News

Print
RSS

5 players to watch: Bills-Steelers

Posted Aug 16, 2014

Following a pair of joint practices with the Steelers, the Bills will again square off with Pittsburgh in Saturday’s preseason game.

Here are five players to keep a close eye on in tonight’s contest:

Ross Cockrell

The fourth-round pick appears to be getting more and more comfortable in the NFL setting. He looks more willing to trust his instincts now that he has a better handle on the defensive scheme. More plays on the ball in coverage will be an indication that he’s playing faster.

Chris Gragg

The second-year tight end got off to a good start in the Hall of Fame game with a four-catch performance, but was not a factor in the passing game at all against Carolina. With Tony Moeaki still sidelined by a hamstring, Gragg has to take advantage of extra reps to prove he can be the athletic option the Bills are looking for at the tight end position.

T.J. Graham

It’s been a steady return from offseason hip surgery for the speed wideout through the course of the summer. He’s flashed here and there through the first two preseason games. Now is the time where Graham has to make a move up the depth chart with some solid performances over the next two weeks. Tonight’s Pittsburgh game will be a good place to start.

Chris Hairston

He began training camp at guard and has since been shifted to tackle. Wherever Hairston is lining up he’s got to continue to refine his game to get back to the level he was at before he was sidelined by a medical condition for all of 2013. A good performance against some good Pittsburgh edge talent could go a long way in convincing a staff that hasn’t seen much of him on the field since arriving in Buffalo.

Randell Johnson

Johnson has NFL-caliber athleticism with fluid movement for a 6-foot-4 linebacker. He’s flashed his potential in spots during the preseason and was the leading tackler in the Hall of Fame game. Now he has to demonstrate improved consistency from play to play and eliminate mental errors to show he’s effectively grasped his responsibilities in the defensive scheme.