Right after Sunday's 38-7 loss at New England, rookie linebacker Paul Posluszny expressed optimism that he could return at some point this season, and even play with a special cast, after breaking his forearm.
But coach Dick Jauron was much more realistic.
"I think Paul, just by the nature of who he is, is very optimistic," Jauron said. "And certainly he wanted to play and probably wanted to continue playing with it. I think I'm closer to the truth."
The hard truth is that Posluszny's first NFL season lasted just three games as he was placed on season-ending injured reserve by the team after undergoing surgery Monday. He's the fourth player to be lost for the season due to a serious injury and third on defense, joining cornerback Jason Webster (broken forearm) and safety Ko Simpson (broken ankle).
Buffalo may have considered waiting for Posluszny to heal to the point where he could try and play with a protective cast, but their sheer number of injuries (10 overall) made it necessary for them to free up a roster space.
Posluszny's injury leaves Buffalo with just four healthy linebackers and they may have to add another one this week as they prepare to host the New York Jets Sunday.
Angelo Crowell or John DiGiorgio can shift to middle linebacker and veteran backup Mario Haggan can play one of the outside spots. But the team would rather not have to use Haggan or Josh Stamer on regular downs because it depletes their special teams more. But with Keith Ellison (high ankle) and Coy Wire (knee sprain) still down, options are few.
"We'll definitely have to do something," Jauron said. "We're just kind of running out of guys. We'll look and see who's available and decide if we need to move in that direction. We'll reassess the nature of our guys that are injured, when we expect them back but I don't think that's going to move. We've got to make some decisions here in the next couple of days."
--QB J.P. Losman will miss a minimum of two games with a sprained knee ligament. He felt the low shot that New England DT Vince Wilfork took at his planted left leg was cheap and the Bills are hoping Wilfork will be fined.
--RB Marshawn Lynch is averaging 19 carries per game and 4.0 yards per carry. But he still has only five catches.
--RB Dwayne Wright, a rookie out of Fresno State, earned his first NFL carries in Sunday's loss to New England. He ran six times for 36 yards, including three first downs. That production could earn him some carries above veteran backup Anthony Thomas down the road.
--TE Kevin Everett, who has been transferred to a hospital in Houston to be near his loved ones, continues to make remarkable strides after suffering a spinal cord injury on Sept. 9 against Denver. His doctors report that he is now able to sit up in bed for extended periods and that he can lift one arm.
--WR Lee Evans has caught a pass in 46 consecutive games, third longest streak in Bills history, but that's little solace. The four-year veteran and the team's No. 1 receiver has just five catches for 29 yards and there's no belief he'll get on track anytime soon with starting QB J.P. Losman sidelined with a sprained knee.
--WR Josh Reed, who returned to the lineup last Sunday after recovering from a thigh bruise, could be a favorite target for rookie QB Trent Edwards Sunday at home against the Jets. Edwards will be looking to get the ball out quickly to Reed on crossing routes from the slot.
--LB Paul Posluszny, the team's second-round pick out of Penn State, has been lost for the season with a broken forearm. He was second on the club with 26 tackles.
--PK Rian Lindell has attempted just two fields so far, making one.
Game Balls and Goats