In 2009, the Buffalo Bills were plagued by an injury bug that left an astonishing 18 players on injured reserve at the end of the season, with many starters missing time throughout the year as well.
On top of that, the Bills seemed to have a different offensive line combination every week, complete with players scrounged up from the practice squads of various NFL teams.
This season seems to be getting off to the same start under a completely new training and coaching staff. The Bills have been without fifth round draft selection Ed Wang, an offensive tackle out of Virginia Tech, since early June after he suffered a high ankle sprain in rookie mini-camps.
Joe Klopfenstein, one of the midseason acquisitions from 2009, was placed on injured reserve on July 22, after suffering an undisclosed injury one week before the beginning of training camp.
Throughout training camps the problems continued, as Keith Ellison, Jon Corto, Paul Posluszny, Spencer Johnson, Danny Batten, Marcus Easley, Cornell Green, James Hardy, and Demetrius Bell have battled injury as well.
When the Bills faced the Washington Redskins for their first preseason game, they were without Eric Wood, Cornell Green, and Paul Posluszny, among others.
During the game, Marshawn Lynch suffered an ankle sprain, and Fred Jackson broke his hand, which will cause them both to miss most of the preseason. Rookie defensive end Alex Carrington, a third round draft pick, was also banged up during the game.
The problems didn't stop there.
The Bills' leading receiver against the Redskins—David Nelson, an undrafted free agent out of Florida—was carted off of the field after suffering an ankle injury during redzone work in practice.
Chan Gailey insisted that offensive linemen practice while wearing leg braces, which is a great initiative that this team needs; however, players are still getting hurt left and right.
The team added two different strength and conditioning trainers, one for the offensive and defensive linemen, and one for the skill position players, but this still hasn't seemed to help defer the injuries away from western New York.
It has been a while since the Bills have actually practiced in pads with full contact, as former coach Dick Jauron insisted on soft practicing that could have been a factor in last year's injuries, but rookies are getting hurt this season as well.
The injury curse on the Bills needs to be cured soon. The team is transitioning to a new offense and defense, and continuity is necessary for the players to learn their assignments with the players they will be on the field with.
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