The Bills got brutal news on star safety Micah Hyde, who will be out for the season after suffering a neck injury.
With Hyde placed on injured reserve and out for the rest of the season, Buffalo will need to replace their star safety by committee. Jordan Poyer will surely play a massive role in the communication at that position, but he can only do so much.
Poyer missed practice this week but is listed as questionable on the depth chart. Against Miami, Buffalo could be very shorthanded in their secondary.
“We’re just going to take [Poyer’s status] one day at a time,” coach Sean McDermott said at a news conference Friday. “He’s one of those that are in that group in there, we’ve got a couple of those guys, maybe three or four, that remains to be seen what they’ll be able to get done on Sunday. I’ll know a little bit more today. It may not still be definitive after today, but we’ll take it one day at a time.”
Bills: Who must step up with Micah Hyde out?
The easy answer here is Damar Hamlin, the second-year player out of Pittsburgh.
Hamlin is a former cornerback turned safety, so the position is still fairly new to him. But Hamlin is a quick learner and has already made an impact in Buffalo.
Expect teams — such as the Dolphins — to attack Hamlin’s side of the field early and often. This also means the Bills must employ more zone coverage schemes to help Hamlin early on, rather than leaving him out to dry in a man-to-man coverage situation, minus obvious blitzing downs.
“At the end of the day, you have to trust the guys that could potentially step into roles, if someone is not able to play, that they’ll be able to handle the game plan,” defensive coordinator Leslie Frazier said.
While the Bills can protect him to some extent, it’ll be up to Hamlin to step up when called upon.