Inside The Bills

Injury update

Posted by Chris Brown on November 22, 2009 – 4:56 pm

Eric Wood suffered the most serious injury, but three of his teammates also suffered injuries.
Guard Seth McKinney suffered a knee injury and did not return. DT John McCargo suffered a calf injury. And Marshawn Lynch suffered a shoulder injury in the first half and did not return.

We’ll have updates on their status for Sunday’s game against the Dolphins when Perry Fewell holds his Monday press conference though he did say McCargo, Lynch and McKinney are day to day.


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Thurs. player radio appearances

Posted by Chris Brown on October 28, 2009 – 4:54 pm

Here’s the list of Bills players scheduled to appear on local and national airwaves on Thursday.

Keith Ellison – Morning Bull, 103.3 The Edge @ 7:15 AM. If you’re outside the listening area you can also listen online.

James Hardy –1260 WNDE in Indianapolis @ 2 PM

Terrence McGee – Sirius NFL Radio with Marty Schottenheimer & Solomon Wilcots @ 1:50 PM

Seth McKinney – 97.5 ESPN Radio in Houston @ around 2 PM


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Fan Friday 10-16

Posted by Chris Brown on October 16, 2009 – 1:47 pm

Fan Friday 10-16
We plow ahead into Week 6. The Bills might be struggling, but we press on with Fan Friday. Questions go to AskChris@bills.nfl.net.

 
1. Chris,
 
Quick question.  With the injury to Poz, who on the defense has the ‘headset’ in the helmet?  Is it Buggs, or is it Ellison?  Thanks.
 
-Paul
Lifelong Bills Fan, Ex-WNYer now living in Maryland

CB: Well when Poz first went out and was replaced by Marcus Buggs, Buggs had the radio helmet. When he was replaced by Kawika Mitchell, he had the radio helmet. And finally when Mitchell was hurt last week against Cleveland, Keith Ellison grabbed the radio helmet.

But with Poz expected to start this week (he’s probable), Poz will have the radio helmet with Ellison as the backup provided he plays. Catch all that?

 

2. Chris,
 
I was wondering why McGee hasn’t been taking kickoffs in place of McKelvin? In my opinion, McGee was one of the best kick returners we had in many years. Thanks!
 
Steve Barker
Fredericksburg, VA

CB: Truth be told Buffalo’s kick return average has improved from the first week McKelvin went out until now, albeit marginally (20th to 18th). That being said, you will get no arguments from me about putting McGee back there. He’s one of the best kick returners I have ever seen. However, he is nursing a sore knee so giving him extra work really isn’t an option this week.

 

3. Chris,
Has the NFL addressed the possible expansion of the 53 man roster due to all the injuries on every club,every year?
Al in Syracuse

CB: I don’t see it changing because more players means more payroll and less profit for NFL owners. I know coaches would like to see it, but unless the new CBA negotiations add games to the regular season schedule (18 game regular season) I can’t see the roster size increasing.

 

4. Chris;
 
Thanks for taking my question.  Do you think Coach Jauron has any thoughts on playing Jamon Meredith to see what he has?  I do not see the Bills doing much this year and with Butler on I-R.  At least get some game action with Meredith and see what he can do.  He can’t be any worse.
 
Also, why was Seth McKinney playing goal line defense in Miami?  Was it merely a case that McCargo was inactive and they needed an extra wide body?
 
Thanks,
Pete  

CB: Jamon Meredith is expected to start Sunday with Jonathan Scott out due to an ankle injury. So it seems they’re willing to try him there, but making your first NFL start on the road alongside another rookie is a precarious situation as I see it. Guess we’ll find out what he can do in a hurry.

As for McKinney, you’re correct. McCargo was inactive for the Miami game, so with just three defensive tackles active, they needed another wide body in there for goal line defense.

 

5. Hi Chris,
 
2 part question for you:
1. Wondering how James Hardy’s rehabilitation is going with his knee? I think I remember you writing that the Bills have the first 6 weeks of the season to decide whether or not to bring him to the active roster or to permanantly place him on IR for ’09. 
2. If they bring him back, which player comes off the roster at this point?
 
Thank you,
Anthony

CB: James is doing very well. What can happen after Monday Oct. 19 is he can become eligible to begin practicing with the team if they feel he is ready to do so. That would begin a 21-day practice period in which he can practice with the team, but he does not have to be added to the active roster during that time.

At the end of the three week practice period the team must decide at that time whether to add him to the active roster or put him on season-ending injured reserve. And yes another player would have to be waived to make room for him on the roster. Who that player is would be up to the coaching staff.

The staff does not have to begin practicing him this week. They could wait another week or two weeks to begin the 21-day practice windown period.


