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Bills Today: Pryor's QB experience helping him learn offense


1 - Pryor's QB experience helping him learn offense

In order for an NFL offense to be successful, its quarterback must have a deep understanding of the offensive system. In most cases, every single play runs through the signal caller, whether he's dropping back to throw or handing the ball off to the running back.

Though he's no longer a passer, the habits that Terrelle Pryor picked up while playing the quarterback position are now helping him master Buffalo's offense.

Pryor, a wide receiver who signed a one-year deal with the Bills this week, was an extremely productive college quarterback, throwing for 6,177 yards and 57 touchdowns throughout his three years at Ohio State. Now an established wideout, Pryor still approaches new offenses with a quarterback's mindset, striving to understand the entire system rather than just his role.

Head coach Sean McDermott feel as though Pryor's experience at quarterback is aiding him as he learns a new offensive scheme.

"Yeah, 100 percent," McDermott said. "Usually the quarterback has to know everything, big picture wise, in terms of what's going on. Just knowing concepts, understanding big picture type offensive schemes and systems. He's been in several. I think that does help him."

Quarterback Nathan Peterman also feels that Pryor's resumé helps him in digesting and comprehending entire offensive systems.

"Oh yeah it helps him," Peterman said. "Especially because he understands the timing of the route having been on the other end of it. Also having had to learn offensive systems conceptually he doesn't just learn his assignment on a play. He sees the whole thing so that definitely helps him in terms of picking up our stuff."

2 - Josh Allen not 'far off' from throwing

A return to the practice field is seemingly in sight for rookie quarterback Josh Allen.

Head coach Sean McDermott thinks that Allen, who injured his elbow in Buffalo's Week 6 loss to the Texans, will once again be able to throw in the near future.

"I think he did some more [Thursday]," McDermott said. "We'll see what he does [Friday]. Every night, we kind of re-evaluate where he is and what we'll do tomorrow with him. I don't think it's too far off in terms of when he'll start to throw. We'll see with all that."

Allen has been sidelined with an elbow sprain, an ailment most commonly found in baseball pitchers, and has not thrown a pass since suffering the injury. In six games this season, Allen has completed 54 percent of his passes for 832 yards and two touchdowns.

Taking over the offense in Allen's place was veteran signal caller Derek Anderson, who too finds himself on the injury report. The 35-year-old went down late in Buffalo's Week 8 contest with the Patriots and currently finds himself in the concussion protocol.

Anderson, who has been a non-participant in practice this week, will likely miss Week 9, according to McDermott.

"Yeah, that's the natural part of that, the common sense part," McDermott said. "Yeah, it's going to be tough at this point. We'll see what he looks like [Friday]."

Should Anderson be unable to play, Nathan Peterman, who has gotten all the first team reps in practice on Wednesday and Thursday would start in his place.

3 - Taron Johnson among top rookie CBs through Week 8

For the second consecutive year, a rookie defensive back is stealing the spotlight in Buffalo.

In the 2017 season, Tre'Davious White impressed fans and analysts alike with his consistently solid play. The 27th overall pick in the 2017 draft finished his rookie campaign with 69 tackles, 18 pass deflections, and three interceptions.

This season, Taron Johnson has taken White's place as the standout rookie defensive back. Buffalo's fourth-round pick in the 2018 draft, Johnson has totaled 31 tackles and two pass deflections through seven games.

According to Pro Football Focus, Johnson has been one of the best rookie cornerbacks in the league through the first half of the 2018 season. With an overall grade of 74.1, Johnson comes in at number three on the outlet's list.

Johnson trails only Jaire Alexander and Denzel Ward on PFF's ranking, who hold grades of 82.0 and 79.7, respectively. Both Alexander and Ward were selected in the first round of this year's draft.

The rookie's strong individual play has helped Buffalo's defense as a whole. Johnson is the primary slot cornerback in a defense that has excelled in the nickel package thus far this season.

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