Bills’ Von Miller Avoids ACL Tear; Return Timetable Uncertain

Some good news emerged on the Von Miller front Friday morning, though this situation remains murky. The standout Bills pass rusher avoided an ACL tear, according to’s Adam Schefter (on Twitter) and has a chance to return this season.

However, more tests are coming to determine how much time he will miss. Concern remains regarding the meniscus in Miller’s injured knee,’s Ian Rapoport tweets. At some point, a surgery will take place, Rapoport adds. But it is uncertain if Miller will go under the knife soon or in the offseason. The timetable here will obviously have a major impact on Buffalo’s pass rush the rest of the way.

Miller is not expected to make any decisions for a week or two, per Schefter, who adds he is not a lock to return this season (Twitter link). This December decision — have surgery or keep going, likely with a brace — promises to be a seminal moment for the Bills, who have run into a spate of injuries in recent weeks.

Thursday’s injury led to the future Hall of Famer being transported off the Ford Field turf via cart, though Sal Capaccio of WGR 550 notes Miller did not exit the locker room needing crutches or any assistance (Twitter link). Initially, a knee sprain surfaced as a rumored diagnosis. Miller, 33, is expected to miss time. Sean McDermott said Friday that Miller will miss the Bills’ Week 13 game against the Patriots.

This could be a brutal blow for Buffalo, but Miller dodging an ACL tear — an injury that would have shut him down until at least training camp — represents good news for the Super Bowl-contending team.

Miller has a history of major knee trouble, but that came nine years ago. In December 2013, Miller suffered a torn ACL. This injury is to the same knee. That capped a turbulent year for the then-Broncos pass rusher, who began the season serving a six-game substance-abuse ban. Miller, however, returned to top form quickly and put himself on track for Canton beginning in 2014. The former No. 2 overall pick made the Pro Bowl in 2014 — a 14-sack season — and was invited to five more Pro Bowls from 2015-19. While a severe ankle injury prevented Miller from playing in 2020, he returned to form again after a midseason trade to the Rams last year.

Following Miller’s boost to the Rams’ Super Bowl LVI cause, the Bills convinced him to make the rare (for high-profile free agents) trek to western New York in March. Buffalo’s Super Bowl quest played into the eight-time Pro Bowler’s decision. Despite a reduced workload (61% defensive snap rate) compared to the full-time roles he played in Denver and Los Angeles, Miller has already racked up eight sacks and made an impact on the Bills’ younger pass rushers. The Bills being without this era’s best edge rusher the rest of the way would certainly will impact their Super Bowl aspirations. If Miller does return, gauging his post-injury form will be important.

Buffalo has played without second-year edge Greg Rousseau recently, though the 2021 first-round pick is not on IR. The team was also without Tremaine Edmunds and Jordan Poyer against Detroit. The team did get top cornerback Tre’Davious White back in Week 12 and saw Kaiir Elam return after missing two games. Micah Hyde is on IR with a neck injury and is not expected to return this season.

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