The quick turn around and playing a Thursday Night Game means that the players who were unable to play in Sunday’s game may also be unable to play Thursday. For the Browns, that is Shawn Lauvao and with the Bills, it is Jairus Byrd. Thursday games tend to be sloppy and just bad football, but the short week could have a big impact on those two key players being able to play this week.
Nov. 15, 2012; Orchard Park, NY, USA; Buffalo Bills free safety Jairus Byrd (31) runs the ball after a fumble recovery against the Miami Dolphins at Ralph Wilson Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Timothy T. Ludwig-USA TODAY Sports
Both Lauvao and Byrd were listed as questionable and were both ruled out as game time decisions. Lauvao would be a welcome addition and get the Browns back to the unit they were planning on having at the start of the season. It would seem like having an extra four days would be enough to get back on the field for Lauvao, but it is up in the air. With a talented defensive line including Kyle Williams, Marcel Dareus, and Mario Williams, the Browns can definitely use all hands on deck.
With Byrd, he was out with a foot injury and was a last minute decision not to play. Byrd is the most talented member of the Bills’ secondary and potentially not having him could be huge, especially with how well Jordan Cameron and Josh Gordon are playing. Byrd’s ability to make big plays on the back end of that defense punishes quarterbacks who make mistakes over the middle of the field.
It may end up being a small detail in this game Thursday as both Byrd and Lauvao may play and potentially play well, but it would definitely be easier if this game were on a Sunday and both could be counted on to be in the lineup and get as healthy as possible. If they can get these guys on the field and not have them suffer a setback, they can get really healthy in the week and a half before they play their next game.