Bills Coach Reveals OL Finished Last Game After Suffering ACL Tear

Tommy Doyle

Getty Tommy Doyle looks on before a Buffalo Bills game.

After a spate of injuries and heat-related ailments suffered during a 21-19 loss to the Miami Dolphins, the Buffalo Bills were down to their final offensive lineman.

As head coach Sean McDermott revealed this week, that last line of defense for quarterback Josh Allen had unknowingly suffered a season-ending injury when he finished out the game. The injury adds another challenge for a team already struck hard by injuries in this young season, missing a number of key players on both sides of the ball.

Young Offensive Lineman Out for the Season

Speaking to reporters this week, McDermott said backup offensive lineman Tommy Doyle realized during the game that he had suffered a knee or leg injury, but didn’t know the severity. Playing out of his normal tackle position to fill in for other injuries, Doyle gutted it out and stayed in through the end of the game.

“Unreal type of situation,” McDermott said. “I think he was our last linemen there that we had available to us and he’s playing guard and trying to go win the game.”

It wasn’t until after the team returned to Buffalo and Doyle met with doctors the next day that he learned he had been playing with a season-ending injury, McDermott revealed.

“I knew that he had had a knee injury or a leg injury,” McDermott said. “I go back on the plane on the way home just to check on the guys and I said ‘Tommy, how you doing?’ he’s like, ‘Ah, it’s fine, it’s nothing.’ And then next morning, I get the communication from our training staff that has a torn ACL and he’s out for the season.”

McDermott praised Doyle for his toughness.

“Obviously, that’s not normally how that goes,” the Bills coach said. “But just shows you how tough Tommy is and we really appreciate how he played through it.”

Bills Dealing With Injuries

The Bills are going into Sunday’s game against the Baltimore Ravens without a number of key players. Rookie cornerback Christian Benford, already pushed into early action because All-Pro cornerback Tre’Davious White is rehabbing a torn ACL, is out with a broken hand that required surgery. Defensive tackle Jordan Phillips had been ruled out with a hamstring injury as well.

Many other players were listed as questionable on the team’s final injury report of the week, including wide receiver Gabe Davis, tight end Dawson Knox, cornerback Dane Jackson, defensive tackle Ed Oliver and safety Jordan Poyer.

The Bills did bring in some help this week, signing former All-Pro cornerback Xavier Rhodes to add depth to the depleted secondary. Rhodes said he was excited to join the team.

“I’ve been doing this for 10 years and it’s just in me to get back out on the field, be in this brotherhood, and just being around the guys,” Rhodes said.

“These guys, it’s just a family and once you have family on a team, the sky’s the limit,” Rhodes said. “With the communication that goes on when I first got here with the defense and the communication with offense – I’ve been around a defense and offense like that before, so to see that, I know that the sky’s the limit.”

But Rhodes won’t be able to bring immediate relief to the Bills. McDermott revealed on Friday that he was nursing a hamstring injury and likely wouldn’t be able to play against the Ravens.

Read More