Robey had ankle tweak, but good to go

Posted by Chris Brown on November 27, 2013 – 2:58 pm

On Monday and Tuesday in practice this week, Ron Brooks was seeing the majority of the work at slot corner with the starting defense. On Wednesday we found out why.

Nickell Robey had a minor ankle injury last week prior to the team leaving on a four day weekend for the bye.

“He had an ankle, he rolled it really during the last practice (last week) on Tuesday or Wednesday. I’m not even sure,” said head coach Doug Marrone. “All I know is he didn’t miss any time. We limited him one day, but he’s been out there the whole time he’s been 100 percent.”

Robey was back with the first unit in practice Wednesday full time, so it appears he’s all systems go. Brooks told he’s ready to step back into the role he used to man before his broken foot knocked him from the starting lineup if needed.

“It’s something that I’ve always done, went through a similar situation last year,” said Brooks. “It’s just part of the game, you learn to deal with it and learn to get back into the swing of things so I really haven’t missed a beat.”

It’s nice to see some depth in the secondary this late in the season.



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Posted in Inside the Bills

Robey up for Pepsi NFL Rookie of Week

Posted by Chris Brown on October 22, 2013 – 10:37 am

The Bills have had two other nominees this season already in EJ Manuel and Kiko Alonso. For his Week 7 performance in the win over Miami, undrafted rookie CB Nickell Robey is now up for the Pepsi NEXT NFL Rookie of the Week.

Robey had three pass breakups, an interception return for a touchdown, a pair of tackles and a quarterback hit. He’s going up against some good competition this week so here’s where you can vote for the latest Bills rookie making plays.

As his rookie campaign approaches the midway point, Robey’s game has finally reached critical mass where he trusts what his eyes are telling him and is going to make a play instead of being afraid to screw up.

“Coach always talks to us about really just saying to yourself that you can trust yourself back there in the secondary,” Robey said. “You tell yourself, ‘I see it on film, so I really have got to go get it and let everything go.’ One script it’s not like practice where you go over it three or four times. It’s one play and when that opportunity presents itself you’ve got to seize the moment. That’s what I think we did a better job doing and I felt yesterday I did that. My teammates congratulated me and that was the biggest feeling that I could feel from my teammates and the coaches.”

Posted in Inside the Bills

Robey explains end zone flip

Posted by Chris Brown on October 21, 2013 – 4:15 pm

Thad Lewis wasn’t the only one playing in front of his family on Sunday in Miami. Frostproof, Florida native Nickell Robey also had family in attendance at Sun Life Stadium and his interception return allowed him the opportunity to do the kind of end zone celebrations he did in high school.

“I got a little flip in the end zone. It was fun. I was having fun,” said Robey of his celebration following his 19-yard interception return for a TD. “In high school in Florida that’s what we always do. We always hit a flip into the end zone for our first touchdown. I did that and it’s called a Florida grind. You go in there and you hit a somersault in the end zone. I was home, my family was there. I was happy that I performed well so it was a great day.”

Robey said he visualized his interception in the days leading up to Sunday’s game.

“I actually told myself I was going to believe what I saw and go get it and I played it in my head and in the hotel room I watched a little film,” Robey said. “Coach always tells us to visualize yourself making plays. I do that on my own. If you’re any athlete you’re going to visualize yourself making plays so then to go out there and execute it was great.”

Posted in Inside the Bills

Robey ‘finally’ robs one

Posted by Chris Brown on October 20, 2013 – 10:50 pm

Manning the nickel corner position ever since Ron Brooks left the lineup in Week 1 with a broken foot, Robey has played admirably. The only thing missing in his first five starts was an interception. That changed on Sunday in Miami when he took a 19-yard pick to the end zone for a touchdown.

“I told myself if I get some hands on some balls soon enough, the interceptions will start popping up,” said Robey. “Sure enough, one came to me.  Coach is telling us  to expect it. Interceptions and fumbles, because in training camp I was accumulating interceptions. When I came out here my number was called. I went out there and executed it. I believe what I saw and went and got it.”

Robey jumped the route as Tannehill turned and fired on his pass attempt to Brandon Gibson.

For fans the expectations were understandably low for undrafted rookie Nickell Robey. So seeing him post a pick-six was great. For head coach Doug Marrone it’s something he had been waiting too long for in his opinion.

“He’s been really close and he’s been getting closer and closer,” said Marrone. “You’re all probably saying great play and I’m like, ‘Shoot it’s about time.’ He’s been really close, he really has. He has very good instincts. There was another play in the game he was close too. That’s why he was able to come in, you’re talking about a guy that was a college free agent and earned his way on the team and earned a spot in the nickel and is playing well.”

Robey said he saw that route several times on film during the week, which helped him anticipate the throw he took the other way Sunday.

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Posted in Inside the Bills

Other encouraging McKelvin numbers

Posted by Chris Brown on September 20, 2013 – 12:22 pm

As we profiled today on Leodis McKelvin is off to a solid start as one of Buffalo’s starting cornerbacks this season. Here are some other promising figures connected to his play.

Through two NFL games, no other cornerback has played as many snaps as McKelvin according to ProFootballFocus and despite being on the field for more plays than any other cover man, McKelvin ranks in the top 15 in passer rating allowed.

McKelvin is holding opposing quarterbacks to a passer rating of 51.9. That’s good for 14th best in the league.

Also encouraging is nickel corner Nickell Robey’s passer rating against is just 64.1, good for 19th, but he’s only been targeted nine times in two games. McKelvin has been targeted more than any other cornerback in the league with 26, yet he’s allowed just 10 completions.

