All but two of the 90 players currently with the Buffalo Bills were present and accounted for as the team convened for the start of its voluntary Organized Team Activities on Tuesday. Joe Buscaglia of WGR 550 reports that the only two players not in the building were rookie safety Delano Howell - who is completing college course work at Stanford - and veteran pass rusher Shawne Merriman, who is currently seeking clearance from his doctor to participate, according to head coach Chan Gailey.
The team and several reporters were tweeting live from the first practice this afternoon; the notes that follow are an amalgamation of tweets from @BuffaloBills (the team's official Twitter feed), @JoeB_WGR (Buscaglia), @gggaughan (Mark Gaughan of The Buffalo News) and @ChrisBrownBills (Chris Brown, the Bills' lead journalist).
- Stevie Johnson was in the building but not working out, and the Bills tweeted that the following receivers saw time with the ones: T.J. Graham, Derek Hagan, Marcus Easley and David Nelson. Absent from mention (perhaps conspicuously so, but perhaps not): Donald Jones. (Brad Smith was working with the quarterbacks.)
- Two starting offensive linemen - Eric Wood and Erik Pears - were non-participants. Therefore, the first-team offensive line, from left to right, was Cordy Glenn, Andy Levitre, Colin Brown, Kraig Urbik and Chris Hairston. No surprises there.
- Things were not particularly surprising along the defensive line, either (though we imagine some of you may have raised eyebrows after reading the next bullet point). Kyle Williams and Torell Troup were not participating at defensive tackle, though Williams - coming off of foot surgery himself - did participate in one-on-one drills. He was replaced on the first unit by Dwan Edwards (who lined up next to Marcell Dareus, of course); Alex Carrington and Kellen Heard were the second-team defensive tackles.
- Out at defensive end, Mario Williams was the first-team left end, though he did play both sides of the line. Chris Kelsay was the other first-team end, relegating Mark Anderson to the second unit. Joining Anderson on the second-unit line at end: Spencer Johnson, who lined up true to his roster listing at BuffaloBills.com after all.
- At cornerback, three players saw time with the first team with veteran Terrence McGee sitting out: Leodis McKelvin, Stephon Gilmore and Aaron Williams. McKelvin and Gilmore started the day with the ones, and Williams eventually worked in, likely as a nickel back. The Bills seem primed to give McKelvin the Trent Edwards treatment the year following McKelvin's demotion to dime back.
- Who says the Bills don't have any competition for Garrison Sanborn at long snapper? Danny Batten was spotted snapping to Brian Moorman during special teams drills, adding to his potential value to the club.
- Aside from the previously-mentioned veterans, other non-participants included receiver Kamar Aiken, tight end Mike Caussin, cornerback Cris Hill and safety Joshua Nesbitt.