2014 DRAFT GUIDE
5 things we know about Bills, Lions from preseason

By JOHN WAWROW - AP Sports Writer
    2013-08-30 03:15

ORCHARD PARK, N.Y. (AP) - The only encouraging news to come out of the Buffalo Bills' preseason finale occurred about 90 minutes before the opening kickoff.

That's when rookie first-round pick EJ Manuel, dressed in shorts and a T-shirt, tested his injured left knee by throwing numerous passes to several teammates and coaches.

Otherwise, what followed was a meltdown for the Bills (2-2), who unraveled in a 35-13 loss to the Detroit Lions (3-1) on Thursday.

Matt Leinart struggled in his Bills' debut, going 3 of 10 for 11 yards passing before being yanked after the 2004 Heisman Trophy winner threw his second interception. Just as bad, coach Doug Marrone announced after the game that two-time Pro Bowl safety Jairus Byrd traveled to North Carolina to see a specialist after complaining about a previously undisclosed foot injury.

Quarterback remains Buffalo's most pressing need. If Manuel's not ready to practice by Wednesday, the Bills are prepared to have undrafted rookie Jeff Tuel open the season against New England on Sept. 8.

The Lions, by comparison, rested most of their starters, and watched their backups make quick work of another AFC East opponent a week after a 40-9 rout of New England.

---

Here are five things we know about the Lions from the preseason:

WHERE'S ZIGGY? The Lions remain tight-lipped on the status of rookie first-round pick, defensive end Ezekiel ``Ziggy'' Ansah. Coach Jim Schwartz said Ansah didn't travel with the team because he was hurt, but wouldn't provide any details on the nature of the injury. Ansah is believed to have hurt his head after colliding with offensive lineman Leroy Harris in practice Saturday. ``He was one of three guys that didn't travel. The guys that didn't travel, we thought it best to leave them home,'' Schwartz said. When pressed further, he added: ``I'm not going to comment anywhere else.''

DOMINANT D: Even without Ansah, Ndamukong Suh and other defensive regulars, the defense continued to create turnovers. After forcing four turnovers against New England, Detroit picked up three against Buffalo to finish the preseason with nine (four interceptions). They also added two sacks for a total of nine this preseason.

DROPSIES: With receivers Calvin Johnson and Ryan Broyles sitting out, Nate Burleson and Patrick Edwards failed to shore up Detroit's depth at the position. Burleson dropped an easy pass from starter Matthew Stafford, and also had one go off his hands that ended up an interception. Edwards dropped two passes, but did make up for it with an 8-yard TD catch from backup Shaun Hill to open the scoring.

BENTLEY AND SLAY: Backup cornerbacks Bill Bentley and rookie second-round pick Darius Slay had solid outings. Slay made a solid play in breaking up Leinart's pass up the left sideline intended for speedster Marquise Goodwin on the Bills' first play from scrimmage. Bentley had the Lions first interception, stepping in front of Leinart's pass over the middle to set up the game-opening TD.

O-LINE SET? Schwartz still isn't ready to name his starters at right guard and right tackle, but said he's encouraged by how the competition has gone. ``When it's all said and done, the entire body of work is what we'll evaluate,'' Schwartz said. ``We'll be fine at both those positions.'' Tackle Jake Scott, a free-agent addition, and rookie guard Larry Warford both started their second consecutive games.

---

And five things we know about the Bills:

OFF-LINE LEINART: Leinart's debut in Buffalo lasted a little more than a quarter. And that's left him worried whether his future with the quarterback-needy Bills will last past Saturday, when the team makes its final cuts. ``It's disappointing,'' Leinart said. ``I was thankful to be here, and we'll see what happens. Obviously, after that performance it can't be anything good I would think. But we'll see.''

A THAD BETTER: While Leinart struggled, newly acquired quarterback Thaddeus Lewis had a comparatively better outing. Acquired Sunday in a trade with the Lions, Lewis finished 7 of 16 for 132 yards, including a 79-yard TD pass to Marcus Easley in the fourth quarter. Lewis also had seven carries for 51 yards.