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Posted in Inside the Bills

Undrafted makes roster again

Posted by Chris Brown on August 31, 2013 – 4:48 pm

It was somewhat of a forgone conclusion knowing that Jeff Tuel was going to make the 53-man roster, but for the 10th time in the last 12 seasons an undrafted rookie has made Buffalo’s final roster for the regular season.

Tuel along with CB Nickell Robey made the 2013 roster with both surviving the final cutdown to 53. Here’s a look back at the undrafted rookies that made the roster over the past 12 seasons.

2002 – RB Joe Burns, DE Grant Irons, OL Mike Houghton
2003 – LS Jon Dorenbos, WR/KR Antonio Brown
2004 – S Rashad Baker, CB Jabari Greer, DE Constantin Ritzmann, RB Shaud Williams
2005 – S Jim Leonhard
2006 – LB John DiGiorgio
2009 – LB Ashlee Palmer, LB Garrison Sanborn
2010 – LB Antonio Coleman, OL Cordaro Howard, WR David Nelson, WR Donald Jones
2011 – LB Robert Eddins
2012 – S Delano Howell
2013 – QB Jeff Tuel, CB Nickell Robey

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Posted in Inside the Bills

Robey to start at LCB

Posted by Chris Brown on August 16, 2013 – 6:11 pm

Undrafted rookie Nickell Robey is the starter at LCB tonight.

With McKelvin and Crezdon Butler inactive Robey has been given the nod.

Ron Brooks started opposite Stephon Gilmore last Sunday but Doug Marrone wants to get Brooks more work in the slot.

Posted in Inside the Bills

5 performances you might’ve missed

Posted by Chris Brown on August 12, 2013 – 11:54 am

There were a number of quality individual performances in Buffalo’s first preseason game that made the highlight reel, but there were some that flew under the radar Sunday. Here’s a look at some of the better play turned in by some players you might not have noticed watching the game live.

Crezdon Butler – The cornerback was noticed on his second quarter interception off a tipped pass by Manny Lawson that led to a Bills field goal, but Butler had two other pass breakups in the game to lead the team with three. Those other two both came on third downs. One was on a 3rd-and-6 play at the Bills 26, which forced the Colts to settle for a FG. The other was on a 3rd-and-5 at the Colts 13, which forced a punt. He also had a third down tackle on a 3rd-and-2 bringing down Nate Palmer for no gain to force another punt. A really nice effort for the corner that’s been running with the second unit.

Jarron Gilbert – The reserve defensive lineman wasn’t dominant, but turned in a few plays that helped the defense get off the field. He had a quarterback pressure on a 3rd-and-5 that led to a Colts punt. Gilbert also had a tackle for loss on a pass to Colts back Kerwynn Williams out of the backfield dropping him for a loss of two. He had a pass breakup to his credit too.

Shawn Powell – Powell, who was coming off his best practice of camp, punted very well Sunday. He only kicked twice, but boomed a 55-yarder to the Indianapolis 15. Accomplished return man T.Y. Hilton unfortunately had a 15-yard return on the play. His other punt from his own 28 he launched out of bounds at the Colts 26 on a 46-yard effort. His best work however, may have come on his holds as he had to reach outside his body frame to get a couple of field goal snaps down in time for the kick attempts.

Nickell Robey – Robey had just a couple of tackles on defense holding receivers short of moving the sticks on both, but more importantly he proved himself capable as a punt returner. He looked elusive on his three return attempts. He had a long of just 14 yards, but he averaged 11.7 yards a return and made coverage players miss. Anytime a punter can average better than a first down (10 yards) you’re considered very productive.

DeMarco Sampson – Sampson got 28 snaps, but only 15 were pass plays. He had four receptions for 49 yards late in the game. Three of his catches went for first downs. He also drew a pass interference penalty that gave the Bills a first down on a third-quarter TD drive.


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Posted in Inside the Bills

USC products back at practice

Posted by Chris Brown on May 20, 2013 – 11:16 am

The Bills got some of their rookies back on the practice field with their college classes finally graduating this past week.

USC products Robert Woods and undrafted CB Nickell Robey were both back practicing after missing last week’s OTAs.

Cal’s Aaron Tipoti was also back at practice after missing last week.

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Posted in Inside the Bills

Robey, Woods all too familiar

Posted by Chris Brown on May 11, 2013 – 6:05 pm

It was a scene that had played out a countless number of times in the practice setting at USC. Cornerback Nickell Robey lined up opposite wide receiver Robert Woods. The only difference was they were doing it as NFL players more than 2,000 miles away from the USC practice field Saturday.

Woods, a second-round pick of the Bills and Robey an undrafted rookie corner, were lined up opposite one another on a handful of snaps Saturday at practice. Robey has lined up almost exclusively in the slot in rookie minicamp, and Woods saw some time inside as well.

Woods, who made six receptions in practice Saturday, got lucky on one play when Robey, attempting to make an INT, only got a fingertip on the ball, and Woods pulled in the pass for a reception and a run after catch.

The two former Trojans have talked a lot about repeating their college practice battles now at One Bills Drive.

“That’s exactly how it feels and we talk about it all the time,” Robey told “We’ve been in different meetings, but we talk about the same thing that we did as USC. It’s good to see things come together and see him out here healthy running around and seeing me out here healthy running around. So all in all it’s great.”

Robey, who has some of the quickest feet among the rookie DBs, did have an interception return for a touchdown on the very next play after his battle with Woods.

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Posted in Inside the Bills