Saints' Alvin Kamara Ruled Out for Thanksgiving Game vs. Bills with Knee Injury

Adam WellsNovember 24, 2021

New Orleans Saints running back Alvin Kamara (41) sits the bench during the first half of an NFL football game against the Atlanta Falcons, Sunday, Nov. 7, 2021, in New Orleans. (AP Photo/Derick Hingle)
AP Photo/Derick Hingle

New Orleans Saints running back Alvin Kamara was ruled out of Thursday's Thanksgiving Day game against the Buffalo Bills because of a knee injury.

It'll mark the dual-threat back's third straight absence. He last played in a Nov. 7 loss to the Atlanta Falcons.

As the 5-5 Saints have navigated a series of injuries and inconsistent quarterback play, Kamara has been essential in keeping the offense afloat.

The four-time Pro Bowler leads the team in touches (178), rushing yards (530), yards from scrimmage (840) and total touchdowns (seven).

Kamara's absence highlights the ongoing issues the Saints have had on offense. Quarterback Jameis Winston is out for the season with a torn ACL. Michael Thomas will also miss the entire year because of ongoing issues after his offseason ankle surgery.

Head coach Sean Payton will turn to Mark Ingram II as his lead rusher against the Bills if he's active. He's questionable with a knee injury of his own.

The Saints brought Ingram back in an Oct. 29 trade with the Houston Texans. He spent the first eight years of his career with the organization. He's the Saints' all-time leader in rushing touchdowns (51) and rushing yards (6,212). 

Second-year back Tony Jones (22 carries, 79 yards) would lead the backfield if Ingram is also ruled out.