The Buffalo Bills will take the Growney Stadium field at St. John Fisher College in just a few short minutes for their eighth training camp practice of the season. It's also their second night practice, and it's safe to say that this should be a fun night for all in attendance.
Rookie offensive guard Eric Wood (pictured at right during this morning's walk-through) will be hitting the practice field for the first time after signing his five-year, $13 million deal on Wednesday night. We hope to read plenty of optimistic tweets from thatguy34, who is subbing in for MattRichWarren as our de facto camp reporter this evening. Any updates thatguy34 sends our way will be updated after the jump, so make sure to refresh early and often as the evening wears on.
Once practice ends, the Bills will unveil their brand-spankin'-new white throwback uniforms, which they will wear in the 2009 season opener on Monday Night Football in New England. They're going to look great, folks. The evening will conclude with fireworks. That's all for later at the moment; right now, make the jump to talk about the important stuff - what's happening on the field.
7:11 PM: Jon (which is thatguy34's real name, and much shorter to type than thatguy34) reports that eight players are sitting this practice out: WR Steve Johnson, TE Shawn Nelson, DE Copeland Bryan, DT John McCargo, DT Marcus Smith, DT Ventrell Jenkins, S Dustin Fox and S Jairus Byrd.
7:21 PM: The Bills are running throughh some one-on-one blocking drills at the moment, and Jon reports that tight ends Derek Schouman and Jonathan Stupar are more than holding their own against the Bills' defensive ends. Schouman reportedly tossed Jermaine McGhee aside with ease.
Derek Fine has done well, too, though Jon did mention that he's been beaten twice by Aaron Schobel and Ryan Denney.
From the end standpoint, Chris Ellis has shown a few nice pass-rushing moves, including an impressive swim move and some of the quickness that made him a third-round pick a year ago.
7:28 PM: It's not just the tight ends blocking, folks - the running backs are working against the linebackers in blitz pickup drills. Kawika Mitchell blew by Xavier Omon with ease, but 2007 draft classmates Marshawn Lynch and Paul Posluszny had a nice tussle, with Lynch, according to Jon, barely getting the upper hand.
7:30 PM: The team has moved to 11-on-11 work. Eric Wood, as expected, is splitting first-team reps at right guard with Seth McKinney. That said, this should be music to your ears: Jon reports that Wood and Brad Butler opened up a gaping hole on a run play. Kinda makes me wish I was there to see those two blue-collar badasses work together.
7:37 PM: As proof that Terrell Owens is, in fact, human, he has dropped three consecutive passes in one-on-one drills with the cornerbacks. Justin Jenkins, meanwhile, is channeling his inner-T.O., as he's posted two nice grabs. In running drills, Fred Jackson made a nice cut up the middle for a big gain - only to be flattened by a nice lick from John Wendling.
7:39 PM: Roscoe Parrish is running the Wildcat again, but Buffalo's defense is defending it rather well. A Parrish keeper was stuffed by Ryan Denney. Parrish handed to Lynch on two plays after that, and both of those went for minimal gains as well. As long as our defense is handling the Wildcat, I'm good; this offense probably won't be a big part of Buffalo's attack next season.
The one curious wrinkle to the Wildcat is running an option play out of it, which the Bills have done on a few occasions tonight - quarterbacked by both Parrish and Fred Jackson.
7:59 PM: After some run-of-the-mill punt coverage drills, the Bills are now working 7-on-7. Drayton Florence continues to line up as the first team nickel back. Trent Edwards hooked up on a long touchdown strike with Terrell Owens over Leodis McKelvin, but threw a poor ball in the next play that McKelvin broke up. Bryan Scott intercepted a tipped pass and took it to the house.
Here's a lineup tweak to note: Reggie Corner and Ellis Lankster are running with the second-team defense outside at cornerback, with Ashton Youboty lined up inside at nickel.
8:12 PM: This is a fun one from Jon: "Dear Lord, Ryan Fitzpatrick looks bad. His passes have no zip and every one is behind the receiver." How absolutely fantastic is that?!
8:19 PM: The team has moved to 11-on-11 work, and - yes - we've seen another screen pass. Geoff Hangartner and Seth McKinney were out in front as lead blockers, and the offense picked up a nice chunk of yardage. The four guards currently in competition - Chambers, Levitre, McKinney and Wood - are rotating in with the first series every few plays.
8:22 PM: I asked for an update on the linebacker rotation, and Jon kindly obliged. Pat Thomas (Mike), Jon Corto and Alvin Bowen are currently the second-unit 'backers.
8:31 PM: Bobby April has K Rian Lindell kicking 50-yard field goals. With the entire team huddled around him screaming. Sweet.
8:43 PM: Marcus Stroud sniffs out a reverse. Practice is winding down, with the first team offense facing off against... ball boys?
8:57 PM: That's all she wrote for the field portion of the night, which is all we'll cover here. The team is about to show a 50th Anniversary video and then unveil the new uniforms.