Ford will be a healthy inactive for the season finale Sunday against the Dolphins.
This comes as a bit of a surprise since Ford has taken 21 carries the last two games and the Bills have wanted to give him as many looks as feasible with an eye toward next season. With Chris Ivory (shoulder) ready to play again, the Bills will go with two veteran backs Sunday, with LeSean McCoy leading the way as the team tries to end its season on a winning note.
Ford rushed seven times for 33 yards and added two catches for 14 yards on four targets in Sunday's 24-12 loss to New England.
Ford got the start at running back with coach Sean McDermott punishing LeSean McCoy for a "situation" between the two, and even though McCoy returned to lead back duties to begin Buffalo's second drive, Ford still ended up outplaying the declining veteran. If injury issues persist in Buffalo's backfield, Ford could once again find himself handling a handful of touches against the Dolphins in Week 17.
Ford is listed as the backup to LeSean McCoy in advance of Sunday's matchup against New England.
Ford made his season debut in Week 15, collecting 14 carries on 41 offensive snaps in a week where much of the backfield was sidelined due to injury. While McCoy is back in the mix and listed as the starter, Ford is the only other healthy true running back on the active roster, as Chris Ivory (shoulder) is inactive and Marcus Murphy (elbow) was placed on IR this week.
Coach Sean McDermott said Friday the team will decide in the upcoming day about playing time for LeSean McCoy (hamstring), Chris Ivory (shoulder) and Ford for Sunday's game in New England, Mike Rodak of ESPN.com reports.
It looks like the two veterans have overcome their injuries and will play against the division rival, but the coaching staff has been saying all along they'd like to keep giving Ford some looks, so expect him to see at least a handful of carries against the Patriots. That said, unless the Bills sit McCoy completely, it's hard to rely on an unknown rookie -- in a key fantasy week -- that might be third in the pecking order, going against a heavily favored Patriots squad.
Ford is expected to handle a reduced role Sunday against the Patriots after fellow running backs LeSean McCoy (hamstring) and Chris Ivory (shoulder) turned in full practices Thursday.
Both McCoy and Ivory were sidelined for the Week 15 win over the Lions, resulting in Ford slotting in as the main backup to Marcus Murphy. When Murphy (elbow) exited early with an injury of his own, Ford was pressed into an extended role in his NFL debut, logging 14 carries for 46 yards and hauling in his lone target for seven yards. Murphy is now out of the picture after being placed on injured reserve earlier this week, but Ford will sink to third on the depth chart with McCoy and Ivory on track to play Sunday in New England. Unless the Bills opt to deliberate limit the veterans' workloads over the final two games, it's hard to envision Ford getting double-digit touches again in 2018.