The Bills entered last weekend's preseason game minus Roscoe Parrish and Craig Davis. The contingent of wide receivers got noticeably shorter coming out of their preseason game at Denver last Saturday. Donald Jones, Felton Huggins and Naaman Roosevelt were all added to the list of nicked up receivers for the Bills coming out of that game.
"By the end there we kind of ran out of receivers for the two minute stuff," said Ryan Fitzpatrick. "That's just part of it and you hope that none of those guys are going to be hurt more than a few days, but we'll see."
Jones appeared to suffer an undisclosed head injury after he was blindsided by Broncos rookie safety Rahim Moore along the Bills sideline while he was going up for a pass. Moore was immediately flagged for hitting a defenseless player in the head or neck area as the rules state.
The Bills second-year wideout laid motionless on his back for several minutes while the athletic training staff and team physicians tended to him. He was eventually helped to his feet and traveled home with the rest of the team the same night.
Roosevelt got his legged rolled up on by his defender after making a catch on a quick slant inside the Broncos 10-yard line in the fourth quarter and hobbled off. Huggins needed to be helped off as he limped to the sideline in the closing minutes of the game with an undisclosed leg injury.
Buffalo has 10 receivers on the current roster, but depending on the health of Davis and Parrish, who both did not play Saturday, the Bills could have just five healthy receivers on the practice field Monday afternoon.
"That's how it goes," said Fitzpatrick. "You've got to be able to go out there with who you have. The biggest thing for me is we've got to go to practice now with a greater focus knowing that we have a lot of work ahead of us. We have that much farther we have to go now because of what we did (in the game). We didn't put our best product out there and I think that was obvious. We've got guys that are willing to put in the work so I'm looking forward to it."
The most costly loss is Jones, a player that needs the reps with the first unit after recently being promoted to the second receiver role following the trade of Lee Evans. With the timing still not in sync lost time won't help.
"It won't (make it easier)," said head coach Chan Gailey. "Last year we had to adjust and our guys will adjust I believe. I think we could have everybody back for September 11th. I think that's a possibility, I don't know for sure, but I think that's a possibility to get most of them back by then. But you lose timing, you lose time on the practice field and you lose opportunities to improve and we need that."
Expected to take the reps in the number two receiver role now will be Craig Davis, provided he's recovered from his injury, and Marcus Easley.
"For the guys that are healthy we've got a bigger responsibility upon us to make up for the losses that we took," said Easley. "We wish those guys the best because I know when I was down those guys were behind me. So I'm still sticking behind them, but at the same time we've got to regroup and get ready for this week."