The men in Buffalo's secondary knew in February that seeing Terrell Owens on the practice field every day would not be happening in 2010. With the team announcing it would not extend a contract offer to the free agent, he was going to be playing elsewhere in 2010. As soon as he signed with the Bengals in late July, however, Buffalo's defensive backs knew they'd be seeing Owens again.
Owens and his receiving counterpart Chad Ochocinco will be arriving with their Bengals teammates to face the Bills on Saturday night in a preseason game where both clubs are expected to play their starters for at least the first half.
Rest assured that Buffalo's secondary, despite their own knack for the interception last season, still respect Owens' game.
"It's always a great challenge," said strong safety Bryan Scott. "I think having Terrell back in, he's a great talent and it's a great team so it'll just help prepare us for the regular season."
Left cornerback Terrence McGee, who is expected to line up opposite Owens in the game Saturday, was asked if seeing Owens again would be fun.
"Fun? I guess," McGee said reluctantly. "It'll definitely be good to see him, but it's no fun and games out there trying to cover him. You definitely don't want to get beat deep or beat for a big play. Before the game it'll be fun to say hello, but during the game its business. I will not smile if a deep route is caught on me. It would not be fun and games."
McGee and Scott do admit however, that going against Owens in practice every day last season will benefit them in some capacity.
"To be honest it's kind of like the mystique is no longer there," said Scott. "He's an incredible athlete. He works very hard at what he does. You see how he trains and you see how he plays, but you know what to expect from him."
"I haven't gone against him in a while, but during the season I definitely got a good feel for him with his speed and the stuff that he does at the line," said McGee. "He does different stuff than most receivers. He's more aggressive at the line, especially with smaller corners like myself. So you definitely know how to play him if you're going to press him or (play off), but when that ball is snapped he's still T.O.. He still is a big playmaker and you've got to get ready to play."
Facing Owens in the preseason will just be the opening act. The Bills will travel to Cincinnati in Week 11 to face the Bengals in the regular season.