Injury Analysis: Bills-Patriots

BFR's Charlie Specht takes a look at the injuries heading into New England...

The Bills should be decidedly relieved that their newest starter, left tackle Demetrius Bell, returned to practice Wednesday after being out with a back injury. After the release of starting left tackle Langston Walker, Buffalo will be depending on Bell's healed back to protect quarterback Trent Edwards against the Patriots defensive line.

If something should happen, though, Kirk Chambers, who the Bills reclaimed off waivers, will be expected to step in.

After being held out of practice Sunday with a thigh injury, defensive tackle Spencer Johnson practiced the rest of the week.

The Patriots, fresh off their trade of defensive end Richard Seymour (who has still not reported to Raiders camp), had no new injury news. While this is fairly common for the season opener, it will be interesting to see how forthcoming head coach Bill Belichick is with injuries even as the season progresses.

The biggest injury news for the Pats is undoubtedly the return of Tom Brady, who missed last season with a torn ACL and officially reclaimed the helm of the offense from Matt Cassel. Brady's injury became infected and his rehab complicated, but all signs point to good health for the Pats' signal caller. Albeit with a scare against Washington, and mammoth tackle Albert Haynesworth, Brady appears to be ready for the season. Brady was body-slammed by Haynesworth into the turf, suffering a shoulder injury. Hysteria quickly faded back to calm, as the injury turned out to be nothing substantial.

As for that knee? After getting knocked around a bit this preseason, Brady believes he is ready to pick up where he left off a year ago.

"I'm very happy that I was able participate in the preseason this year," Brady told the AP. "That was really important to get out there and play and get a feel for the game."

How this bodes well for Buffalo remains to be seen. Brady has a dominant track record against the Bills. At 100 percent, he'll be tough to stop.

Charlie Specht is an analyst for Contact him at

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