Buffalo Bills: A.J. Epenesa questionable to return with ankle injury

A.J. Epenesa, Buffalo Bills (Mandatory Credit: Rich Barnes-USA TODAY Sports)
A.J. Epenesa, Buffalo Bills (Mandatory Credit: Rich Barnes-USA TODAY Sports) /

One of the strengths of the Buffalo Bills defense this season was the depth at defensive end but that is going to be tested today against the Cleveland Browns. The Bills entered today’s game without Greg Rousseau, who has missed the past two games due to an ankle injury.

The player who replaced Rousseau in the starting lineup last week against the Minnesota Vikings and today against the Cleveland Browns was former second-round pick A.J. Epenesa. Unfortunately for the Bills, Epenesa left the game in the first quarter with an ankle injury of his own, according to the team.

Epenesa has played well when he has an increased workload and in all three games this year where he has played 50% or more of the defensive snaps, he has 3.5 sacks.

Buffalo Bills will need more from Boogie Basham and Shaq Lawson

Von Miller has been one of the best edge rushers in the league this year but he is not going to be able to do it on his own. If Epenesa is unable to return, the Bills will need players like Boogie Basham and Shaq Lawson to step up and get pressure on Jacoby Brissett.

This season, Boogie Basham has played only 31% of the defensive snaps and has two sacks and 4 QB hits while Shaq Lawson has 1.5 sacks and 5 QB hits on 36% of the defensive snaps.

This is easier said than done as the Cleveland Browns have an excellent offensive line, arguably the best in the league, but the Bills need to disrupt Jacoby Brissett who has gotten off to a great start in this game. He has begun the game completing eight of his first 11 pass attempts for 102 yards and one passing touchdown, a 25-yard pass to Amari Cooper.

The Browns are up 10-3 in the second quarter against the Buffalo Bills in Week 11.