Just a few more days and the fate of the Buffalo Bills’ 2023 season will be known as they face off with the Miami Dolphins to determine what the AFC playoff picture will look like. It’s been a roller coaster ride for sure with coaching changes, devastating injuries, and noisy distractions. But the Bills seem to have righted the ship winning their last four games and putting themselves in position to win a fourth straight divisional title. And to help their cause, they seem to have gotten healthy at just the right time.
Thursday injury report pic.twitter.com/tShvI3ABwg— Buffalo Bills PR (@BuffaloBillsPR) January 4, 2024
Bills players trending up
- QB Josh Allen (neck/finger)
- DE Leonard Floyd (ribs)
- S Micah Hyde (neck)
These guys will play on Sunday. There’s no way they’re missing g a game of this magnitude due to some soreness, bumps, and bruises. Both Josh Allen and head coach Sean McDermott have repeatedly said that the Buffalo quarterback is going to be fine and the soreness he’s feeling after last Sunday’s game isn’t going to keep him from preparing or playing in the season finale Sunday in Miami. Hyde’s neck injury is something he has been managing on and off all season. It escalated after Week 14 and caused the veteran safety to miss two games. It’s only natural that after playing 100% of Buffalo’s defensive snaps this past week the now-33-year-old Hyde would take things slow in practice early in the week. But there’s also not much reason to think he won’t play Sunday night. Floyd has been working through some sore ribs for weeks now, but the fact that the wrist injury he also had listed previously is no longer an issue is good news. Floyd hasn’t missed time due to what’s ailing him and he’s not going to start now.
Bills players holding steady
- S Damar Hamlin (shoulder)
Hamlin injured his shoulder in Week 16 while the Bills defeated the Los Angeles Chargers over Christmas weekend. Despite returning to play the remainder of the game with a harness on, Hamlin was inactive in Week 17. However, with Hyde returning to the lineup, he most likely would have been a healthy scratch anyway. Most likely we’ll see the same scenario this week.
Bills players returned from IR this season
- EDGE Von Miller
- TE Dawson Knox
- DT DaQuan Jones
- CB Kaiir Elam
Miller, Knox, and Jones have all been active since returning to play — although Miller was a healthy scratch in Week 17 as Jones returned and defensive tackle Poona Ford had been quite productive, thus earning some more playing time, the week before. While Elam was activated back to the 53-man roster he found himself once again inactive on game day — something that has been the norm for him most weeks. I would expect that Elam will sit again this week. Miller is hard to say, but McDermott may choose to get the veteran back on the field.
Bills players still on IR
- DT Jordan Phillips
- LB Matt Milano
- CB Tre’Davious White
- RB Damien Harris
- WR Justin Shorter
- TE Zach Davidson
- OL Tommy Doyle
Of these, it’s likely we could see Phillips back before training camp — and then only if the Bills were to make it to the second round of the playoffs, as that’s the earliest he would be available by league rule.
As for the Dolphins, who will be hosting Sunday night’s matchup, their injury report is still a mess but the majority of their players are saying that they plan to play. So here’s just a basic look at what their medical staff is dealing with this week.
Miami Dolphins’ Thursday injury report ahead of Sunday’s showdown with the Buffalo Bills.— David Furones (@DavidFurones_) January 4, 2024
Tyreek Hill was absent. Terron Armstead returned to practice. Mike White added to injury report with right shoulder but participated in full. pic.twitter.com/jLk9mLxvx0
Dolphins NOT practicing
- LB Bradley Chubb (knee)
- WR Tyreek Hill (ankle/personal)
- CB Xavien Howard (foot)
- RB Raheem Mostert (knee/ankle)
- WR Jaylen Waddle (ankle)
Dolphins with LIMITED practice
- RB De’Von Achane (toe/ribs)
- OT Terron Armstead (knee/ankle/back)
- OLB Jerome Baker (knee)**
- G Lester Cotton (hip)
- OL Liam Eichenberg (calf/ankle)
- FS Jevon Holland (knees)
- G Robert Hunt (hamstring)
- OT Austin Jackson (oblique)
- LB David Long (knee)
- MLB Duke Riley (ankle)
** Still on Injured Reserve. Would need to be added to the Miami 53-man roster before Sunday in order to be able to be active at game time.
Dolphins practicing FULLY (but still on the injury report)
- CB Jalen Ramsey (knee)
- DE Zach Sieler (illness)
- QB Tua Tagovailoa (quad/left shoulder)
- QB Mike White (right shoulder)
Dolphins still on INJURED RESERVE
- RB Salvon Ahmed
- LB Jerome Baker
- DB Keion Crossen
- LB Jaelen Phillips
- LB Zeke Vandenburgh
- OL Connor WIlliams
- OL Isaiah Wynn
With one more day of practice before game-day designations start rolling in, tomorrow afternoon could tell us a whole new story about what Sunday will look like.