By Tim Graham
INDIANAPOLIS -- Scott Chandler suffered the same knee injury in December that fellow Buffalo Bills tight end Mike Caussin did in 2011.
Both injuries occurred in Week 16. Caussin was unable to play a game last season.
Given that, the Bills have a major need at tight end for 2013. Chandler, who scored six touchdowns each of the past two seasons, might not be able to contribute.
"See, I worry about that," Bills General Manager Buddy Nix said today at the NFL scouting combine. "It's normally seven to nine to 10 months recovery.
"You figure it up, and we start camp at seven months for Scott. Even if the doctor said, 'You're strong enough to do it,' you don't know confidence-wise how long it'll take him to get back to 100 percent.
"I don't want to get caught without" a tight end.
The Bills have Lee Smith on their roster as a blocking tight end. Caussin and Derek Buttles, an undrafted rookie last year, also are on the roster. Joe Sawyer is on the practice squad.
The notable tight ends who could be free agents are Jared Cook (Tennessee Titans), Martellus Bennett (New York Giants), Brandon Myers (Oakland Raiders), Fred Davis (Washington Redskins), Dustin Keller (New York Jets) and Anthony Fasano (Miami Dolphins).
Nix gave this year's tight end draft class a positive grade.
"I think it's good," Nix said. "I think there's more tight ends draftable than probably I've seen in two or three years."
tagged2013 draft | 2013 free agency | 2013 NFL scouting combine | Buddy Nix | Mike Caussin | Scott Chandler