy T Ludwig/Getty Images

As the Buffalo Bills get ready for what will be a true test of the team’s mettle headed into the toughest part of their schedule, we have a look at what may be the best-looking injury report they’ve put out since Week 2.

Bills players trending up

  • QB Josh Allen (shoulder)
  • TE Quintin Morris (ankle)
  • S Damar Hamlin (illness)

Quarterback Josh Allen was a full participant in today’s practice. That statement in itself should be enough to get all of Bills Mafia pumped up and ready to rally in true-Mafia form. Let the trash-talking, table-smashing, party begin!

Seriously, Allen likely benefited from the few extra days the Bills had since they last played on October 26. While he was limited in yesterday’s walk through, the 27-year-old quarterback said that it was a matter of limiting the number of throws so he would feel healthy on Sunday. He also predicted that he would be “back like nothing ever happened.” Let’s hope.

Quintin Morris being a full participant after missing the last two weeks with an ankle injury is a good thing. In last Thursday’s win over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, the Bills only had rookie tight end Dalton Kincaid available. While Kincaid did more than well enough, even scoring the first touchdown of his career, having a second weapon — one with experienced blocking abilities — will help Allen keep that shoulder functioning “like nothing ever happened.”

Safety Damar Hamlin was sick. Now he’s not. Whether he plays Sunday night is another question, one that head coach Sean McDermott said will be answered based on football and not emotion. It was Hamlin who collapsed on the field in cardiac arrest back in January. Now the Bills head back to Paycor Stadium — the same place that tragedy almost took a teammate. But the team says that’s behind them. That Hamlin is okay and part of the team is what matters now. The focus this week is a quest to avenge the loss that knocked them out of last year’s playoffs.

Bills players trending down

  • LB Baylon Spector (hamstring)
  • LB A.J. Klein (back)

Not great news for Buffalo to have two linebackers not practicing. Spector has dealt with a hamstring since the end of preseason — in fact he was just brought back from Injured Reserve (IR), but has yet to be active on game day — but A.J. Klein’s back injury is new. The Bills are already without All-Pro linebacker Matt Milano who had surgery for a leg injury he suffered when the Bills were in London for Week 5. Second-year linebacker Terrel Bernard has done a more-than-adequate job taking over the middle linebacker position this season while linebackers Tyrel Dodson and rookie Dorian Williams have filled in for the injured Milano. But down two depth players will add pressure on the trio, as the only other linebacker on the roster is Tyler Matakevich who’s used almost exclusively for special teams.

Bills players on Injured Reserve

  • WR Justin Shorter
  • LB Matt Milano
  • DT DaQuan Jones
  • RB Damien Harris
  • CB Tre’Davious White
  • CB Kaiir Elam

This is a long list of players the Bills are without, and a key reason why their season has been a roller coaster of large-margin victories to last-second wins (and losses). The hope is that somewhere in the next three weeks, they’ll have figured out how to fill the roster holes. If judging by the transactions that have taken place at One Bills Drive is an accurate measure, they may have just done that. We’ll see in due time.

As for Sunday night’s host, the Cincinnati Bengals, their mid-week injury report doesn’t look too bad.

Bengals trending down

  • DT Josh Tupou (shoulder)
  • S Tycen Anderson (knee)

Both of these guys are depth players for the Bengals, so their not practicing — and potentially sitting out Sunday night — is unlikely to have an impact on the game.

Bengals holding steady

  • DE Trey Hendrickson (foot)
  • OT Orlando Brown (groin)
  • LB Akeem Davis-Gaither (knee)

The Bengals are looking to get these three back on the field Sunday night, as Hendrickson and Brown are keys to winning battles in the trenches. It’s likely that with them all limited today, up from a DNP for Hendrickson yesterday, they will be ready to go in 72 hours.

Bengals trending up

  • RB Joe Mixon (chest)
  • LB Devin Harper (hamstring)

It’s no secret that the Bengals want Mixon active Sunday, and with a full day of practice today after being limited yesterday, that should happen. Mixon has 453 yards and two touchdowns on 112 carries so far this season with another 127 yards receiving.

With one more day of practice this week, anything can happen, but it looks like both teams should be meeting on Sunday night with full rosters — or in Buffalo’s case, what their full roster looks like for at least the next four-plus weeks.