Chiefs linebacker Justin Houston was scheduled to undergo MRI test Monday to determine the severity of his left knee injury sustained in Sunday’s 30-22 victory over the Bills.
Coach Andy Reid seemed upbeat Monday that Houston didn’t suffer a season-ending injury and said that it was a posterior cruciate ligament sprain based on initial tests. Houston had a similar injury in the playoff loss to the Colts after the 2013 season.
Because that injury occurred in the Chiefs’ final game, there’s no telling how much time Houston would have missed, and Reid didn’t hazard a guess.
“I couldn’t tell you,” Reid said. “I want to see what the MRI tells us.”
David Chao, a former NFL team physician, said PCL injuries typically have a one-to-four week recovery period. Chao also said PCL injuries often do not require surgery and that players with the injury could play with a brace.
Houston’s injury and a back injury to Dee Ford suffered before the Chargers game last week affects the Chiefs’ depth at outside linebacker.
Frank Zombo replaced Houston after Chiefs safety Ron Parker inadvertently leg-whipped Houston in the first half of Sunday’s 30-22 victory over Buffalo at Arrowhead Stadium. Dezman Moses also got snaps at outside linebacker.
Houston’s injury isn’t the Chiefs’ only concern. Two offensive linemen left Sunday’s game because of injuries. Tackle Eric Fisher went down in the second quarter because of what was termed a neck sprain. Center Mitch Morse left because of a concussion.
Left guard Jeff Allen had an ankle injury and left the game with his return announced as questionable. But he returned to block on Cairo Santos’ long field-goal attempt at the end of the first half and played in the second half.
Donald Stephenson, a former starter, finished the game at left tackle. Zach Fulton finished the game at center.
If the Chiefs wind up short-handed on the offensive line this week, they could elevate Jarrod Pughsley from the practice squad. Pughsley, a second-year pro, can play tackle or guard, and was close to making the team out of training camp.
Another offensive lineman, guard Ben Grubbs, started the first seven games before sustaining a neck injury. His timetable hasn’t changed. “Taking it day by day,” Reid said.
There are two other offensive linemen on the practice squad: rookies Laurence Gibson from Virginia Tech and Michael Liedtke from Illinois State.
Despite the injuries, the Chiefs put together one of their most impressive victories of the season. The Houston-less defense held the Bills to six second-half points and Tamba Hali turned in the Chiefs’ biggest defensive play in the third quarter with his sack of Tyrod Taylor and forced fumble.
With a makeshift offensive line, the Chiefs continued to put up numbers. Running back Spencer Ware gained 70 of his 114 yards after halftime.