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Buffalo Bills' Stevie Johnson not rushing hamstring injury

When wide receiver Stevie Johnson went down with a hamstring injury on Friday, the Buffalo Bills offense took a big hit.

Johnson is the team's No. 1 pass-catcher and will need to be healthy and in the lineup for the Bills to reach maximum potential this season.

Initial reports from the Bills have Johnson "out for a while," and he seems to be in agreement with that assessment.

"It's just a process," Johnson told NFL.com's Ian Rapoport, promoting New Era's "Speak with Your Cap" campaign. "It's gonna take time and patience. There's a lot involved in these hamstrings. I don't want to come back too soon and have to deal with it for the season, so I'm working with the guys in the training room and they're getting me right.

"Ice, stim(ulation), everything," Johnson went on to say. "Trying to strengthen it for the season."

The Bills and Johnson clearly are comfortable with taking a wait-and-see approach, in hopes of nipping it in the bud now, instead of risking further injury down the road.

"I'm actually hoping to come back before (the regular season) just to test it out, see how I feel," Johnson said. "But that goes with how I feel, how my leg's feeling, you don't want to be stupid about this injury because -- it can linger on for an entire season and that's what we don't want to happen."

So, for now, Johnson will purely be a spectator on the sideline, donning an official Bills New Era Cap instead of a helmet.

"I have a bunch of Buffalo Bills hats, snapbacks, a few aren't even out yet," Johnson said. "And I also have one I got from New Era which is made out of football. That's probably the best one."

Despite Johnson's love of fashionable caps from New Era, common sense should tell us that he'd much rather have a helmet on his head, catching passes from whichever quarterback gets the nod that day.

Follow Ian Rapoport on Twitter @RapSheet.

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