5 players to watch

Posted Aug 11, 2013

In the Bills preseason opener there will be plenty debuts made by players on the roster. Some were signed in the offseason as free agents while others were draft choices or undrafted signees. Here are a handful of players worth examining to get a better handle on just what kind of contributors they could be when the 2013 regular season begins.

Colin Brown
He’ll get first crack at the starting left guard position against the Colts. Brown has to demonstrate that his advantage in size and strength over chief competitor Doug Legursky is a better asset than Legursky’s agility and technique.

Alex Carrington
He’s been the most consistent performer in camp on either side of the ball in the eyes of coach Marrone when it comes to pad level. Knowing the low man usually wins in football Carrington could be primed to make an awful lot of plays on defense this season.

Chris Hogan
Beyond the top four receivers (Johnson, Graham, Woods, Goodwin) Hogan has been the most consistent among the rest of the team’s wideout contingent. He’ll need to demonstrate that same consistency against the Colts by gaining separation with regularity and making plays.

EJ Manuel
It’s beyond obvious that a lot of eyes will be on the Bills top draft choice, but he’s likely to see even more playing time than initially anticipated with Kevin Kolb essentially serving as an emergency quarterback for this game. Manuel’s poise and supervision of the offense will be just as important as his execution as Doug Marrone and his staff begin to gather hard evidence for their quarterback competition.

Nickell Robey
An undrafted rookie, Robey has impressed the defensive staff in the practice setting, earning reps with the first team when players like Leodis McKelvin and Justin Rogers have been out of the lineup with injuries. Small in stature, Robey has to prove that he can match up with physical receivers and effectively support the run.