NFL News: Josh Allen Clears Concussion Protocol, Will Start For Bills On Sunday

Josh Allen on the turf after taking a hit.
Timothy Ludwig / Getty Images

Josh Allen was knocked out of last week’s game against the New England Patriots, but the Buffalo Bills quarterback will be back on the field for this Sunday’s game.

The Bills announced on Saturday that Allen had cleared concussion protocol after taking a hit to the head from Patriots defender Jonathan Jones and falling to the turf motionless for several seconds in the fourth quarter of his team’s 16-10 loss last week. Allen was taken to the locker room for evaluation after the hit and, following the game, was placed into the league-mandated concussion protocol.

The Buffalo Bills announced on Saturday that Allen had completed the protocol and would be in the lineup on Sunday for the game against the Tennessee Titans. There were already signs that the quarterback would be back in the lineup for the Bills. He was practicing on a limited basis by the end of the week, which could only come if he had reached the fourth stage of the five-step process a player must complete in order to be cleared to play. The Bills also failed to add another quarterback to the roster during the week, which seemed to indicate that the team anticipated him playing on Sunday, keeping backup Matt Barkley on the bench.

It was not clear if Allen was actually diagnosed with a concussion, but he seemed to be suffering no lingering effects from the hit. Bills head coach Sean McDermott said on Friday that he felt comfortable starting Allen as long as he could complete the protocol.

Coming off the loss to the Patriots, the Bills are looking to rebound against the Titans. A win would send the Bills into their bye week with a 4-1 record and firmly in the AFC playoff hunt.

As Sports Illustrated noted, the Bills have the look of a playoff team, especially as they sport one of the best defenses in the league. But Allen has struggled with decision-making, already having given up eight turnovers on the year.

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As the report added, Allen needs to do a better job of recognizing defenses.

“Allen’s first reaction needs a lot of work. The third offensive play of the game against New England offered a perfect illustration. The Patriots, a known Cover 0 blitzing team, showed an unabashed Cover 0 blitz before the snap,” the report noted. “And sure enough, they brought it. But Allen was caught totally unaware and quickly sacked. (Buffalo picked up a first down on the play thanks to a Stephon Gilmore holding foul, but that’s not the point.)”

Allen is expected to start on Sunday and will hopefully fare better against the Titans.