ORCHARD PARK, NY – Bills starting cornerback Dane Jackson was evaluated for a neck injury at a local hospital Monday night after a scary collision with a teammate during Buffalo’s 41-7 win over the Tennessee Titans.
Jackson has full range of motion in his extremities, according to the Bills, and received a CT scan and an X-ray at Erie County Medical Center.
“Still waiting to hear back and obviously praying for Dane and everyone else [the Bills’ injured players]”, coach Sean McDermott said after the game. “You go from the real part of it here; you go from being a coach to just being a human when I’m out there watching him get loaded into the ambulance. It’s a real moment.”
The accidental collision occurred while Bills linebacker Tremaine Edmunds made a second-down tackle on Titans wide receiver Treylon Burks with less than a minute left in the first half. Jackson’s head seemed to snap back after making contact with Edmund’s helmet.
“Definitely a tough play. Just kind of the receiver was still looking up, just trying to finish the play,” Edmunds said. “A situation that I obviously didn’t do on purpose. I would never try to do something like that to my teammate, but like I said … the receiver was still up, I was just trying to get him to the ground and unfortunately I end up beat Dane.”
The game was delayed for nearly 10 minutes as the team’s trainers tended to Jackson, who was moving his legs. He was then put on a stretcher and driven through the stadium tunnel in an ambulance.
His teammates surrounded Jackson as he was tended to, with Edmunds close by almost the entire time.
“Just to see him move, just to see him give a thumbs up on his way out — that obviously helped a lot of us. … It eased a lot of our minds,” Edmunds said.
McDermott said he had a moment to speak with Jackson in the Bills tunnel before the ambulance left the stadium.
Jackson, a third-year player who began the season starting in place of an injured Tre’Davious White, had three tackles Monday and last week recorded an interception in the Bills’ win over the Los Angeles Rams.
After Jackson’s injury, rookies Christian Benford and Kaiir Elam took over in his place. They had rotated opposite Jackson to start the season.
Bills safety Damar Hamlin is a close friend of Jackson and said that while the moment on the field was difficult, he received an encouraging response from Jackson.
“It felt terrible. It felt like one of my brothers was down,” Hamlin said. “And with the severity of how it happened, it just made it even more extreme. Because it didn’t seem like just [a] common damage. But one time I talked to him, one time he told me he was good on the field — we got that kind of bond where he’s going to let me know if something happens, so I pray for him and I know he will go well.”
As for other Bills injuries, starting safety Micah Hyde was ruled out after suffering a neck injury late in the third quarter when Tennessee’s Ryan Tannehill connected with receiver Robert Woods on first down. Hyde was examined on the field for a couple of minutes before he walked off under his own power and entered the blue medical tent.
Hyde was later taken off the track on the back of a wagon. Backup Jaquan Johnson replaced him in the game.
“It was a weird play, wasn’t it,” safety Jordan Poyer said. “I texted Micah, he said he’s fine. Dane said he was fine too. Just praying for those guys.”
Bills center Mitch Morse missed part of the game with a right elbow injury but was able to return. Linebacker Matt Milano (strain) and defensive tackle Jordan Phillips (hamstring) both left the game with injuries while numerous backups entered. Wide receiver Gabe Davis missed Monday’s game with an ankle injury.
McDermott had no further update on the Bills’ injuries.