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Consulting With The Coaches

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Bills HC Sean McDermott on injury updates + how Buffalo has started to prepare to face Chiefs in AFC Divisional Round


And just like that, it's time to turn our attention to the AFC Divisional round.

Following Buffalo's 31-17 win over the Steelers on Monday, the Bills had an off day today and then will be back at practice Wednesday to prepare to face the Chiefs.

Head coach Sean McDermott met with the media Tuesday evening to give updates on the team's injury report, how they are game planning to play Kansas City and whether or not they expect this week's lake effect snow to impact practice.

A long list of injuries for the Bills

McDermott said that the following players are day-to-day going into the week:

  • Taylor Rapp (Calf)
  • Gabe Davis (Knee)
  • Rasul Douglas (Knee)
  • Tyrel Dodson (Shoulder)
  • Christian Benford (Knee)
  • Terrel Bernard (Ankle)
  • Taron Johnson (Concussion protocol)
  • Baylon Spector (Back)
  • Sam Martin (Hamstring)

Rapp, Davis, Douglas and Dodson all missed the Wild Card game, while the other five got banged up in the team's win over Pittsburgh. There were no additional updates on any of the players and they are all deemed "day-to-day" by McDermott. 

The practice status for all nine players will definitely be worth monitoring throughout the week.

More lake effect snow in the forecast for Orchard Park

While Orchard Park isn't expected to receive much snow , if any, this Sunday, there is a high likelihood the area gets more lake effect snow during the week  — something that could cause Buffalo's practice plans to shift should there be a travel ban in place.

As it stands, the Bills will hold their normal practices Wednesday-Friday; the staff has already discussed potential practice changes should there be a need to and are confident they can still get a normal week of practice in.

"We were just discussing it. I just left the game plan meeting and came in here to discuss that with some of our operations staff," McDermott shared. "Just making sure we're on top of it the best we can. We've got a plan in place to make sure we're getting the players in at the right time, as well as the staff, and trying to be on top of that from a scheduling standpoint. So we'll handle it. Confident in that."

Does the Week 14 matchup vs. the Chiefs help in preparation?

The question above was posed to McDermott during his media availability and the Bills head coach offered insight on why it's both a yes and no answer.

McDermott shared that the postponement of the Wild Card game allowed some of the Bills to start the early stages of game planning for the Chiefs. Even though the Bills had not yet won their Wild Card matchup, it is common practice for members of the coaching staff to look ahead to their next opponent during the regular season.

"Sometimes position coaches are able to a little bit more easily from a standpoint of they're not calling the game (as coordinators) . So they're able to prepare a little bit ahead that way," McDermott said.

As far as the film from Buffalo's Week 14 game in Kansas City, McDermott said they are reviewing what worked and what didn't in the 20-17 win, while also understanding both KC and the Bills have evolved their play since that game over a month ago.

"We look at it. But I think there's been four or five true games since then that both teams have played, so we'll focus mostly on that and factor it all in together and try to come up with the right plan," he said.

Still, Buffalo has faced the Chiefs five times since 2021, so the staff is aware of the important aspects in creating a game plan when going against Kansas City,

"Familiarity certainly helps as opposed to maybe playing an opponent that we haven't faced in a year or two," McDermott said.

Buffalo also has two days less of rest than the Chiefs due to both the one-day postponement of Bills-Steelers and that KC played on Saturday night. Though it could be easy to point that out as a potential advantage for their opponent, the Bills coaching staff doesn't think it affects their team's preparation.

"Really no significance. There's nothing we can do about it other than getting ourselves ready to go," McDermott said. "Our team has fought all season long. We're not going to stop fighting now."

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