Kelvin Benjamin returns to practice, expects decision on his availability soon - The Buffalo News

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Kelvin Benjamin returns to practice, expects decision on his availability soon

The Bills are already down one wide receiver for Sunday's game against Indianapolis. It's still up in the air whether they'll be down another.

Kelvin Benjamin, inactive the past two weeks with a meniscus tear, participated in practice a day after teammate Jordan Matthews was placed on injured reserve. Benjamin was limited but was able to participate in some drills, including ones that featured running routes and cutting.

"I felt good today," Benjamin said. "We’re just taking it day by day. I think me, the coaches, the training staff, we’re just going to come to a decision at the end of the week."

While he's feeling better physically, Benjamin said the toughest hurdle is the mental side of returning from an injury of this severity.

"Just trying to play football and not worry about the injury," Benjamin said. "Don't focus on the knee, just go out there and play."

With a depleted wide receiver corps, LeSean McCoy and Charles Clay's contributions to the passing game could be invaluable against the Colts. Zay Jones, Deonte Thompson and Andre Holmes are likely the top three wideouts if Benjamin is unable to suit up.

"No matter the situation, this group and this team has to keep the most positive mindset going into it, really trusting the pieces we have around us," Jones said.

Shuffling the wide receiver unit is nothing new for the Bills, as the team hasn't seen Benjamin, Matthews and Jones on the field in the same game since Benjamin was acquired from the Panthers on Oct. 31. That stretch featured two games where the Bills accumulated less than 140 yards through the air.

"It's a lot of adversity to overcome, but it's something we're surely capable of doing," Jones said. "We've won games with these changes going on, so I'm not going to use people coming and going as an excuse for things. As an offense, we know we need to play better."

Matthews' injury also means an opportunity for Brandon Reilly, who was called up from the practice roster Tuesday. The former walk-on at Nebraska was the star of the preseason, leading the team in receptions (11) and yards (139). Wednesday he said he wasn't sure what the plan was for him yet.

"They just said, 'Make sure you know all three receiver positions,' which I do, 'and special teams,'" Reilly said. "Whatever's thrown at me, I'm ready for it."

Losing weapons adds another complication to an offense dealing with ambiguity at starting quarterback. Tyrod Taylor hasn't practiced this week after suffering a patellar tendon contusion in the Patriots game. If he can't play, Nathan Peterman is in line for his second career start.

"We've got to go out there and help out whichever quarterback is playing," Holmes said. "That philosophy hasn't changed from day one this year."

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