Friday was the last full practice for the Bills before their preseason debut Sunday night in Canton, and the players are anxious to face an opponent. The dog days of training camp have arrived so the players are just happy to be getting off campus.
"Camp is camp and you always kind of look forward to kicking the season off and knock the rust off, get the dust off a little bit as far as getting snaps and reps a little bit so depending on how many reps the coach wants the starters to go, then we'll go accordingly," said Terrell Owens.
Head coach Dick Jauron still hasn't definitively determined just how much time the starters will receive, though he estimates a few series.
"We'll just have to see what happens," Jauron said. "You just don't know what's going to happen. If you said two series, you have no idea, you know. And if you said snaps, it's really hard to determine too because the game could start getting away from you and you want to look at everybody. For the most part, we kind of know those guys. And if the game starts getting away, we want to see a lot of a lot of other people."
HighlightsTerrence McGee had a heck of a day in practice Friday as he's really rounded into form this week. First, during 7-on-7 he picked off a Gibran Hamdan pass that was intended for Shaine Smith over the middle, which under live conditions may have gone for a touchdown.
McGee had a pass breakup in the deep middle as well. And then later in practice he raked the ball out of Terrell Owens' hands just as he was trying to secure the ball after a catch to force an incompletion in 11-on-11 team work.
Leodis McKelvin also had an interception as he took a Matt Baker pass intended for Roscoe Parrish the other way. He too had a pass breakup later in the session on a throw that targeted Lee Evans.
Rookie Ellis Lankster made his third interception of camp when he jumped an underneath route to pick off a Trent Edwards throw.
Overall defensive backs coach George Catavolos has been encouraged by the number of plays on the ball his cornerbacks have been making.
"They've been aggressive, but our offense has done a great job," he said. "We have some quality receivers, you know who they are. We've got good speed guys, good quickness so it's been competitive on both sides. It's seemed pretty even in who has made plays or not."
The offense did turn in some plays as well. Terrell Owens had a well-timed out pattern with Trent
Edwards who hit him between the numbers for first down yardage. Owens also had a good gainer over the middle on a throw by Edwards.
Lee Evans pulled in a 20-yarder from Edwards along the far sideline.
Edwards also found Derek Schouman down the seam for a 20-yard catch.
Ryan Fitzpatrick rolled to his left and hit Jonathan Stupar for a big play downfield.
And Shaine Smith had a long distance grab on a throw from Hamdan along the near sideline.
Other defensive plays included Marcus Buggs' blow up of a screen pass to Bruce Hall. Buggs read the play from the word go and was into the backfield almost before Hall could head up field with the football.
Chris Ellis and Jermaine McGhee teamed up for a "sack" on Ryan Fitzpatrick.
And rookie Cary Harris had a pass breakup over the middle on a pass from Hamdan to Smith.
Ashton Youboty was the new non-participant in practice Friday. Head coach Dick Jauron is unsure about the cornerback's availability for Sunday night.
"I believe it was his groin," said Jauron. "It kind of crept up (on him). He was okay after practice (Thursday), and then he said he just got stiff in the morning. So we'll see what happens there."
During practice a pair of defensive tackles and a center went down with injuries. Spencer Johnson was pulled from practice about midway through as it appeared he had a toe injury. A few plays later John McCargo exited the lineup after getting leg whipped in the calf. And Philip was the last to come out after suffering a knee injury.
"He said he felt okay at the end," said Jauron of Johnson. "He's just a little bit sore. So we're hoping."
Jauron is hopeful that McCargo's injury is superficial, but he'll be re-evaluated Saturday. Same for Philip, whose injury could be the most serious of the three.
Brad Butler again missed practice and is not expected to play Sunday night.
On a positive note Steve Johnson participated fully in practice and has an outside chance of playing in Sunday night's game.
Lineup changesDemetrius Bell again took the first time right tackle reps in the absence of Butler. He also got right tackle work with the second unit.
With Ashton Youboty out Reggie Corner ran with the second nickel unit.
TE Shawn Nelson got sprinkled in for some first team reps during 7-on-7 work.
Marcus Buggs again switched with Pat Thomas, with Buggs the backup middle linebacker and Thomas running third string.