The offense tried to bounce back on Thursday afternoon after a trying practice on Wednesday night, and while a few more plays were made Buffalo's defense still appeared to have the upper hand.
"We came back out with a little bit better sense of purpose on the offensive side and did some better things out there," said head coach Chan Gailey. "We have to continue to work, but more importantly we have to continue to compete. And if you come back out and compete, then you have a chance to be a champion eventually."
Buffalo's passing game had slightly more success, but the majority of the completions went for short gains on underneath throws as the Bills secondary has been very sound with their coverages. They've also been very aggressive in press coverage getting into the receivers' chests and disrupting the timing of the routes.
"We have physical corners," said Chad Jackson. "And when they get in our face, are pressing us and they're putting their hands on us, we're putting our hands on them also."
The Bills' defensive backfield was viewed by many as the biggest asset on that side of the ball and to this point they have not disappointed.
"If you looked at it from strictly paper, going into the season, you'd say that was the strength of your team," said Gailey. "And I don't think that there's been anything in camp thus far that would change your opinion of that. They're a very strong group, they communicate well and there's a great deal of continuity back there. I feel like that's a very strong area for us right now on our football team."
With their coverage downfield so effective they've forced the offense to take the underneath stuff so often that they're starting to sit on some of the quick routes as well.
And taking those risks is something the men on the edges feel comfortable doing based on their familiarity having played with the safeties all last season or in some cases even longer.
"When I can look at Jairus Byrd and he knows what I'm thinking it makes it a lot easier to go out and execute and make plays," said Drayton Florence. "When you've got a chance to take a chance and jump a route I always know my safety's got me over the top and that helps out a lot."
Banged up BillsThere were three more non-participants at practice Thursday and all of them were on the offensive side of the ball. Cornell Green, David Nelson and Derek Schouman all watched the afternoon practice session. Green got a rest day, but for Nelson and Schouman the news wasn't as positive.
"Derek's got a little bit of an issue that we've been dealing with since almost the first day of camp and we just gave him a rest day to see if he could get back," said Gailey. "David's going to be out awhile. He pulled and he's going to be out a while."
It's believed that Nelson has a hamstring injury, which he sustained in Wednesday's night practice after running a route in 7-on-7 work.
With players getting nicked up Gailey was asked if he felt the number of injuries had to be addressed.
"It always grows this time of training camp," he said. "That's part of it. You deal with it and you go on with it. We obviously have to cut some reps. That's part of camp. You just cut the reps and the guys work that can, get work. You can't control all of that. I mean, you could come out and walk through every day, but you wouldn't get anything done. It's a tough game for tough people."
Williams injures handDefensive tackle Kyle Williams left practice early with an injured right hand. He did not seem all that concerned about it, but athletic trainers wrapped the hand in ice and he later went to the locker room for further examination from the team's medical staff.
"They just took him off as a precaution," Gailey said. "They're checking on him to make sure nothing's really wrong. It was one of those where he got banged a little bit and we'll see what turns up with it. But I don't think it was anything bad at all."
Offensive lineman Jason Watkins also left practice early. Athletic trainers were stretching out his back for several minutes on the sidelines, but it appeared getting it loose was an issue. So he too headed to the locker room.
Prognosis on WangFifth-round pick Ed Wang, who underwent thumb surgery earlier this week, was riding the stationary bike at practice Thursday and won't be on the field any time soon.
"It depends on how quickly things heal," said Gailey. "I would say the best we're talking about is four (weeks) and the worst we're talking about is eight (weeks). But don't hold me to either one of those."* *
Even on the short end of that timetable, Wang is likely to miss the rest of training camp.
Posluszny updatePaul Posluszny is doing more and more drills with the strength and conditioning coordinators on the unused practice field during practices, but according to the middle linebacker he's still a bit of a ways away.
"It's coming along good," he said. "I feel really good but we're going to take it slow, no reason to rush just yet. So we're going to take it slow but I feel really good. I'm starting to get everything back where I'm moving close to 100-percent. Hopefully it's just another week or two and I'll be back out there."
HighlightsOn the offensive side Roscoe Parrish made a heads up play catching a pass that was deflected by Bryan Scott along the far sideline.
Chad Jackson caught a strike from Trent Edwards over the middle in 7-on-7.
Donald Jones was probably guilty of pushing off a bit, but created some space between himself and Ellis Lankster to pull in a touchdown pass from Brian Brohm.
James Hardy ran a good stop route for a first down completion along the near sideline that got him a pat on the back from Ryan Fitzpatrick on his way back to the huddle.
Marshawn Lynch took a swing pass out in the left flat 12 yards to the end zone in 7-on-7 red zone work.
And Parrish made a catch along the near sideline in tight space, put himself in reverse and then darted between a pair of defenders to dive over the goal line for a score.
Defensively, Donte Whitner had a pass break up on a throw underneath to Roscoe Parrish in 7-on-7 red zone.
Terrence McGee got his hand on a pass that had James Hardy targeted in the back of the end zone to force an incompletion.
On the very next play Leodis McKelvin knocked away a pass intended for Naaman Roosevelt.
Ashton Youboty made a diving pass defense on a throw to the far side of the field that was designed to go to James Hardy.
Youboty also made the defensive play of the day, forcing a fumble by Hardy after a reception on a quick slant. He also recovered the fumble.
Bryan Scott had a 'would be' tackle for loss on Chad Simpson in 11-on-11 work.
And Antonio Coleman had a batted pass in the two minute drill to force a turnover on downs.
Lineup changesWith Cornell Green missing at the starting right tackle position, Jamon Meredith filled in for him. Andre Ramsey again spelled Eric Wood who did not practice.
Christian Gaddis lined up at left guard with the second unit in place of the injured Cordaro Howard (head).
ScheduleThe Bills have a two-a-day scheduled for Friday with a morning practice at 9:30 that's closed to the public and a night practice at 7pm.