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Bills Beat Blog



By Joe Buscaglia
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Bills training camp observations: Day 15

The Buffalo Bills returned to the field on Sunday afternoon to one of the muggiest weather days once camp started in July. Some of the players were a bit feisty as well, leading to some raised voices and some heightened interactions.

However, everything was kept under control and all safe and secure while the rest of the team worked through one of their final practices before heading off to Pittsburgh. Who stood out? Here are some notes from the day:

Mike Williams: EJs new best friend?
- When in doubt, throw it up to Mike Williams. That seems to be part of EJ Manuel’s reasoning over the past couple of weeks. Williams has really stepped up his game over the past two weeks and is proving to be quite the dependable target for Manuel when they need some yards in a tough spot. Once again, Sunday showed off the wide receiver’s red zone abilities. He uses his basketball background to rise up and meet the ball at it’s highest point, and also has the penchant for getting both feet down. He did that in the end zone, where Manuel got him the ball in the tightest of spaces for him to get his feet down. He did, and it was a touchdown. The role for Williams could be even bigger than originally thought when they acquired him.

Goal line RB
- Fred Jackson has been one of the mainstays in the Buffalo Bills organization, a fan favorite and a leader in the locker room. Among those characteristics and his hard-nosed running style, for whatever reason, he has historically struggled to punch the ball into the end zone from the goal line. He can do it, but not nearly at as high of a rate that would be indicative of his talent level. With that in mind, the Bills could have quite the goal line specialist on their hands in Anthony Dixon. He shows a general disregard on those plays and gets into the end zone at a higher rate than what Jackson has done in 2014. The Bills are in the business of getting seven points rather than just three, and if they have to bring in someone else to do it, they probably should give it a high amount of consideration.

Cranky Fred
- Fred Jackson was not the happiest of campers on Sunday afternoon. He got into the faces of some of the defensive backs, and while that shouldn’t be considered to be all that serious, he let his feelings known after practice. Jackson essentially said that the two practices following a game weren’t ideal, but then said they’re professionals and will do what’s necessary. That isn’t all for Jackson, he voiced his general disapproval of heading to Latrobe, Pennsylvania for the upcoming joint practices with the Pittsburgh Steelers after having been asked if he was excited for them:

“No not at all, it’s just going to be two days of games. It’s going to be a game on Wednesday and a game on Thursday then on Friday we get a day off and then a game on Saturday, but it is what it is, we’ve got to do that and get through it and take every possible advantage of it and get better.”

It’s clear one didn’t want to get on Jackson’s bad side on Sunday. Click here for more on the feisty practice.

Bradham continuing to improve
- Heading into training camp the weakside linebacker position was one that many people thought would have been more of a battle than it has been. That’s not to say rookie Preston Brown or anyone else has done poorly enough to gift the job to another, but third-year player Nigel Bradham has just taken the chance and run with it. Bradham has displayed good quickness and recognition during camp and the preseason games, showing off with solid reps against the run and against a screen on Sunday’s practice. Even though he’s suspended for the first game, there hasn’t been any lingering doubt as to who will get that job when the season opens up.

Don’t read into 23 with the 2s
- The past two days of practice free safety Aaron Williams has been getting time on the field with the second-team, paving the way for Duke Williams and Da’Norris Searcy to take all the first-team reps. This could seem peculiar at the start, but don’t read anything into it. It’s simply a case of the coaching staff wanting other players to familiarize themselves in working with one another ahead of the regular season. If Aaron Williams happens to get injured, they want the transition for the combination of Duke Williams and Searcy to be seamless from a communication perspective. Head coach Doug Marrone added that they have been quite happy with the work that Aaron Williams has done to this point.

Day 15 MVP: WR Sammy Watkins
- Another day, and another pretty outlandish one-handed catch for Sammy Watkins. He even shocked quarterback EJ Manuel with his one grab in team drills. The throw was both behind and high of Watkins, he reached back with his left arm and had it stick to his glove like glue, one-handed. The play drew a big “ooh” and “aah” from the crowd and for good reason. It was likely better than the catch he made earlier in camp that went viral.

Day 15 LVP: QB Thad Lewis
- As camp has progressed it just seems like Thad Lewis is on the wrong page with his receivers more often than anyone else. There are always mixups in communication during a camp, but it’s happening with him and resulting in turnovers during team drills at a much higher rate than with any of the other quarterbacks. Perhaps it’s the result of him working with second and third-team players, but it’s become an alarming regularity.

Up Next: The Bills have Monday off and then resume practice Tuesday morning at 8. Practice will once again be open to the general public.

Twitter: @JoeBuscaglia

**Photo courtesy of The Associated Press


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Topics : Sports
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Locations : LatrobePennsylvaniaPittsburgh
People : Aaron WilliamsDoug MarroneDuke WilliamsFred JacksonManuelMike WilliamsNigel BradhamNorris SearcyPreston BrownSammy WatkinsThad Lewis




 
08/10/2014 6:26PM
Bills training camp observations: Day 15
Please enter your comments below.
08/10/2014 7:53PM
So the players are angry because they had to practice the day after a game!
Could these guys be further removed from the real world? Boohoo, I feel just terrible, how brave to endure this. Wonder how'd they'd do if Christmas was there 8th straight day at work, and they had to cover for someone? When you really examine this, the players are fragile, constant chronic injuries, and they are sheltered.
08/10/2014 8:23PM
Awe some of the Bills are overtired
I feel so badly that they have to work. They should be hourly, then they wouldn't be so abused, very selfless dudes.
08/10/2014 11:58PM
Tom Calandra
Your one of those idiots who just wanna stir things up. Watkins deal was a great move as was mike Williams. I bet if I checked u hate EJ as well and would like Fitz back. You sif are a moron.
08/11/2014 7:55AM
Two is enough
I don't blame the guys, too many pre season games, they have all been doing this since they were kids. By now if they can't play, remove them from the team. Same with the coach. Players will be exhausted by mid season. Keep them fresh. It's a long season as it is, two pre season games are enough
08/11/2014 6:41PM
@So the players....
When you really examine your comment...ummm...scratch that, anyone with a half functioning brain would see that you are an idiot whose brain is further hampered by envy and likely a deep seeded dislike for blacks by simply casually examining your comment. I'm sure your job includes the physical abuse of a football game or practice for that matter. Your brain functions are a joke, like most republicans.
08/11/2014 6:50PM
Idiot
The guy who comments on commission. In ALL professions it's the knucklehead salespeople who make 4-5 times as much as the average admin, managerial, or factory worker. They're completely clueless as to how the operation works, and live on Fantasy Island. They get a huge monthly expense check then still send in outrageous amounts of weekly "expenses". All they do is Bullsh*t and commiserate with the customer. Must be nice. Never saw a salesperson live in a house under 250K and of course most always drive the brand new standard ultra-conservative cars like Camry's or Malibu's. 90% of these people don't there as**ole from a hole in the ground but make far, far more than the people who make the product. Salespeople dont sell products, products sell themselves. You can EASILY compare a professional sports player to a salesperson sir.
08/11/2014 7:48PM
Bad Vibes
I've got that feeling that the Bills are gonna suck this year....STILL.
08/11/2014 8:05PM
Club Marve
The big fellas wanna bring back Club Eugene Marve Levy!! Bruce used to hold out until the last week of camp so he could hang out and eat.
08/12/2014 12:02AM
Don't like it?.....Goodbye
The fact Fred couldn't score at the goal line for how many straight plays, and now he's complaining about the coach's practice schedule. .seems to me like Fred doesn't like that he's not the best player on a bad team anymore. Time for him to go.
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