PITTSFORD, NY – The Buffalo Bills second to last practice at St. John Fisher College was an eventful one to say the least. Throughout the morning session things got chippy between a handful of players, leading to several of them being pulled out of team drills.
Those fireworks were Monday’s big story, but not the only one. Here’s 5 observations from the 14th day of training camp:
1) McDermott stops practice
At one point early on in practice, following a series of miscommunications on the offense, Sean McDermott actually stopped practice, got the team on a knee and went on a profanity-laced tirade in an attempt to get them refocused. The overarchring theme of the spectacle was preparing to be winners. For what it’s worth, the beginning of practice did seem to lack energy – perhaps with the end of training camp weighing on the players minds. Either way, McDermott’s speech seemed to work because the intensity picked up the rest of the way and led to several skirmishes towards the end of practice.
2) Tempers flare
Following the speech from McDermott, things started getting more physical out on the field, especially once the team transitioned into 11-on-11 red zone work. It started with WR Walter Powell getting in safety Colt Anderson’s face after a play, which got players from both sides of the ball involved as the two were seperated. A few plays later right tackle Jordan Mills and linebacker Ramon Humber got into it, with Shaq Lawson joining in late. One play later Lawson was actually pulled out of the drill for going after Mills again, while other scuffles broke out between WR Zay Jones and CB Leonard Johnson, as well as DE JErry Hughes and RB Mike Tolbert. Even Tyrod Taylor exchanged some words with Hughes before Richie Incognito directed him back to the huddle. It was certainly the most tense day of practice thus far.
3) Defensive rotations
Kevon Seymour returned to practice on Monday after dealing with a foot injury over the last week and was immediately inserted onto the first-team, filling Ronald Darby’s vacated right cornerback position. Rotating in with him every few plays was undrafted rookie Greg Mabin. Meanwhile, veteran CB Shareece Wright, who was primarily lining up in that spot yesterday, missed practice with a sprained thumb. It’s looking like a three-way competition for the job even after camp concludes. DE Eddie Yarbrough and DT Adolphus Washington also saw reps with the first-team defense, occasionally rotating in with Shaq Lawson and Kyle Williams repectively.
4) Peterman remains with the twos
After being promoted to the second team on Sunday, rookie QB Nathan Peterman was unsure if his switch with veteran T.J. Yates was perminent. Well, for at least one more day it was, as Peterman again took all the second-team reps on Monday. The real indicator of where the two quarterbacks stand could come during Thursday’s preseason game with the Eagles. If Peterman is the first man up once Tyrod Taylor and the first-team offense are done for the night, it’s realistic to think the backup QB job is his to lose.
5) No Jordan Matthews
New Bills wideout Jordan Matthews was in street clothes on Monday after suffering what the team called a chip fracture in his sternum. Apparently the injury occured early on during Sunday’s practice; his first with the team. Right now Matthews is considered week-to-week and it’s unclear if he’ll be ready for Week 1.
Next: The Bills wrap up training camp tomorrow morning with a 8:45 a.m. session at St. John Fisher College.
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