1 - Jonathan Williams improves consistency
It proved to be a bit of an up and down spring for RB Jonathan Williams in Buffalo's new offensive scheme. Ball security was just one of his issues as he put the ball on the turf a bit too often in May. It prompted offensive coordinator Rick Dennison and running backs coach Kelly Skipper to sit down with Williams and point out what parts of his game needed fine tuning to make him a more effective player down in and down out. The results thus far in training camp have been very positive.
"I think he's ironing some things out," said Dennison. "In the spring we had some discussions (with him), Kelly and I, to get a few things straightened out. I think he has really done that. I think he's focused on the things that we thought would help him out. He's done those and become a much more consistent football player."
Williams' best practice may have been in the Friday night session where he broke off several long runs and was as elusive as he was powerful. It's a unique combination for Williams, who looks to have a lock on the backup job to LeSean McCoy at this point.
2 - Tyrod's internal clock the focus in campOffensive coordinator Rick Dennison has worked with Tyrod Taylor before as the two were in Baltimore together in 2014. Now three years later, Taylor is the starting quarterback and there's one area of his game that Dennison is emphasizing. Getting the ball out in his timing-based offense.
"He understands what we want done," said Dennison of Taylor. "It's just keeping him on the same page, listening to his feet, getting the ball out on time. That's the biggest thing for me and him working on. He's bought into it. He knows what he needs to do. He knows that the ball will get out. He knows where everybody is. That's the biggest thing. Distribution, when his feet tell him to move on he's got to move on. He can't wait for a route to open up. If it's not getting there, something is wrong, so he's got to move on."
According to some analytic sites like Pro Football Focus, Taylor's delivery of the football was over 3.5 seconds on average last year, one of the slower release times in the league. But Dennison believes Taylor's anticipatory skills can be improved and is focusing on doing just that with his starting quarterback.
"I think anything can be developed," Dennison said. "I really do. If you work with a player, no matter what position they play you can develop good habits. You can develop what you want as long as you're working on it. That's what we do in individual. Yes, I think (anticipatory throwing) can be done."
3 - Right tackle competition will run through preseasonJordan Mills and rookie Dion Dawkins continue to do battle for the starting right tackle role. Dawkins has rotated in with the first unit at times during team segments. But Dennison cautioned that a starter won't be named for a while.
"I think like any position it's still going to be based on game time. We've got to see them play. Practice is great competition, but obviously the game is a different deal. We have to go through the whole preseason and it won't be done on one play and it won't be done on one game," Dennison said. "It'll be done on the entire scope of all their work. We'll just see how that goes. We know we'll have two good football players. We'll see who gets on the field more."