1. First team offense could play longer Thursday night
The Bills first preseason game is just a couple of days away and knowing all the new faces that exist on offense, Buffalo’s coaching staff may extend the playing time a bit longer for the starters on that side of the ball.
“On the offensive side that could be the case,” McDermott admitted. “We’ll just see how the game flows. We want to get out and establish some good fundamentals and go from there.”
In previous preseasons under coach McDermott, the first team units typically play about one quarter of action.
2. Waddle to I-R, Gaines out indefinitely
The news was not good concerning the immediate future availability of cornerback E.J. Gaines and tackle LaAdrian Waddle. Head coach Sean McDermott said Gaines will be out indefinitely, and the team announced Tuesday morning that Waddle is being placed on injured reserve.
“L.A. Waddle, it doesn’t look like at this point… it’s going to take him a long time from the reports that we’ve got,” McDermott said. “What happens with that remains to be seen. Unfortunate situation there. E.J. is still out and at this point it’ll be a number of weeks with him.”
With Gaines out for the foreseeable future it puts Kevin Johnson firmly in the driver’s seat for the corner role behind current starters Tre’Davious White and Levi Wallace. At the nickel corner spot, Gaines is out of the mix for now as a backup candidate for Taron Johnson, leaving Siran Neal, Johnson and even Cam Lewis as the remaining competition.
“It’s an opportunity for some players who were behind E.J. to step up and show us what they’ve got,” said McDermott. “I do like some of the possibilities with that group.”
Buffalo has since added free agent OT Jarron Jones as a replacement for Waddle on the team’s roster.
3. Croom-Knox update
Both Jason Croom and Dawson Knox are dealing with hamstring injuries, which have kept them sidelined for most of training camp. Their progress in rehabbing their injuries have been encouraging for their head coach, but there’s no firm timetable as to when they’ll return.
“We are hopeful,” said McDermott of Croom and Knox returning sooner rather than later. “When that time is that they actually return to the field and participate in team drills remains to be seen. Hamstring tend to take some time at least initially and they kind of go from there. Each of their hamstring injuries are different.
“For Dawson it’s his first real hamstring injury. Then Jason he did it in the spring and he had a re-occurrence type deal so they’re two different situations.”
Knox and Croom have been doing work on the side with athletic trainers and strength and conditioning coaches.