While the day belonged to the unveiling of Buffalo's white throwback jersey, the players were still getting work done on the field. Red zone work was the focus Thursday night with the offense and defense both making their share of plays.
Early in the 11-on-11 run period Marshawn Lynch ran hard, but was met in the hole one time by Keith Ellison who delivered a good lick on the running back. Kawika Mitchell also had a good stick on Dominic Rhodes. John Wendling had a good crack on Fred Jackson after he burst through the line of scrimmage.
Offensive lineman Eric Wood was mixing it up early in his first practice. On one play when Wood pulled to the left he met Paul Posluszny just beyond the line of scrimmage and they grappled for a few yards before Wood gave him a shove at the end of it.
"It has been a long time coming," said Wood of the opportunity to put the pads back on. "The tough thing is, these are your teammates, so you don't want to be finishing people, but at the same time, that is the way I play. I am not trying to get in fights with my teammates, that is not who I am, but at the same time I have to get in shape. We have a game in 10 days, so I have to play my game."
"I watched him some in the nine-on-seven (period)," said head coach Dick Jauron. "He's a good player. You know a tough guy. He's a little bit behind, obviously, so he looked rusty."
HighlightsIn 7-on-7 Terrell Owens got the crowd excited with a 35-yard touchdown reception from Trent Edwards.
In red zone work Roscoe Parrish and Justin Jenkins scored touchdowns on back-to-back plays on throws from Gibran Hamdan. Parrish also dove to reach the ball over the goal line on another scoring play from in close.
Seth McKinney had the best lead block of the night when he got out in front of Marshawn Lynch on a swing pass and took Bryan Scott out of the play.
The run game had a few more big gainers with Lynch bursting through the line for extra yardage on one play and Rhodes gaining the corner on an outside run and turning up field.
Josh Reed had a couple of touchdowns on the night including a well-timed hookup with Ryan Fitzpatrick on a slant for a score.
Lee Evans also had a touchdown on a post pattern in red zone work.
At tight end Derek Schouman was more involved in the passing game Thursday as he caught four passes on the night.
On defense, Leodis McKelvin who was beat on the touchdown play to Owens came right back on the next play and broke up a pass over the middle that was intended for Rhodes. He also broke up another throw by Fitzpatrick.
Spencer Johnson had a quarterback pressure as he flushed Fitzpatrick from the pocket.
Terrence McGee had a pass breakup in the end on a pass intended for Felton Huggins.
Nic Harris had a pass breakup on a pass over the middle by Fitzpatrick during 11-on-11.
And Keith Ellison broke up a pass from Hamdan outside by the numbers.
Rian Lindell was doing some place kicking work during practice and fared relatively well. At the end of his kicking work, special teams coordinator Bobby April called up the entire roster not in the field goal formation to gather around Lindell to heckle him as he attempted a 48-yard field goal. Lindell's kick was true with his teammates cheering after the ball passed through the uprights.
Elsewhere on special teams gunners for the punt team were working against jammers. In the one-on-two matchups, Ellis Lankster had a good rep against jammers Shaine Smith and Ko Simpson.
John Wendling fought jammers Drayton Florence and Ashton Youboty to a draw.
And Reggie Corner got around jammers Lydell Sargeant and Cary Harris.
Lineup changesEric Wood and Andy Levitre continue to rotate in with veterans Kirk Chambers and Seth McKinney as the reps with the first unit still seem to be almost a 50-50 split between the two sets of guards.
Drayton Florence for the second straight day was the first team nickel corner. Florence has fared well in the slot thus far in camp.
Reggie Corner took what appeared to be the majority of second team nickel reps with Youboty running third nickel, though he did get second team reps as well.
With the defensive tackles short on numbers, there was a lot of shuffling between units on the defensive interior.
Chris Ellis is getting regular second team reps at left defensive end opposite Ryan Denney.
Roscoe Parrish was the only new injury to report coming out of practice as he came up limping late in the workout.
"Toward the end of the last drill, it seemed that he tweaked an ankle," said Jauron. "That's all I know about it at this point. Hopefully it won't be anything serious."
Not participating in practice Thursday evening were Copeland Bryan, Dustin Fox, Ventrell Jenkins, Steve Johnson, John McCargo, Shawn Nelson and Marcus Smith.
Jauron however, believes Nelson should be back practicing soon.
"We were hoping that Shawn (Nelson) would be back a little sooner than he is, but he's doing fine," said Jauron. "We expect him back if not tomorrow, then the next day. In that time frame."
Jairus Byrd, James Hardy and C.J. Hawthorne are all still on active PUP.
FridayThe Bills have an afternoon practice scheduled for 2:25 pm.