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Thursday, November 27, 2014

CJ Spiller injury opens door for Tashard Choice

The Bills are 2-1 through three games, but there’s one number they’d like to change: they’re now on to their third running back in three weeks.

C.J. Spiller hurt himself late in the first quarter against the Browns after landing on his shoulder when he was tackled following a reception. Spiller had gained about 22 yards on a dumpoff after a broken play, and he was tackled with his left shoulder going straight into the ground. He left immediately with a final stat line of 4 carries for 16 yards and 2 receptions for 42 yards and a touchdown, and he was replaced by Tashard Choice.

Spiller had a stellar first two games and was on his way to a third big game before the injury. He had rushed for 292 yards on 29 carries, good for an average of 10.1 yards per carry, and three touchdowns. He also had five receptions for 72 yards in his first two games. The former first-round pick was seeing lots of action after starter Fred Jackson got hurt in Week 1 against the Jets.

Jackson was hit in the knee in the second quarter against the Jets and left with a sprained LCL. The initial prognosis was that he would miss 3-8 weeks, and he’s said to be ahead of schedule. A report even suggests he could return for Week 4.

With Jackson’s status in question, it looks like Tashard Choice will be the lead back for the time being. Choice, whom the Bills claimed off waivers from the Redskins last season, had 91 rushing yards on 20 carries and eight yards on two catches against Cleveland. He’ll likely receive the bulk of the carries in Week 4 and could have some fantasy value for the next two weeks.

With Spiller looking like he’ll be out for some time, the Bills will need Fred Jackson back quickly. Choice isn’t nearly as good as Jackson or Spiller.



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