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Thursday player radio appearances

Posted by Chris Brown on October 1, 2009 – 2:08 am

Here’s the rundown of where you can find your Buffalo Bills on the airwaves and when Thursday.

Seth McKinney  – 640 AM WFTL, Ft. Lauderdale, FL @ 7:05 AM

George Wilson – Morning Bull, 103.3 The Edge @ 7:15 AM

Lee Evans  – Sid Rosenberg Show – 560 AM WQAM, Miami, FL @ 1:40 pm

Aaron Maybin – Big O Show – 560 AM WQAM, Miami, FL @ 2:10 PM


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Another jersey number change

Posted by Chris Brown on September 10, 2009 – 6:55 pm

Another Bills player is making a jersey number change.

Seth McKinney, who was wearing 66, will now be wearing jersey #68.


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Fan Friday 8-14

Posted by Chris Brown on August 14, 2009 – 1:25 pm

Training camp is winding down, with three days left at St. John Fisher after today. Still some time before the regular season however. Let’s see what you’ve got for me this week.

1. Hi Chris,
Do you think one of the reasons the Bills have been reluctant to deal with the strong outside linebacker spot is because they plan on using Maybin there (as well as DE)?
Mark (State College, PA)

CB: I don’t believe that’s the main reason why, but it could be a factor. The Bills defensive staff really likes what they’re getting out of Nic Harris so far in the preseason. I believe he’ll push Keith Ellison, but ultimately experience will win out there. But Maybin I believe will be used as a rush linebacker in addition to getting snaps at defensive end. I think where he lines up will depend a lot on down and distance.

 

2. Hey Chris,
I was lookin at your Q&A regarding safties.  You didn’t mention Ko Simpson.  So you think he will be cut this training camp?  I think
that would be a shocker, considering he is young and his experience.  But I guess I can see, with the addition of Byrd, they may not have
the room. Do you think the Bills may look at trading him?

Shawn Sieracki
Dallas, Texas

CB: I think Ko Simpson is a bubble guy in this camp due mainly to the presence of Byrd. Though he hasn’t set foot on the practice field yet, Byrd was taken in the second round for a reason, to get on the field sooner rather than later. Buffalo did not get a single INT from their safeties last season. That has to change. Byrd had 17 INTs in college in three seasons.

If he shows any kind of promise in the preseason games he plays in and doesn’t look lost, he could be a starter before this season is over. Either way he’s a lock to make the roster.

In all likelihood the team keeps five safeties. Right now here’s my list of who I think they keep. Whitner, Scott, Wilson, Byrd and Wendling. Wilson and Wendling make it because they’re more valuable special teams players than Simpson.

 

3. Chris,
Nice job on the site.  How do you see the O-line situation developing…the situation at guard has been often discussed, but a couple of situations I am interested in is (1) Demetrius Bell – probably not a starter this year, but from what I saw last year it seems like he might have the athletic ability to be a LT – do you see him starting in yr 3 or 4?  Also, what do you see happening at backup center, Brandon Rodd or have somebody like Seth McKinney cover backup at guard and center?

CB: With Bell I think they see him as the heir apparent to Langston Walker, who three years left on his deal counting this season. I believe Bell is left tackle caliber. He’s certainly athletic enough. I think he’ll be the team’s swing tackle this fall.
At center Brandon Rodd has done okay as the backup. You’re right Seth McKinney does have NFL experience there, but he has not seen reps in the pivot thus far. I think he would be an option though. I don’t anticipate them putting Eric Wood in there either, despite the fact that he played there in college.

 

4. Hey Chris, 
 
I’ve noticed in most of your articles dealing about the LB position, you always mention Ellison only having two players to battle with for the starting position, Bowen and Harris. Why isn’t Pat Thomas mentioned at all? Is Thomas battling for a back up position behind Kawika or Poz? If Thomas isn’t being considered to battle with Ellison, do you see him actually making the team?
 
Thanks,
Brian Craig (Walworth, NY)

CB: Pat Thomas is battling for the backup MLB role with Marcus Buggs. It’s been a heated competition with the two of them flip flopping back and forth in the backup role behind Poz. As for Ellison his greatest competition looks like it’s going to be Harris. Bowen has been largely on the weak side in camp.

 

5. Hi Chris,
 
The battle to land a spot on the roster at corner is one that I find most intriguting on the Bills this season. How many corners do you figure will make the roster? Which ones?
 
Thanks,
Anthony

CB: I think the top four or five corners are easy to determine, but do they keep a sixth is the question. McGee, McKelvin, Florence, Youboty and Corner all make the roster as I see it. Then if they decide to keep a sixth I believe it’s Ellis Lankster. Cary Harris and Lydell Sargeant probably go to the practice squad.


