Bills linebacker Terrel Bernard carted off with ankle injury in playoff game against Steelers

Pittsburgh Steelers running back Najee Harris (22) carries the ball against Buffalo Bills linebacker Terrel Bernard (43) during the second quarter of an NFL wild-card playoff football game, Monday, Jan. 15, 2024, in Buffalo, N.Y. (AP Photo/Jeffrey T. Barnes)

ORCHARD PARK, N.Y. (AP) — Bills starting middle linebacker Terrel Bernard was carted off the field after twisting his right ankle early in the second half of Buffalo’s AFC wild-card playoff game against the Pittsburgh Steelers on Monday.

Bernard was hurt while tackling receiver Diontae Johnson from behind and appeared to twist his ankle while tumbling to the turf. The Bills announced Bernard was having X-rays and later said he would not return to the game.

The second-year player took over the starting job after Buffalo lost Tremaine Edmunds in free agency in March.

The injury thins an already depleted position. Starter Tyrel Dodson did not play due to a shoulder injury, and backup Baylon Spector was sidelined by a back injury in the first half.