Inside the Bills - Aug 11

Bills greats to attend Toronto kickoff festival
Posted By: Chris Brown | Time: 11:58 PM ET

BILLS GREATS TO ATTEND TORONTO KICKOFF FESTIVAL: Jim Kelly, Andre Reed and Thurman Thomas are just a few of the former Bills expected to be in attendance at a free football festival Wednesday in Yonge-Dundas square in Toronto the day before Buffalo's preseason game against Pittsburgh.

Joining Kelly, Reed and Thomas will be other former Bills Steve Tasker, Ray Bentley and all-time leading scorer Steve Christie. Steelers fan favorite Jerome Bettis will also be on hand as well as the 2008 Bills.

From 4-7pm fans can participate in the NFL QB Challenge, there will be X-Box 360 EA Sports Madden terminals, a chicken wing eating contest and NFL Films will be there looking for the biggest Bills fan.

Hedley will also perform live in concert at 9pm.

Leftwich expected to play Thursday
Posted By: Chris Brown | Time: 10:11 PM ET

LEFTWICH EXPECTED TO PLAY THURSDAY: Steelers newly signed QB Byron Leftwich is expected to play in Thursday night's preseason game in Toronto. That according to head coach Mike Tomlin, who was so impressed with his first two practices with the team that he's expecting to give him some playing time against the Bills.

Leftwich was signed by Pittsburgh after backup quarterback Charlie Batch suffered an injury that will keep him out 4-6 weeks.

Bills-Steelers to be televised
Posted By: Chris Brown | Time: 10:06 PM ET

BILLS-STEELERS TO BE TELEVISED: The Bills preseason game on Thursday, the first to be played in the eight-game Toronto Series will be televised.

All tickets for the game have been distributed, but due to the release of tickets held for players, limited individual game tickets are expected to become available for fans to purchase on TicketMaster and the Rogers Centre Box Office through the start of Thursday's game.

Fans across the region can watch the game in high definition on the Bills Television Network. Affiliates include WKBW-Buffalo, WHAM-Rochester, WTVH-Syracuse, WSEE-Erie, PA and Citytv in Ontario, Canada.

Radio listeners can tune into the game in Buffalo on 97 Rock (96.9 FM) and 103.3 The Edge (103.3 FM). Listeners in Rochester can tune into WHAM-AM and in Canada on The Fan 590.

OTs Murphy and Estes injured
Posted By: Chris Brown | Time: 9:26 PM ET

OTS MURPHY AND ESTES INJURED: Both left the field under their own power, but the Bills suddenly have just three healthy OTs in camp as Matt Murphy left practice with a severe shoulder injury and Patrick Estes hobbled off with a left leg injury.

Murphy was taken to a local hospital for x-rays and an MRI. Dick Jauron said the team may have to address the position with a roster move based on the outcome of the injury diagnoses.

It's obvious Jauron does not want to play Walker and Chambers for the whole game Thursday and some quick roster moves may have to be executed to prevent that from happening.

I also fear the price for Jason Peters just went up.

Crowell, Whitner participate; Mayle, Buggs sit out
Posted By: Chris Brown | Time: 7:14 PM ET

CROWELL, WHITNER PARTICIPATING: After missing Saturday's preseason game both Angelo Crowell and Donte Whitner are participating in practice tonight. We'll have an update on their participation tonight on the home page.

YOUNG PLAYERS SITTING: Scott Mayle and LB Marcus Buggs are not participating tonight.
REED SITTING: Josh Reed is not practicing tonight as he continues to recover from a sore lower back.

Whitner expected to go tonight; Reed a question mark
Posted By: Chris Brown | Time: 5:05 PM ET

WHITNER EXPECTED TO GO; REED A ?: After participating in a closed morning walk through Donte Whitner is expected to practice in the Bills evening session tonight after missing the past few days of practice and the preseason opener.

Josh Reed's status is a question mark. He did not participate in the close morning walk through Monday.

Steve Johnson full name jersey
Posted By: Chris Brown | Time: 2:19 PM ET

STEVE JOHNSON FULL NAME JERSEY: Perhaps you missed it Saturday night, but Steve Johnson had his full name on the back of his number 13 jersey against the Redskins.

I asked him about it joking that there was no mistaking him for someone else Saturday night. Steve said he was surprised to see it when he walked into the locker room Saturday afternoon.

"I never thought my name on the back of my jersey would look as long as Houshmanzadeh," he said.

He also heard a couple of teammates behind him in the tunnel waiting to go out on the field before the Redskins game.

"I heard Will (James) behind me say, 'Wow they've got his whole name on the back of that thing,'" said Johnson.

With Spencer Johnson on the roster obviously there are two players with the same first letter of their first name in addition to the same last name.

Spencer Johnson's jersey read 'S. Johnson' while the rookie receiver had his whole first name.

But why not Sp. Johnson for Spencer and St. Johnson for Steve?

I asked asst. equipment manager Woody Ribbeck who told me it's a league rule. If two players with the same last name have the same first initial the second player that comes in alphabetical order must have his first name spelled out on the back of the jersey.

So it appears that the rookie receiver will have his first and last name on his jersey all season.

Johnson has been performing well in camp and did pretty good in the first preseason outing. He's executing routes and assignments and adjusts well on the fly. He's really making a good case to be on the 53-man roster.

How much will Spikes pay for 51?
Posted By: Chris Brown | Time: 10:23 AM ET

HOW MUCH WILL SPIKES PAY FOR 51?: With Takeo Spikes now a 49er it's going to be interesting to see how much he's willing to pay Dontarrious Thomas for jersey number 51.

Spikes has always worn the number and even his personal website has 51 in it.

The former Bills LB is expected to line up at ILB next to Patrick Willis in San Fran's 3-4 front.

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