C.J. Spiller Injury: Updates on Bills Star's Ankle, Likely Return Date
Buffalo Bills running back C.J. Spiller is battling through a nagging ankle injury this fall that has forced him to settle for a reduced role within the team's offense.
According to Mike Rodak of ESPN.com, Spiller's ankle injury is still not fully healed:
Despite being removed from the injury report this week, Buffalo Bills running back C.J. Spiller admitted Thursday that he still does not feel his ankle injury is fully behind him.
"[Sunday] it was still not where I wanted to be. We'll just continue to do the things we need to do," Spiller said. "[I'm] very close. I don't want to say, but I'm close."
"It's getting better. I'm able to practice more throughout the week. It's reacting well. I just have to continue to do the things I've been doing to get back to where I need to be," Spiller said.
ESPN's Mike Rodak confirms C.J. Spiller will play in Week 9:
Bills in actives: QB Thad Lewis, QB EJ Manuel, CB Justin Rogers, RB Ronnie Wingo, CB Brandon Smith, LB Ty Powell, G Antoine McClain— Mike Rodak (@mikerodak) November 3, 2013
From Adam Schefter of ESPN:
Buffalo HC Doug Marrone said Bills RB CJ Spiller expected to play Sunday vs KC.— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) October 31, 2013
From WGR550's Joe Buscaglia:
Marrone says he feels good about CJ Spiller's chances to play on Sunday versus the Chiefs. #Bills— Joe Buscaglia (@JoeBuscaglia) October 31, 2013
Marrone said Spiller's ankle has responded well to the rest. Spiller was limited today. #Bills— Joe Buscaglia (@JoeBuscaglia) October 31, 2013
Bills.com reporter Chris Brown has the latest on Spiller:
“It is a four to six week injury and it was only just that one week (I rested),” said Spiller. “And that’s four to six weeks if you’re not playing. I’ve been playing on it for four weeks. Having Sunday off just gave it more rest time and gave me more days to let it heal properly and hopefully quicker. Who knows how it’s going to feel?”
“That’s something we’ll discuss and keep on top of day to day,” he said. “It could take just that one game or it could take another game. It’s all about how I feel and how it reacts. I definitely can’t go back out there until I’m back to my normal self and doing what I’m accustomed to doing and what my teammates are accustomed to seeing me doing on Sundays.”
From Joe Buscaglia of WGR550.com:
CJ Spiller and Manny Lawson are both stretching with the team. Thad Lewis is not out here. Tuel taking first team reps. #Bills— Joe Buscaglia (@JoeBuscaglia) October 30, 2013
Mark Gaughan of The Buffalo News followed:
CJ Spiller limited in RB individual drills. Doing more than last week but not full.— Mark Gaughan (@gggaughan) October 30, 2013
From ESPN's Mike Rodak:
Marrone said Bills will test out Spiller's injury Monday or Tuesday. High-ankle sprain, officially— Mike Rodak (@mikerodak) October 28, 2013
Tim Graham of The Buffalo News provides a statement from C.J. Spiller discussing his latest injury:
"I wasn't ready," Spiller told me outside the locker room. "It was Coach Marrone's decision. I respected that.
"Everybody knew that I wanted to play. I wanted to help us win. But it was best for me so I can get back to playing normally."
From ESPN's Mike Rodak:
CJ Spiller is doubtful. Game-time decision per Marrone— Mike Rodak (@mikerodak) October 25, 2013
According to ESPN.com's Mike Rodak, Spiller has been held out of practice this week since touching the ball nine times in the team's Week 7 win over the Miami Dolphins.
But after missing practice Thursday, Spiller denied reports that his injury had resulted in a feud between he and head coach Doug Marrone, per Rodak:
I have no problem with Coach Marrone. I think we have a great relationship. Concerning my injury, I think we're both on the same page. He wants what's best for me, and he also wants what's best for this team. He's going to make the right decision. And I'm going to back him. So there's definitely no feud, no miscommunication.
Spiller injured his ankle in Buffalo's Week 4 win over the Baltimore Ravens. He carried the ball a season-high 23 times for 77 yards but limped off the field after spraining the ankle. According to Rodak, Spiller acknowledged that X-rays revealed no structural damage to the ankle.
The fourth-year playmaker hasn't missed a game since his rookie year in 2010 and has played in all seven of Buffalo's games this season, carrying the ball 90 times for 362 yards and a touchdown. He's also recorded 14 receptions for 36 yards.
Considering a less-than-100-percent Spiller is the Bills' second-leading rusher through the first seven weeks of the season, it appears that a low pain tolerance is the only thing that could possibly keep the former Clemson star out of the lineup.
Assuming he's using practice time to recover and saving his energy for game day, expect Spiller to continue to be effective with the ball in his hands moving forward.
The Bills, a team looking to win two straight games for the first time this season, will travel to New Orleans in Week 8 to play the Saints.
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