NO DB DEPTH: With Byrd's status uncertain and starting cornerback Stephon Gilmore (broken wrist) to miss six to eight weeks, the Bills are lacking capable replacements. Cornerbacks Crezdon Butler and T.J. Heath, and rookie safety Duke Williams were burned several times on Thursday.

LOSING LEGURSKY: The Bills signed free agent Doug Legursky to compete for the starting job at left guard. That competition appears to be over after Legursky was carted off the field in the third quarter after sustaining what Marrone feared was a ``major'' injury.

FIRST-DOWN DROUGHT: When RB Tashard Choice scrambled off left tackle for 7 yards to convert a 2nd-and-7 on Buffalo's third possession, it ended a stretch of nine straight drives that ended with three-and-outs. The first-down drought dated to the second quarter of the Bills' 30-7 loss at Washington on Saturday.

---

AP NFL website: www.pro32.ap.org

Fantasy Football Player Notes RSS FeedPLAYER NOTES

D.J. WilliamsAug 22 05:12p

Free-agent DT Anthony McCloud (Cardinals), WR Jabin Sambrano (Falcons), DT Marcus Forston (Patriots), TE D.J. Williams (Patriots) and DE James Ruffin (Buccaneers) all cleared waivers Friday, Aug. 22.

Damien WilliamsAug 22 04:58p

Miami Dolphins RB Damien Williams has leapfrogged RBs Daniel Thomas and Mike Gillislee on the depth chart.

Jalil BrownAug 22 03:22p

The Miami Dolphins released CB Jalil Brown Friday, Aug. 22.

Michael EgnewAug 22 03:02p

The Miami Dolphins waived TE Michael Egnew Friday, Aug. 22.

Emmanuel SandersAug 22 11:22a

Denver Broncos WR Emmanuel Sanders (quadriceps) had a full practice Thursday, Aug. 21, and he could play in his first preseason game Saturday, Aug. 23.

Isaac RedmanAug 22 10:52a

Free-agent RB Isaac Redman (back) said he is no longer able to play football after suffering a spinal cord injury in 2013.

Christian PonderAug 22 10:42a

Minnesota Vikings QB Teddy Bridgewater is entrenched as the No. 2 quarterback, and the team is confident with him there. QB Christian Ponder could be traded if he performs [ More ]

Brandon BostickAug 22 08:22a

Updating a previous report, Green Bay Packers TE Brandon Bostick (leg) has a slight fracture of his fibula and could return by Week 2 or Week 3.

Sean SpenceAug 22 01:02a

Pittsburgh Steelers LB Sean Spence (knee) and Jason Worilds (knee) are not expected to have suffered serious knee injuries during the team's preseason game Thursday, Aug. 21, according to sources.

Doug MartinAug 22 12:52a

Tampa Bay Buccaners RB Doug Martin was called the team's 'bell cow' running back by head coach Lovie Smith.

Heath MillerAug 22 12:42a

Pittsburgh Steelers TE Heath Miller had a team-high five catches for 53 yards, including a 27-yard touchdown reception, in the team's preseason game Thursday, Aug. 21.

Nick FolesAug 22 12:12a

Philadelphia Eagles QB Nick Foles completed 19 of 29 passes for 179 yards with one touchdown and one interception during the team's preseason game Thursday, Aug. 21. He led [ More ]

LeSean McCoyAug 21 11:42p

Philadelphia Eagles RB LeSean McCoy (thumb) said he expects to be ready for the regular season after spraining his right thumb during the team's preseason game Thursday, Aug. 21.

Sammy WatkinsAug 21 10:22p

Buffalo Bills WR Sammy Watkins (ribs) did not participate in team drills during practice Thursday, Aug. 21, and he has not been cleared to play in the team's preseason game Saturday, Aug. 23.

Max StarksAug 21 09:32p

Arizona Cardinals OT Max Starks (ankle), LB Kevin Minter (pectoral) and OG Jonathan Cooper (toe) did not practice Thursday, Aug. 21.

