DETROIT — Tests on Buffalo Bills star pass rusher Von Miller’s injured right knee showed no tear to the anterior cruciate ligament, a person with direct knowledge of the injury told The Associated Press.
Coach Sean McDermott has already ruled Miller out of next week's game against the New England Patriots. The person who detailed Miller's test results spoke to The AP on the condition of anonymity because the team has not revealed that information.
ESPN first reported the test results on Miller.
McDermott on Friday declined to discuss the severity or nature of the injury sustained in a 28-25 win over the Detroit Lions on Thanksgiving.
“We’re just going to take it one week at a time,” McDermott said. “There will be more testing and whatnot that gets involved. But I’ll just keep it at that for now.”
Miller was hurt late in the second quarter. He was pushing his way through the right side of the Lions’ line when his knee bent awkwardly at the same time center Frank Ragnow stepped on Miller’s right ankle.
Miller walked off the field on his own, and he was examined briefly on the sideline before being carted off. The Bills finished the game with just three defensive ends. Greg Rousseau and A.J. Epenesa didn't play because of ankle injuries.
Miller is the NFL’s active leader in sacks with 123 1/2, and he ranks 19th on the career list. He leads Buffalo with eight sacks, which was tied for 10th in the NFL entering this weekend.
“He’s a future Hall of Famer for a reason,” McDermott said, when asked how big of an impact Miller’s absence presents. “That said, we’ve got to move forward this week. And the person or the people responsible to step in and step up have got to do the job, and that’s the way it goes.”
McDermott said Rousseau and Epenesa are improving, but couldn’t say whether they can play next week. He said the same applies to middle linebacker Tremaine Edmunds (groin/heel) and center Mitch Morse (elbow/ankle), who both did not play on Thursday as well as left tackle Dion Dawkins, who hurt his ankle against Detroit.
McDermott said cornerback Christian Benford is week to week after hurting his oblique.
Buffalo (8-3) has won two straight since a two-game skid, and it travels to play Patriots (6-5) on Thursday. The Bills are scheduled to return to practice on Sunday.
The Bills made a major splash by signing the 33-year-old Miller to a six-year contract in March after he won his second Super Bowl with the Los Angeles Rams. Miller spent his first 10-plus years in Denver before being traded to Los Angeles.
The injury could be the second significant one for Miller in three years. He missed the entire 2020 season with an ankle injury. Otherwise, he’s proven durable, playing 15 or more games in 10 of his 12 seasons. The injury is to the same knee that forced Miller to miss seven games in 2013.
His injury will further test the depth of a Bills defense that hasn’t been healthy all season.
The injuries have depleted Buffalo’s secondary in particular. Starting safety Micah Hyde is on injured reserve after hurting his neck in Week 2. And Buffalo finally welcomed back starting cornerback Tre’Davious White on Thursday. He was eased in by playing 16 snaps against the Lions in his first game since tearing a ligament in his left knee a year ago on Thanksgiving.
“I thought he looked really strong. He looked really good. Moved well. Played physical,” McDermott said of White. “I think it was a good step in the right direction there.”
The strains have shown on defense, which has allowed 300-plus yards in each of its past seven games. It’s the worst stretch since an eight-game run in 2017 during McDermott’s first season as coach.
Buffalo has allowed 21 or more first downs in eight straight games, the worst such run in franchise history.
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