Orchard Park, NY (WGR 550) -- Coming out of their Week Five loss to the Cleveland Browns, Buffalo Bills wide receiver Stevie Johnson couldn't even finish the contest due to a back injury. Not even being around team facilities for the past two days, the Bills aren't sure what to expect for Sunday.
Johnson has been excused the past two practices by head coach Doug Marrone, citing a death in the wide receiver's family that required him to travel out to Oakland, California for the funeral services. The veteran is scheduled to rejoin the team at some point on Friday, but the Bills won't have an answer on his status until the team's doctors can check how the injury has progressed.
"It's a tough call," Marrone said in regards to Johnson's availability against the Bengals. "He's working on getting treatment out there. I really don't know until he comes back and we're able to talk with him, see how he feels."
Due to the receiver flying back from the West Coast, he might not make it back in time for practice. Once he's back and the team sees and talks with him, Marrone said they should know if he'll play or not by Sunday. Johnson has yet to miss a start in his career due to an injury.
During Thursday's practice, cornerback Stephon Gilmore (wrist), running back C.J. Spiller (ankle), wide receiver Marquise Goodwin (hand), wide receiver Marcus Easley (ribs) and cornerback Ron Brooks (foot) were all limited participants.
Spiller's ankle injury is progressing much better than it had been a week ago according to the head coach. The runner wasn't able to move or cut on the ankle around game time last week, but has been able to do that so far through the first two days of practice this week.
Safety Jairus Byrd (feet) was once again a full participant at practice, but this time was joined by defensive lineman Kyle Williams (Achilles) on that list. Byrd took defensive reps in three-safety sets for the second day in a row during the media portion of practice.
The only other member of the active roster listed on the injury report is quarterback EJ Manuel, who is out with a sprained LCL (knee) and did not participate in any capacity. The Bills get back on the practice field Friday in Orchard Park.