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Sean McDermott names Bills starting MLB, CB2 and RG ahead of Week 1


As the Bills begin their week of preparation for Week 1 against the Jets, head coach Sean McDermott revealed Wednesday who won the open competition at three key position battles that took place during training camp and preseason.

McDermott said that Terrel Bernard will start at middle linebacker, Christian Benford will start as the second cornerback across from Tre'Davious White and rookie O'Cyrus Torrence will be the starting right guard on the offensive line.

Bernard, who missed the preseason with a hamstring injury, returned to practice last week and is ready to go for the regular season. His performance in training camp before the injury left a positive impression on the coaching staff.

"We thought he did some good things when he was healthy and available," McDermott said of Benford. "We're confident in 'TB' and excited to watch him play. He's gotta take it one play at a time."

Benford, a sixth-round pick by the Bills in 2022, won the second starting corner spot after competing with Dane Jackson and Kaiir Elam.

"He was on his assignments, think he contested balls and made some interceptions, made some plays on the ball as well," McDermott said.

Along the offensive line, rookie O'Cyrus Torrence will anchor the RG spot. The Bills drafted him in the second round of the NFL Draft in the spring and Torrence — nicknamed 'Cybo' — has been a steady presence in his young career during the offseason and camp.

"Cybo coming in as a young player and taking it one play at a time and having a workman-like approach to his game early on in spring and in training camp," McDermott shared. "Thought he handled himself well."

The Bills have first practice of the week Wednesday afternoon. The team will practice in Buffalo through Saturday before leaving Sunday for their Week 1 matchup on MNF against the Jets.

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