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Fan Friday 6-5

Posted by Chris Brown on June 5, 2009 – 8:25 pm

OTAs are almost over and then it’s three days of minicamp before the six week break. Hard to believe training camp is around the corner. On to your questions.

1. Hello Chris,

What are the chances the Bills trade Kelsay with or without Parrish to get Scheffler? Denver needs to improve their defense and we need to get a TE badly. We also have Maybin now… And shouldn’t we sign one of the remaining free agent linebackers? It seems like if we could be put this all together, the Bills could be a real competitor this year. What do you think?

Thanks,

Preston

CB: I don’t see it happening, mainly because Denver has recently come out and said how much they intend to make use of Scheffler in their offense. Some might see that as window dressing to move him, but knowing that Kyle Orton won’t be slinging it downfield nearly as much as Cutler did for Denver, makes Scheffler that much more valuable as an intermediate receiving threat. Minus Cutler Denver will need to hold onto all the offensive talent they’ve got and Scheffler is too valuable to part with.

 

2. Chris,
What is the situation with Shawn Nelson?
How much are Xavier Omon and Marcus Smith being used in practice?  Do they have a reasonable chance of making the 53 man roster?  Do you see the team keeping a backup center, and if so, who?  Do you think Chris Ellis is making much progress, I expected a little more from him last year (I know you can’t expect too much from rookies).  Are any of the undrafted guys making much of an impression (maybe Ashlee Palmer?)
Thanks for the updates.
Chris

CB: Shawn Nelson was dealing with some personal issues this week according to head coach Dick Jauron. He’s expected back next week. 

As for Xavier Omon and Marcus Smith, one is seeing more time than the other. Smith is being rotated in with the second team defense. He subs in for Spencer Johnson and has done okay. Again it’s hard to assess line play in the OTA setting because there isn’t live contact and hitting in the trenches. He’s an interesting prospect after he spent last year on the practice squad.

Omon’s reps have been limited with Lynch, Jackson and Rhodes ahead of him. In fact Bruce Hall, last year’s practice squad back has seen more reps than Omon this week. We’ll see if that continues, and if it does Omon has an uphill climb to make the roster.

Ellis is progressing. He’s working with the second team on defense and sharing reps with Copeland Bryan on the right side. Again line play is not something you can asses in the OTA setting. We’ll see how far he’s come when we get to training camp.  

 

3. Hi Chris,  just a question on who you believe will emerge as our starting strong side linebacker….is it possible that Mitchell will be moved to the strong side and a smaller linebacker will take over on the weak side…thanks again for all your insight…Ray

CB: I think that’s a tough one to answer. So everyone is clear Keith Ellison plays the strong side with Mitchell on the open or weak side. That’s been the same through OTAs. I think it’s Ellison’s position to lose. His greatest competition at the spot will be Alvin Bowen and rookie Nic Harris. Ellison is obviously the most experienced in the system and one of the smartest players on the team. That goes a long way with this staff. I think one of the other two candidates will have to show greater playmaking ability and equal smarts to take the spot away from him.

 

4. Hey Chris,
Following the Bills in the OTAs this year, I’m noticing Aaron Schobel was participating early on but now has been absent for a while. Is everything okay with him? I’m hoping he hasn’t re-injured his foot or that it wasn’t quite healed after all. Pease let us know.
Cheers
Andy-Toronto

CB: Schobel is fine. He was here for the first week of OTAs and has chosen to skip the remaining voluntary practice sessions which run through Monday. He’ll be here for the mandatory minicamp which begins on Tuesday. In the time he was here he said his foot felt good and that he was encouraged by how it responded to three straight days of work. Hopefully that continues through minicamp.
5. Chris, you’ve wrote a lot about “would be” sacks, and I was wondering how the offensive line is doing? Do you think that they show any early signs of meshing well together? I know that it takes time to get the cohesiveness down, but I feel this season’s success hinges on just that happening. On paper they have a team that can contend for a playoff berth, but I really think that it comes down to the o-line.
 
Thanks…Bryan – Canandaigua NY

CB:  I agree with you that a lot of Buffalo’s offensive success will hinge on the offensive line’s ability to jell with five guys in five new positions up front. As for the pass pressure and ‘would be’ sacks a lot of them are coming on blitz calls, which at this point in time the offensive line isn’t always ready to handle and adjust to. That’s part of why it’s so important for the starting five, whoever they wind up being, spend as much time together as possible.

That being said I will say that Seth McKinney and Geoff Hangartner did a heck of a job picking up a blitz by Paul Posluszny and it enabled Trent to hit Lee Evans for a 65-yard touchdown play.

We’ll get a better assessment in training camp and the preseason.


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Fan Friday 5-22

Posted by Chris Brown on May 22, 2009 – 11:00 am

OTAs are underway and fans are checking up on their favorites. Enjoy the holiday weekend everybody. I’ll catch up with you on Tuesday… unless something happens between now and then.

