Chiefs coach Andy Reid has not been shy about using three-tight end formations this season, but he had this weapon stripped from him during Sunday’’s pregame warmups.
That was when Demetrius Harris, his third tight end, fractured his foot. After the game, Harris — who has caught three passes for 20 yards this season — was in the locker room on crutches.
“He’s done for a few weeks at least,” Reid said.
Meanwhile, running back Cyrus Gray — a key special teams player — tore his ACL on Sunday. Reid said he’s done for the season.
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A handful of other players got banged up Sunday. Running back Jamaal Charles left Sunday’s game briefly with a stinger, while tight end Anthony Fasano suffered a knee contusion toward the end of the game. Receiver Junior Hemingway has a hip contusion.
Bowe breaks out
Receiver Dwayne Bowe posted season highs in catches (eight) and yards (93) on Sunday while continuing his role as quarterback Alex Smith’s most trusted wide receiver.
“That’s the role right now,” Bowe said, “and it’s working. You can’t be a selfish player playing team sport. Once you realize that, once you get your group to realize that, you get Ws. I think we found ourselves. We know what we’ve got to do and how to approach games. It’s been working for us.”
Bowe also had a season-high in targets with 12. His 93 receiving yards on the day give him a total of 6,908 scrimmage yards in his career, moving him into sole possession of sixth place on the Chiefs all-time scrimmage yards chart.
Houston goes without a sack
For the first time in nearly two months, Chiefs outside linebacker Justin Houston did not record a sack in a game.
Houston, who had an NFL-leading 12 sacks entering Sunday’s contest, had gone six straight games with a sack. He credited Bills quarterback Kyle Orton for getting the ball out early.
“It’s like that sometimes,” Houston said. “I think I could have done better on a couple of my rushes. Orton’s a veteran quarterback, he did a great job working that pocket.”
Vickerson draws penalty
With Buffalo leading 13-10 early in the fourth quarter, the Bills lined up to go for it on a fourth-and-1 at their own 46-yard line.
But if the Bills planned on a running a play, that possibility quickly got wiped out when rookie right tackle Seantrel Henderson flinched ever so slightly and was whistled for a false start.
Bills erupted in anger after the stadium replay didn’t reveal movement, but Chiefs defensive tackle Kevin Vickerson — who was lined up across from Henderson — insists he knew what he saw.
“I was just looking at the position I was in, I knew the situation,” Vickerson said. “The first vthing I’m looking for is something to move. His knee flinched.”
Vickerson fired off the line of scrimmage and started pointing at Henderson when the whistle blew.
“That’s why I was pointing at him, because I saw it,” Vickerson said. “That turned out good for us.”
Wilson steps up
It looks like rookie receiver Albert Wilson takes his role as punter Dustin Colquitt’s personal protector seriously.
On his first play of the season at the position Sunday — he came in for the injured Cyrus Gray — he hustled all the way downfield after Colquitt got the punt off and was the first one to greet Bills punt returner Leodis McKelvin. Fullback Anthony Sherman soon forced a game-changing fumble, which the Chiefs recovered.
“Special teams is about effort,” Wilson said. “I was just going out there giving 100 percent.”
Wilson says special teams coach Dave Toub thought he did a good job on the play.
“I feel like he’s got a lot of hope (for me), he stays on me,” Wilson said. “I’m just learning, trying to figure out my role, do the best with what they’ve given me.”
Owens, Mays return
Cornerback Chris Owens (knee) and Joe Mays (wrist) each returned to action Sunday after missing a fairly significant portion of time with injuries.
Owens had missed the last three games with a knee injury, while Mays has been out all season since undergoing preseason wrist surgery.
Cornerback Phillip Gaines, who had started the Chiefs’ previous two games, was active but did not start. He was dealing with ankle and quadriceps injuries but was listed as questionable on the injury report.
The Chiefs’ inactive players were quarterback Aaron Murray, receiver Donnie Avery, safety Daniel Sorensen, cornerback Jamell Fleming, center Eric Kush, guard Laurent Duvernay-Tardif and linebacker Josh Martin.
Avery missed his fifth straight game after undergoing core muscle surgery, while Fleming missed his second straight game.
The Bills’ inactive players were receiver Mike Williams, safety Jerome Couplin III, cornerback Ron Brooks, running back Phillip Tanner, linebacker Randell Johnson, guard Cyril Richardson and receiver Marcus Easley.
▪ Jamaal Charles’ 98 rushing yards and 20 receiving yards gave him 118 scrimmage yards on the day for a total of 8,460 in his career, which moves him into second place on that list.
▪ Charles’ 39-yard touchdown gives him six rushing TDs and eight total TDs in 2014. He also has 27 total touchdowns in the last two seasons to lead the NFL.
▪ A.J. Jenkins’ 27-yard grab was his longest of the season.