Brandin CooksAug 21 09:12p

New Orleans Saints WR Brandin Cooks (illness) returned to practice on a limited basis Thursday, Aug. 21, and he is questionable for the team's preseason game Saturday, Aug. 23, [ More ]

Victor ButlerAug 21 09:12p

New Orleans Saints CB Rod Sweeting (undisclosed) and LB Victor Butler (undisclosed) did conditioning work on the side with trainers during practice Thursday, Aug. 21.

LeSean McCoyAug 21 09:02p

Philadelphia Eagles RB LeSean McCoy's (thumb) X-rays on his right thumb came back negative, but he will not return to the team's preseason game Thursday, Aug. 21.

Jeremy MaclinAug 21 08:52p

Philadelphia Eagles WR Jeremy Maclin (knee) walked off the field under his own power after falling and clutching his right knee during the team's preseason game Thursday, Aug. 21.

LeSean McCoyAug 21 08:32p

Philadelphia Eagles RB LeSean McCoy (thumb) left the team's preseason game Thursday, Aug. 21, and went to the locker room for X-rays on his right thumb.

Le'Veon BellAug 21 07:52p

Pittsburgh Steelers RB Le'Veon Bell started against the Philadelphia Eagles Thursday night as he waits for a possible suspension after being charged for driving under the influence and marijuana possession.

Kenny BrittAug 21 07:32p

St. Louis Rams WR Kenny Britt (shoulder) may sit out of the team's preseason game against the Cleveland Browns Saturday, Aug. 23, with a shoulder injury. Britt did practice this week, however.

William HayesAug 21 07:32p

St. Louis Rams WR Jordan Harris (undisclosed), LB Pat Schiller (undisclosed), DE Sammy Brown (calf), DT Matt Conrath (undisclosed), DE William Hayes (undisclosed) OG Barrett Jones (back) and C [ More ]

J. VanderveldeAug 21 06:22p

Philadelphia Eagles WR Josh Huff (shoulder), RB Chris Polk (hamstring), WR Brad Smith (undisclosed), CB Brandon Boykin (leg), LB Jake Knott (hamstring) and C Julian Vandervelde (back) are not [ More ]

Reggie WayneAug 21 05:32p

Indianapolis Colts WR Reggie Wayne (knee) is a game-time decision against the New Orleans Saints Saturday, Aug. 23, according to head coach Chuck Pagano.

Darnell DockettAug 21 05:12p

Arizona Cardinals DT Darnell Dockett (knee) was placed on Reserve/Injured Thursday, Aug. 21.

Fendi OnobunAug 21 05:12p

Jacksonville Jaguars TE Fendi Onobun (knee) has cleared waivers and was placed on Reserve/Injured Thursday, Aug. 2.

Mike CaussinAug 21 05:12p

Washington Redskins TE Mike Caussin (undisclosed) was placed on Reserve/Injured Thursday, Aug. 21.

Isaiah PeadAug 21 05:12p

St. Louis Rams RB Isaiah Pead (knee) has cleared waivers and was placed on Reserve/Injured Thursday, Aug. 2.

Joe MaysAug 21 04:42p

Kansas City Chiefs LB Joe Mays (wrist) will have surgery on his wrist, according to a source. Mays was hurt in last week's preseason game against the Carolina Panthers. [ More ]

Eric WeemsAug 21 04:02p

The Atlanta Falcons signed free-agent WR Eric Weems (Bears) Thursday, Aug. 21. Terms of the contract were not disclosed.

Manti Te'oAug 21 03:42p

San Diego Chargers OG Jeromey Clary (shoulder, hip), WR Vincent Brown (calf), LB Manti Te'o (foot), DT Sean Lissemore (ankle), SS Jahleel Addae (hamstring), DE Lawrence Guy (shoulder) and [ More ]

RSS Feeds

NFL News:
 
Player Notes:
 
Forum Posts:
 

© 2014 RealTime Fantasy Sports, Inc.
Email Us  ·  Call Us 636.447.1170  ·  Lost Password
Advertising represented by USA Today Sports Media Group