The Buffalo Bills are as banged up as any NFL team you'll find as Week 6 approaches.
As they get set to host the Cincinnati Bengals this Sunday, they may be down their top-three offensive players in addition to some key defensive guys as well. The biggest name possibly missing this week is running back LeSean McCoy.
One of the game's more explosive backs since 2010, McCoy enters this game with 6,938 career rushing yards (4.6 yards per carry), but his first year in Buffalo has been one to forget. Hamstring issues have limited him to just 146 yards on 43 carries (3.4 ypc) and seven catches for 88 yards with one touchdown.
McCoy has already missed two games, booth of which have come in the past two weeks. The Bills went 1-1 in those game whole scoring just 24 combined points against the New York Giants and Tennessee Titans. The good news for Buffalo is McCoy practiced in a limited capacity on Wednesday, though that may have been more to test where he is right now and not an indicator of him playing Sunday.
After all, his injury was revealed to be a Grade 2 hamstring strain that was expected to keep him out 3-4 weeks. Sunday will mark just the second full week since the injury happened, so it's very possible he won't play against the Bengals. Making matters worse for Buffalo is backup running back Karlos Williams has yet to practice since a concussion suffered in Week 4. It's looking less likely that he plays, which could leave third-stringer Boobie Dixon and the recently-signed (and former Bengals RB) Dan Herron getting the bulk of the running back snaps.
Another star offensive player on the mend is receiver Sammy Watkins. He's dealing with a calf issue after offseason hip surgery limited him in opening the season. Watkins practiced on a limited basis on Wednesday and Thursday and said after Wednesday's session that he plans to be in the lineup against the Bengals. As a rookie last year, Watkins caught 65 passes for 982 yards and six scores, which was really good considering the enigmatic play at quarterback between EJ Manuel and Kyle Orton.
Receiver and returner Percy Harvin is dealing with a hip injury that limited his participation in practice Wednesday but he was a full participant on Thursday. He hasn't missed a game this season while dealing with this issue for much of it and looks to be probable for Sunday. Tight end Charles Clay has been battling a calf injury that's limited in practice over the past few weeks, but he, too should be able to play this week.
We've already gone into detail about starting quarterback Tyrod Taylor and his ankle injury. However, Taylor got in a limited session on both Wednesday and Thursday. It's beginning to look more and more like he may actually play this Sunday, which would be a big boost to the Bills' offense. Taylor is completing 70-percent of his passes for 1,097 yards with nine touchdowns and four interceptions. Taylor has also rushed for 187 yards and two scores this season.
On defense, the most notable injury is to strong safety Aaron Williams. He suffered a neck injury in their Week 2 loss to the Patriots, and was just placed on I.R. with the designation to return on Wednesday. Williams racked up 158 total tackles and five interceptions in 29 games from 2013-14. He's arguably the Bills' best defensive back, and not having him is a big loss against a red-hot Bengals offense.