Wednesday, August 26, 2015, 10:10am
DeMarco Murray’s biggest schematic adjustment in coming from Dallas to Philadelphia is running out of the shotgun formation instead of getting the ball from a quarterback is who under center. It’s similar to how he played at Oklahoma, though, when he last took handoffs from Sam Bradford.
“We didn’t do much of it in Dallas, but I’ve done it in past,” Murray said. “Hopefully we’ll get more downhill runs and get in the home position, but I think just the way we run and the plays, it’s hard for teams to set on one guy, set on one formation, we have a lot of things.”
There are advantages and disadvantages. LeSean McCoy preferred taking handoffs when the quarterback was under center because he was 7 ½ yards deep and he said it helped with his vision. He had the running start in that scenario as opposed to in the shotgun, when McCoy said he started running sideways.
Murray said he actually gets to “see more of the field” when it’s a shotgun formation.
Fortunately, it doesn't appear as if the injury is serious, with Clay saying he's "100 percent fine."
"I'm fine," he said after practice, via Mike Rodak of ESPN. "It was just something that they wanted to look out for me a little bit. It was something that started nagging, so they decided it would be best to pull me out."
Clay signed a five-year, $38 million contract with the Bills this offseason and projects to play a big role for Buffalo this season. He hasn't performed the way many expected, but he'll still be the team's No. 1 tight end for the regular season. Last season, Clay was hampered by a right knee injury. When asked if he injured the same knee on Tuesday, he was reluctant to comment, the story went on to say.
Tuesday, August 25, 2015, 10:28am
The Bills are still banged up in the backfield, but they got a playmaker back on the field this morning.
According to Ty Dunne of the Buffalo News, Bills wide receiver Percy Harvin was back on the field after missing two weeks with a hip injury. He wasn’t wearing pads, but having him active is a nice start for the Bills.
Harvin had a platelet-rich plasma injection last week because his injury wasn’t responding to treatment, and it apparently worked, the story said.
Buffalo Bills coach Rex Ryan said Saturday that both wide receiver Percy Harvin (hip) and running back Karlos Williams (undisclosed) will be ready for the Bills' regular-season opener Sept. 13 against the Indianapolis Colts.
Harvin has missed over a week of practice with hip soreness and received a platelet-rich plasma (PRP) injection last week.
"He’ll definitely be back for the opener," Ryan said. "We’re hoping that he comes back and is able to play in one of these preseason games."
Williams underwent an unspecified medical procedure to a "sensitive area," per Ryan, after being hospitalized last week.
"He looked like Fred Sanford walking into a meeting today," Ryan said Saturday. "But other than that, he’s fine. Like I said, everybody tells me that he’s going to be ready to go when we kick the thing off for real."
Saturday, August 22, 2015, 1:15pm
Rex Ryan isn't sold on any of his quarterbacks in Buffalo.
The first-year Bills coach has once again been tasked with picking a respectable starter from a mediocre litter of gunslingers. Despite some flashy and consistent play from Tyrod Taylor in the first two preseason games, Ryan remains unswayed.
Ryan told the Buffalo media Saturday that there is a "high possibility" of keeping the Bills' top three quarterbacks -- Taylor, Matt Cassel, EJ Manuel -- on the roster for the season. He also reiterated that the Bills will give each of the Three Amigos a shot in the team's next preseason game.
"We haven't decided yet who's starting at QB next week," Ryan said. "We'll rotate all three in this week."
Despite being surrounded by only laughable talent — nothing but down-roster receivers and emergency-signee running backs — the Bills shifty QB, Tyrod Taylor, impressed for the second time in as many preseason games.
Only this time, he showed he could do it not just when pass plays break down, but from the pocket, an integral and increasingly elusive attribute in the 2010s NFL.
In front of as many empty orange seats as people at FirstEnergy Stadium, Taylor was sharp through the air (7-of-10 for 65 yards), deadly on the ground (four keepers for 41 yards) and smart with his decisions on his three first-half drives.
The Bills are desperate for good play out of the quarterback position, and Taylor is pushing Matt Cassel hard for the starting job. There are some weapons in the passing game -- Sammy Watkins, Percy Harvin, Robert Woods, Charles Clay and LeSean McCoy -- so Taylor could work his way into the streaming/QBBC conversation if he wins the starting job.
