Bills Mafia could use a little bit of a pick me up these days, so there's this: Wide receiver Kelvin Benjamin did not suffer any ligament damage when he injured his right knee Sunday against the Los Angeles Chargers.
Even better, safety Micah Hyde should be fine, as well, after suffering a knee injury of his own in the 54-24 loss. Coach Sean McDermott provided those updates as part of his Monday press conference.
Benjamin's playing status in the near future is still up in the air, as the coach said his injury – which occurred on the fourth play of the game – was still being evaluated. Benjamin exited the locker room after Sunday's loss under his own power, with his right knee wrapped. He was hurt after making a 20-yard reception when Chargers safety Adrian Phillips hit him.
"It’s unfortunate, anytime you lose a player at all, let alone a player like Kelvin," McDermott said. "I was really excited to see him in the offense, to see him work with our quarterbacks and he was off, obviously, to a good start in the game, so that was unfortunate."
Offensive coordinator Rick Dennison said the Bills had about four or five plays from their first 15 scripted calls that were designed to go to Benjamin.
"He is a difference with his size," Dennison said.
Offensive coordinator Rick Dennison was in the coaches' booth Sunday as opposed to being on the field, where he'd been the first nine games.
"Just to try a different perspective," Dennison said. "When we were watching film the previous game on Monday, we talked as a staff." Quarterbacks coach David Culley and running backs coach Kelly Skipper "wanted to be on the field to work with those guys. Thought about it, thought I’d get a different perspective, then went up."
One thing Dennison saw from his perch that he liked was the performance of Travaris Cadet, who played in his first game with the Bills. Cadet stepped in for the injured Mike Tolbert as the No. 2 running back and led the team with six catches for 39 yards.
"No. 39’s skill set is closer to No. 25," Dennison says, referring to Cadet and starting running back LeSean McCoy, respectively. "He catches the ball real well. I think he did a fine job. I think he did a good job. As I stated a couple weeks ago, he seems bright, he caught on really fast, and they interchange."
Defensive coordinator Leslie Frazier was asked Monday about the performance of the two oldest players on defense, Lorenzo Alexander and Kyle Williams. Both play key roles in a front seven on defense that is struggling both to defend the run and pressure the opposing quarterback.
"Both of those guys have had great NFL careers," Frazier said. "They’ve played for a long time, and had a lot of success in our league. They’re at a point now where they provide not only good play for us on the field, but what they do in the locker room, what they do in our practice habits, how they handle meetings, is almost as important as what they do on the field.
"We have some young guys around them still learning how to participate in the National Football League. They’re still guys that can make plays for us, but they’re relevance in the locker room, in the meeting rooms, how they practice, means a lot to us as well."
In back-to-back weeks, the Bills have been burned by their opponent's No. 1 receiver. New Orleans' Michael Thomas had nine catches for 117 yards in Week 10, while Keenan Allen had 12 catches for 159 yard and two touchdowns for the Chargers on Sunday.
"We’ve got to get tighter coverage on the top guys and just try to do a better job all the way around," Frazier said.