1. Hey Chris,
With OTAs underway, everyone’s really excited to see what’s going on with T.O. I’m more interested in how my boy Marshawn Lynch is looking. How has he fared so far in the OTA sessions? Has he seen less carries to make way for Fred and Dominic?

Jay
Macon, Ga.

CB: Lynch has looked explosive and has bobbed and weaved well in and out of traffic and through holes. He also looks smooth in the passing game. I think the second year in Turk’s offensive system is allowing him to play faster, which is a scary thought.

With respect to Fred and Dominic, Rhodes is just getting a handle on the system and is being used sparingly. Jackson meanwhile has been split out a lot, and I mean a lot. More so than he was last year. That’s very telling considering the depth the Bills have a WR. Jackson has been out wide more than Parrish as far as I have seen.

 

2. hey chris, thanks for taking time to answer the question. besides the potential signing of tinoisamoa, are the bills looking at upgrading their linebacker core by free agency or are they content with who they have on the roster?
 
ryan

CB: I think Tinoisamoa remains an option, but at the right price. He’d be no more than a two down LB for the Bills because I think Poz and Mitchell would still be the nickel LBs, so spending big money wouldn’t make sense. As for upgrading linebacker, I think they’d look at it, but I don’t sense it as being a major pressing issue for them. They’ve got some young talent in Bowen.

 

3. Hey Chris,
Just wondering,who are the 5-10 walk ons or udfa s that the Bills have brought forward.
Every spring I love these guys because the Bills always gives them a fair shake and because they are there primarily because they love the game.

CB: Well there weren’t as many signed as initially anticipated. The tryout players from the rookie camp that were signed were CB Kyle Ward, long snapper Garrison Sanborn and DE Jermaine McGhee. Sanborn probably has the best chance to land on the practice squad.

 

4. With the trade of Peters and a big boost to out WR will Buffalo go get some Vet. help for our line so Edwards can have time to throw the ball?? I know in FA there is still Jon Runyan and even ol’ Jonas Jennings do you think we will go after them and if not why???

CB: I don’t see either player as an option. Buffalo has some depth at backup tackle. Kirk Chambers has proven to be a steady swing tackle and Demetrius Bell looks like he’s ready to provide competition for that role. Runyan is at the end of the line and gutted it out last season. Jonas Jennings was injury prone as a young player here. Now that he’s older I don’t see that situation improving. Liked him as a player, but it’s more about availability. As for interior veterans they picked up McKinney and Chambers is working at guard.

 

5. Hey Chris,
I know we drafted Shawn Nelson who I like a lot but with all the WR we have this year I was wondering what you think about Steve Johnson getting converted to TE. He has the size and body, I like Steve and really hope he gets more playing time but I would really like to see him at TE. No LB will be able to keep up with his speed and his hands are solid I think he would be one of the best TE in the game.
matt from Rochester

CB: It’s an interesting proposal, but I don’t see it happening. I think Johnson has a good chance to see more time on the field. He established a good chemistry with Trent Edwards down the stretch last season and I believe will be featured in the slot during four wide formations. You’re right he knows how to pluck the ball out of the air and can shield defenders from the ball. I think he’s got a bright future.


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Edwards on TD throw to T.O.

Posted by Chris Brown on May 18, 2009 – 7:42 pm

Trent Edwards was asked about his 60-yard bomb for a TD to Terrell Owens during the first OTA practice session. Edwards offered the following.

“It was a pump route,” said Edwards. “We had run a route, which is just a deep route the play before and I had missed my read and I wanted to do it again on the opposite side to Terrell, and it was just a matter of putting the ball up and allowing him to make a play and that’s kind of what we need to do here.

“That’s why we brought him in here to do that and that’s why we brought in those guys up front, because they need to block for me. They need to block and allow us to make plays and throw the football like that.”

Interesting that Edwards referenced the offensive line, in particular the new guys in Hangartner, Wood and Levitre. In all likelihood those three will be entrusted with keeping the pocket intact long enough for Edwards to deliver on those kinds of plays.

Wood and Levitre didn’t begin with the first unit. Kirk Chambers was at left guard and Seth McKinney was at right, but both were replaced for reps during series by Wood and Levitre. It’s evident that the coaching staff wants them in the lineup sooner rather than later, and after making them first and second round picks this spring you understand why.


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McKinney adds to competition

Posted by Chris Brown on April 9, 2009 – 11:04 pm

I think it’s safe to consider Seth McKinney another piece of interior offensive line puzzle.

He could emerge as a starter at left guard or he could be a backup at left guard and center. At worst he’s a depth player, and being able to play more than one position is likely what attracted the Bills to the seven-year vet in the first place.


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