Lynch returns to practice; Peters still sitting


Lynch practices, should play in Week 17 (buffalobills.com)

After resting his ailing shoulder injury on Wednesday, Buffalo Bills running back Marshawn Lynch returned to practice Christmas Day and, barring any unforeseen setbacks, should be available for the Bills' season finale home tilt against the New England Patriots.

Veteran linebacker Kawika Mitchell, who also missed practice Wednesday with a knee ailment, returned to practice yesterday and, like Lynch, should be available Sunday.

Meanwhile, Pro Bowl left tackle Jason Peters missed his second straight day of practice Thursday, leaving his status for Sunday's Patriots game much more up in the air.  Kirk Chambers filled in for Peters in last Sunday's win over Denver, and he would get the call once again if Peters is unable to go.  There is no word on whether Peters will play through his knee injury to avoid missing a second straight Pro Bowl.

Receiver Roscoe Parrish (knee) missed practice both Wednesday and Thursday as well; he injured his knee in practice prior to Sunday's win, but was able to play.  If he can't go, rookie Steve Johnson is likely to see more playing time.  Johnson has recorded a touchdown reception in each of Buffalo's past two games.

Cornerback Jabari Greer, like last week, was limited the past two days, and his status will likely be questionable for the Pats game.  Linebacker Teddy Lehman will also likely be questionable.

  Speaking of Jabari Greer, Chris Brown of the official site spoke with the corner about his upcoming free agency. Greer didn't exactly keep it a secret that he'd prefer to stay in Buffalo, but also seems to realize that names like McKelvin, Corner and Youboty could lead to his landing elsewhere. Regardless, he's about to see a significant increase in pay.

  ESPN.com's Tim Graham gives us another article in which we hear that head coach Dick Jauron still has the respect and admiration of his unified locker room. For a second straight week, the Bills will theoretically be playing to save their coach's job. That's a great sentiment and all, but when did playing to win become inadequate motivation for a football team?

  Well, if playing to win and saving your coach's job isn't enough motivation, receiver Josh Reed's got it right: playing to spoil a Patriots playoff bid is certainly motivating. 10 straight losses to the Pats might dull some of that enthusiasm, however...

  Jerry Sullivan decides to set aside his campaign against Dick Jauron to sing the praises of Bill Belichick. Having respect for what a man's done is one thing, but using the success of an enemy to repeatedly poke at your own organization's downfalls is, quite frankly, a bit too nauseating for my taste. Maybe you disagree.

  Joe P ought to enjoy this one. Mark Gaughan thinks the Bills would be smart to buck their trends and draft a tight end that is one-dimensional (read: a pass-catcher). I agree. The Bills have two very good, well-rounded tight ends in Derek Fine and Derek Schouman to do the dirty work at the position. They can be excellent reserves. A guy like Oklahoma's Jermaine Gresham, for example, would diversify Buffalo's inconsistent offense in ways that Fine and Schouman can only dream of.

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