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Bills Today: Goodwin's Olympic dream, tryout players at minicamp

Posted Jun 14, 2016

Marquise Goodwin will be watching minicamp practices as he pursues his Olympic dream and there will be a handful of tryout players participating with the roster this week.


1 - Goodwin focused on making US Olympic team
Bills WR Marquise Goodwin has spent the majority of the offseason focused on qualifying for the US Olympic track and field team. Already with the longest jump in the world this calendar year, Goodwin is confident he’ll make the team when the US Olympic trials take place in Eugene, Oregon from July 1st to the 10th.

“It’s a two day competition. We have prelims one day and come back the next day for finals,” Goodwin said in an appearance on the John Murphy Show. “I’m very confident. As long as I maintain health and focus on what I need to do there’s no doubt that I should make the team.”

Goodwin is on hand for the team’s mandatory minicamp, but will not be participating in practice this week.

“I guess it wouldn’t make any sense (to practice),” said Goodwin. “I haven’t really been out there so I don’t want to really risk injury being that I’m trying to make the Olympic team in a couple of weeks. Just plan on being here supporting the team.”

Goodwin told the John Murphy Show that he never formally asked head coach Rex Ryan if he could try out for the US Olympic team. He just took Ryan’s public comments about his Olympic bid as clearance to do so.

“When coach Ryan had made the statement to the reporters it kind of gave me the okay to go,” he said. “At first I was kind of considering, but it really wasn’t a decision I had made yet. I didn’t want to put myself in a position where I would risk losing my job in football chasing my Olympic dream. I didn’t even approach him about it, until he made it public for me trying out for the Olympic team. So that really put me at ease and I couldn’t thank him enough for that opportunity.”

 

2 - Tryout players at minicamp
The Bills have a handful of tryout players participating in practice this week at minicamp. It hasn’t been a common practice to have such players working with the team this late in spring practices, but Buffalo’s personnel department is always looking for ways to potentially upgrade the roster.

Kain Colter, WR, Northwestern
LaMarcus Farmer, CB, Troy
Lee Hightower, CB, Houston
Justin Renfro, OT, Miami
Ryan Schmidt, OL, St. Lawrence
Jacob Schunke, OG, Towson
Andrew Zeller, OG, Maryland

3 - Clay optimistic about tight end position
Back to full health after knee and back injuries last season cost him three games in 2015, TE Charles Clay is very optimistic about the group they have at tight end and the positive steps the offense can take in year two under coordinator Greg Roman.

“When you look at the team we have I never had the feeling like we were all on the field at the same time,” Clay told the John Murphy Show. “One guy was out here, another guy was out there. Anytime you’re on the field together to build chemistry and we had to switch game plans, switch the offense up a little bit. When Shady goes down or Sammy goes down or Tyrod was out we had to switch the offense up a little bit. I feel guys did a good job. Our last two games we won with a lot of guys out. So I definitely feel like we’re not that far off.”

Clay labeled the tight end position a by committee role in Buffalo’s offense because of all the demands put on the position in Roman’s offensive scheme. In his opinion there’s no way one guy could handle all the different assignments.

“There might be a time where there are three tight ends on the field and one is running a route and the other two are blocking, or two in and one is running a route with the other blocking,” Clay said. “The offense relies heavily on the tight end position so you can’t really just put one tight end out there and run the offense that Greg Roman wants to run. I like our group. We lean on each other a lot. I feel like we have a bunch of guys who are capable of doing a lot. If you look at his offense in years past it was never just one guy having all the production at tight end.”

 

4 - Darby touted as breakout star for 2016
His week to week performance during his rookie NFL season earned him a lot of recognition as he was in the running for NFL Defensive Rookie of the Year honors. Now heading into his second NFL season, Darby is getting consideration as a breakout player this fall. NFL.com’s Eric Davis tabbed him as his breakout performer for 2016.

Eric Davis

Writer | NFL.com

Buffalo's secondary features one talented, up-and-coming cornerback

Ronald Darby has the skill set to be a top-notch cornerback in this league and had a solid start to his career in 2015. The entire Buffalo defense will be more comfortable in Rex Ryan's scheme, leading the guys up front to take some pressure off the secondary. The Bills have a lot of talent in their defensive backfield -- safeties Aaron Williams and Corey Graham, cornerback Stephon Gilmore -- and the youngster out of Florida State might be the most talented one of the group.

 

5 - Ragland popular on NFL radar
Buffalo’s second-round pick is getting an awful lot of publicity before he’s even played a down in the NFL. Ironically, he was recognized by NFL.com as one of 10 players that is not getting enough attention heading into the 2016 season. Here was their take.

Reggie RaglandBills rookie linebacker: Coach Rex Ryan has become an easy target in Buffalo, but he found a kindred spirit in Ragland, the team's second-round pick. The former Alabama star doesn't blow you away with his speed, but Ragland is an old-school defender with some bite. Set to start immediately at inside linebacker, Ragland is bound to help improve a run defense that allowed a whopping 4.4 yards per carry last season, 25th in the NFL.

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