One of Perry Fewell’s former charges won’t be in the lineup when the new Bills head coach leads his team onto the field for the first time.
Rashean Mathis, who played for Fewell when Fewell was the defensive backs coach for the Jaguars, has been ruled out of Sunday’s game because of a groin injury he suffered against the Jets. Mathis had an MRI on Monday, and coach Jack Del Rio said that they didn’t like what they found.
“He won’t play this week,” Del Rio said. “It could be a little while.
With Rashean, he’s proven over time to kind of beat the prognosis. Some
guys just heal quickly and Rashean’s been that kind of guy for us.”
This will be the second game Mathis misses with an injury this season. He also sat out the November 1st game against the Titans, and Reggie Nelson, a safety moved to cornerback, struggled as his replacement. Del Rio offered no hints if Nelson would again be making the move.
Reserve cornerbacks Tyron Brackenridge, William Middleton and Brian Witherspoon are fairly inexperienced, and the team is deeper at safety. Complicating any decision is the fact that strong safety Gerald Alexander missed practice Wednesday with a shoulder injury.
UPDATE: As pointed out by a commenter, Mathis and Fewell were never with the Jaguars at the same time. Fewell left in 2002, Mathis came in 2003 and I apologize for the error.