The Buffalo Bills‘ offense didn’t exactly light up the scoreboard in their season-opening loss to the Baltimore Ravens. Buffalo was held to 160 yards of total offense, its lowest total since 2006, when the Bears held them to 145 yards of offense. It was the 25th time in Buffalo’s franchise history it recorded 160 total yards or fewer, per Pro-Football-Reference.
If you thought that was the worst news of the day, you’re wrong. According to a report from the New York Daily News, Bills receiver Sammy Watkins (who finished with four catches for 43 yards) was experiencing “severe discomfort” in his foot during and after the game, and needed to have it X-rayed afterward to ensure it wasn’t broken again (which it wasn’t). He initially broke the foot back in April, though it wasn’t reported until May. The discomfort is reportedly so bad that it could knock Watkins out for several weeks, depending on how it feels over the next few days.
Per CBS Sports NFL Insider Jason La Canfora, doctors have advised Watkins that there is no procedure he can undergo and it is a simply pain threshold issue related to the screws he had inserted in his foot. He is experimenting with different types of cleats to try to alleviate the problem but it is something that continues to dog him. In a short week — Buffalo plays the Jets on Thursday — team sources say the Bills will likely rest him a few days and then assess his condition midweek to determine Watkins’ level of discomfort.
In a Buffalo offense not exactly teeming with playmakers, Watkins is the best option they have. He’s Tyrod Taylor‘s clear No. 1 wideout and likely the best overall player on the offense. LeSean McCoy is a big-play threat as well out of the backfield, but there’s nobody that threatens defenses on the outside in the manner Watkins does. Losing him for any period of time would be a huge blow to a team that really needs its offense to cover up for the disastrous offseason the defense had.
The Bills lost several players from their for extended periods due to injury and suspension (Shaq Lawson, Reggie Ragland, Marcell Dareus) and are already coming off a poor defensive season. With a schedule that sees them play the Jets on Thursday and then the Cardinals and Patriots the two weeks after that, the Bills need their offense to be firing on all cylinders to keep up. If Watkins is out or limited in any way, that may prove tougher than expected.
Source: CBS Sports / Report: Sammy Watkins’ foot causing severe discomfort, could miss weeks