Buffalo Bills coach Rex Ryan told reporters Thursday he is "cautiously optimistic" that running back LeSean McCoy can return in time for the Bills' regular-season opener Sept. 13 against the Indianapolis Colts.
McCoy suffered a hamstring injury in a joint practice Tuesday with the Cleveland Browns. Ryan did not reveal the results of an MRI on McCoy's hamstring, but had said after Tuesday's practice that McCoy's hamstring was intact and that no separation from the bone occurred.
It’s safe to say that McCoy’s situation hasn’t improved. Sure, he’s going to a run-heavy system, so carries shouldn’t be a problem, but the Buffalo offense isn’t likely to be as efficient as Chip Kelly’s offense in Philadelphia. Throw in an offensive coordinator (Greg Roman) who isn’t known for utilizing his running backs in the passing game and it’s likely that McCoy’s red zone chances and targets will both decrease in 2015. Now he has a hamstring injury that could affect his Week 1 availability. We're steering clear of McCoy in the 2nd round.
Bills RB Fred Jackson has been on the shelf for almost two weeks with a hamstring injury, but he was moving well in work on the side with the strength and conditioning staff Tuesday night. At this point however, he’s got to follow doctor’s orders.
“We’ve got to follow the protocol, but we want to get back out there,” said Jackson in reference to himself and Anthony Dixon. “Obviously we’re hurting, but the more numbers that we have that’s going to take a lot (of reps) off everybody’s plate. So we’ll try to get back out there as soon as we can.”
Jackson figures to back up LeSean McCoy, who is dealing with a hamstring injury of his own. Running backs coach Anthony Lynn said he’d like to cut Jackson’s snaps/workload in half, so barring a long-term injury to McCoy, don’t expect F-Jax to rack up 14-plus touches per game like he did in 2014. However, even if we slice his PPG in half (to 6.7 per game in PPR formats) and extrapolate over a full, 16-game season, we end up with RB4-type numbers. He has upside from there if anything happens to McCoy.
Despite injuring his hamstring Tuesday, Buffalo Bills running back LeSean McCoy is expected to be ready for the team's regular-season opener against the Indianapolis Colts, a league source told ESPN NFL Insider Adam Schefter.
The 27-year-old McCoy strained his hamstring in training camp Tuesday and was set to undergo an MRI to determine its extent.
Bills coach Rex Ryan said McCoy's hamstring was intact and that no separation from the bone occurred.
We were already avoiding McCoy at his current price, and this hamstring injury only further dissuades us from drafting him in the 2nd round. Sure, McCoy is in a run-heavy system, so carries shouldn’t be a problem, but the Buffalo offense isn’t likely to be as efficient as Chip Kelly’s offense in Philadelphia. Throw in an offensive coordinator (Greg Roman) who isn’t known for utilizing his running backs in the passing game and it’s likely that McCoy’s red zone chances and targets will both decrease in 2015. We would assume Fred Jackson would be the main beneficiary if McCoy misses any games, but he's dealing with a hamstring injury of his own.
Bills running back LeSean McCoy limped off the practice field on Tuesday. Per a source with knowledge of the situation, the initial diagnosis is that McCoy has a strained hamstring. The severity of the injury isn’t yet known. Hamstring injuries not sufficiently severe to require surgery will heal with rest. The challenge becomes giving them the rest they need to fully heal. For McCoy, the severity will determine the duration of the absence. And it could require the Bills to get some short-term help at the position, with plenty of reps to be distributed during practices and preseason games.
In an update, McCoy will have an MRI, but HC Rex Ryan said the hamstring was intact, which he called a "positive." Fred Jackson is also banged up and Karlos Williams was hospitalized with an unknown injury and was expected to miss a lot of time so the Bills are currently hurting at the RB position.
Tuesday, August 18, 2015, 5:57pm
The Browns may have pulled a Rabbit out of a hat this season.
Receiver Travis Benjamin, a.k.a. The Rabbit, has quietly produced one of the best camps of all the wideouts this season, and is a virtual lock to the make the team after some folks had written him off.
In fact, coach Mike Pettine said Monday that the Browns are 'pretty set' with Benjamin as the lead punt returner, which pretty much secures a spot at the crowded receiver position.
And if Pettine asks for quarterback Josh McCown's input, he'll definitely get two thumbs up.
