1:58pm: The Bills have officially signed Tanner, announcing that Spiller has been placed on injured reserve with the designation to return, meaning his season isn’t necessarily over yet.
1:06pm: With C.J. Spiller and Fred Jackson sidelined due to injuries, the Bills will sign running back Phillip Tanner to help fortify their banged-up backfield, reports Aaron Wilson of the Baltimore Sun (Twitter link). The team has yet to announce the signing or the corresponding move, but Spiller looks like a candidate for the injured reserve list, assuming Buffalo doesn’t expect him to return this season.
Tanner, 26, recorded 149 rushing yards and two touchdowns on 56 carries during three years with the Cowboys, along with 93 receiving yards on nine catches. The Middle Tennessee State product, who also contributed on special teams in 2013, spent time with the Colts and Cowboys this summer, but was ultimately waived by Dallas during roster cutdowns at the end of the preseason.
For the Bills, Spiller is expected to miss most or all of the season, while Jackson will likely be sidelined for the next three or four weeks. In their absence, Anthony Dixon and Bryce Brown figure to carry the majority of the load for the team, but perhaps Tanner can insert himself into that mix as well if he looks good in practice.
As Jim Wyatt of the Tennessean tweets, the Bills had interest in signing running back Antonio Andrews off the Titans’ practice squad. However, Andrews wanted to remain in Tennessee and the team decided to promote him to its active roster to avoid letting him get away, forcing the Bills to look elsewhere.