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Wednesday, September 24, 2008
Bills should cope with Parrish injury


 
 AP Photo/David Duprey
 Roscoe Parrish is an explosive kick returner, but the Bills have plenty of options at their disposal until Parrish recovers from injury.

Posted by ESPN.com's Tim Graham

The Buffalo Bills have lost receiver and dangerous punt returner Roscoe Parrish for four to six weeks after undergoing thumb ligament surgery.

His loss will be felt, but the Bills should be fine without him.

Parrish has been a slick weapon for the Bills and produced perhaps the season's most scintillating play so far, spinning his way through the Seattle Seahawks for a 63-yard touchdown return in Week 1.

Parrish was instrumental Sunday in helping the Bills score 10 fourth-quarter points to beat the Oakland Raiders. He suffered the injury earlier in the game but made a 14-yard touchdown reception and a 16-yard catch on the Bills' final drive to set up Rian Lindell's field goal as time expired.

But the Bills have an embarrassment of riches in the return game.

Cornerback Terrence McGee is a former Pro Bowler for his kick-return abilities. Rookie cornerback Leodis McKelvin, the eighth overall draft pick, is a blistering punt returner who broke all sorts of NCAA records at Troy. Backup running back Fred Jackson also might be considered.

The Bills will need another receiver to emerge until Parrish gets back, but their passing game has been balanced with Lee Evans and Josh Reed. Parrish is not the go-to guy.

Rookie James Hardy and second-year reserve Justin Jenkins could become more frequent targets, but the Bills also love seventh-round draft pick Steve Johnson, who has been inactive. This could be his break.

Reed is coming off a stellar game. He had a game-high six receptions for 72 yards Sunday. Not to be overlooked in the Bills' come-from-behind victory, Reed caught five of his passes for first downs in the fourth quarter.