8:48pm: Alonso has in fact torn his ACL, reports Adam Schefter of ESPN (via Twitter). He will miss the 2014 season, and is facing a seven-to-nine month recovery.
8:45pm: Alonso will likely undergo an MRI tomorrow, tweets Albert Breer of NFL.com, who reiterates that “every indication” points toward a torn ACL.
8:28pm: The fear is that Alonso has torn his ACL, a team source tells Ian Rapoport of NFL.com (on Twitter).
8:12pm: Bills linebacker Kiko Alonso has injured his knee while working out in Oregon, according to a team statement. Per Buffalo general manager Doug Whaley, while the details of the injury are not yet known, “early indications are that it may be significant.” While an MRI has yet to be performed, the team probably wouldn’t feel comfortable releasing a statement on the matter if the injury wasn’t severe. In fact, a team source tells ESPN’s Adam Caplan (via Twitter) that it would be an upset if the Bills did receive good news on Alonso’s knee.
After being selected in the second round of the 2013 draft, Alonso went on to win Defensive Rookie of the Year after totaling 87 tackles, four interceptions, and two sacks. The 23-year-old was one of only three linebackers to play 100% of his team’s snaps, tweets Field Yates of ESPN.com. Though he played middle linebacker in Mike Pettine’s 3-4 defense last season, Alonso was being moved to the weak side in 2014, where he might’ve fit better in Jim Schwartz’s 4-3 scheme.
According to Mike Rodak of ESPN.com (Twitter link), third-year player Nigel Bradham is next up on the depth chart at the WILL position; he started 11 games in 2012 but only three last year. Preston Brown, the Bills’ third-round pick, is also an option, though he mostly played in the middle during college. Among unsigned players, our free agent tracker shows that Will Witherspoon and Michael Boley might be Buffalo’s best external options.