"Trav, he's a pro,'' McCown said after the first of two joint practices against the Bills here. "He just comes out and works hard, doesn't say a whole lot. He's got a great skillset as far as his speed. What Trav is doing really well right now is – you get a guy with speed like that a lot of time, but when the lights come on, either they play timid or they don't play at the high speed – Trav explodes off the ball every time we snap it, and because of that, he's using his speed to his advantage.
"It's causing space for him to get open, and that's why he's able to get balls. He's really doing a good job. Everybody's working really hard, but he's really helped us set a tone for how we're going to come off the football and work, and it's been cool to watch.''
Benjamin, entering the fourth and final year of his rookie contract, helped endear himself to McCown by waving his hand in the back of the end zone and catching a 2-yard touchdown pass against the Redskins. He's ranked way down our WR list, but with always a lot of turnover, and those who come and go at the position, he's another name to keep in mind perhaps later in the season.
There’s still no word about the specific ailment, but it looks like the rookie is going to be out for a while. Tyler Dunne of the Buffalo News reports, via a source, that the injury is “serious” and that Williams will miss multiple weeks while he recovers.
Williams’s injury adds to the injury woes that have thinned out a position of strength for the Bills over the last few weeks. Anthony Dixon has been out with a calf injury and hamstring woes have sidelined Fred Jackson and Bryce Brown, which left the team with LeSean McCoy and Bronson Hill as their healthy backs heading into Tuesday’s practice. Williams had passed Brown on the depth chart putting him as the team's RB3 so it's unfortunate timing for Williams.
Monday, August 17, 2015, 6:12pm
Bills undrafted rookie WR Andre Davis has put up some head turning plays the last couple of days. The beneficiary of additional reps Monday due to all the receivers pulling out of practice early, Davis had the catch of the day.
Davis pulled in a 35-yard touchdown pass from Matt Cassel. As the ball cleared his outside shoulder on the left sideline, Davis snared the ball with his left hand and pulled it in to his body as he reached the end zone behind the Cleveland cornerback.
“I had a go route. Cassel gave me a chance—great throw out there and I was able to put my hand on it and I grabbed it, brought it in,” said Davis. “It definitely was the best day at camp I’ve had. I got a chance to come out here and compete. We’re down a couple of guys and coach gave me a chance to come out here and compete. With the Browns coming in, I came in here and had a great opportunity and that’s what I did. I competed.”
“He’s doing a great job competing for the ball and he goes up and obviously has ability down the field,” said Cassel. “When he goes up he’s got good ball skills down the field. He’s a guy that has to continue to compete for a job and when he can show up like he did today that’s going to make an impression on the coaching staff.”
Monday, August 17, 2015, 6:00pm
EJ Manuel was a first-round pick of the Bills in 2013, although the fact that he’s working with the third team in practices and preseason games right now makes it clear that he’s not getting anything handed to him as a result of where he was selected.
When you’re working with the third team, it’s also clear that your roster spot is far from secure and Manuel isn’t operating under any illusions about where things stand for him in Buffalo. While talking to John Wawrow of the Associated Press on Monday, Manuel said that he was confident things would work out for him in the long term as long as he plays well but added that he doesn’t know if that means a future as the quarterback in Buffalo.
“At the end of the day, if I play well, it should take care of itself,” Manuel said. “Whether it’s here or whether it’s somewhere else, I don’t know.”
Manuel said he hasn’t given much thought to playing somewhere else, but that he understands “the business” may force him to consider it sooner rather than later. That might not be the worst thing for Manuel, given where he ranks in Buffalo’s pecking order but his chances of playing anywhere aren’t going to get better until that better play emerges on a consistent basis.
Monday, August 17, 2015, 1:57pm
The third-year receiver was immediately surrounded by athletic trainers, with one trainer sitting up Goodwin on the ground and holding him from behind while another trainer wrapped a towel around his neck.
After several minutes of sitting on the field, Goodwin walked off the field with trainers to the locker room. He is expected to return for Tuesday's joint practices, according to coach Rex Ryan.
Goodwin left last Monday's practice with an illness after Ryan said Goodwin vomited on the field. The Bills' third-round pick in 2013 suffers from both sickle cell trait and asthma, although it's unclear if either played a role in his condition Monday.
Receiver Chris Hogan also left Monday's practice with heat-related issues while fellow receiver Sammy Watkins did not finish because of glute soreness. With receiver Marcus Thigpen working at running back because of several injuries at that position, the Bills were down to four healthy receivers at the end of Monday's practice: Robert Woods, Dez Lewis, Andre Davis and Deonte Thompson.
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