clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Five Bills Players That Need More Playing Time

This morning, we talked about the Buffalo Bills' new opportunity to get rookie running back C.J. Spiller more involved in the offense. As the Bills continue to play Jenga with their roster, sliding pieces in and out of place while hoping full-fledged implosion doesn't occur (and it may have already), there are a few more young players that need to be on the field as frequently as possible. This list might be longer than five names, depending on your perception, but these five players need as much exposure to the NFL game as they can get.

Kraig Urbik, guard: Reportedly, Bills head coach Chan Gailey is not enamored with the size or physicality of his starting offensive line. The 6'5", 323-pound Urbik - acquired on waivers just prior to the start of the regular season - is a massive, physical player that brings some muscle to a line that lacks it. If Buffalo likes him enough, there's no reason not to integrate him into the lineup for more than just a handful of plays and in garbage time - even if it means sliding Eric Wood to center and benching new offensive captain Geoff Hangartner.

Torell Troup, nose tackle: Troup has not gotten a lot of playing time, as his transition to the NFL game has been a struggle. He is having difficulty staying gap sound and controlling blockers, and as a result, Kyle Williams is still getting the lion's share of the work at nose guard. There's no substitute for experience, so the Bills need to bite the bullet and get Troup into the lineup far more frequently than they are now, particularly since Williams is versatile enough to play more than one position if the team insists he stay in the lineup.

Alex Carrington, defensive end: He made his NFL debut in Week 4, and like the rest of his teammates was handled with ease by the Jets. Carrington is in the same situation as Troup - he's a rookie that is learning, and attempting to refine, techniques that should be fairly foreign to him. Even when Marcus Stroud makes a healthy return to the lineup, there's no reason that Carrington shouldn't be getting live work in run fits.

Aaron Maybin, outside linebacker. Jerry Sullivan was as on-point as he's ever been when, after Sunday's loss, he asked Chan Gailey how Maybin wasn't able to get onto the field in an already-porous run defense. The theme here remains the same: Gailey's not happy with Maybin's run defense, and the best way to get him used to doing it at a high level is to let him do it. This is about much more than run defense, though - Maybin needs opportunity to prove himself roster-worthy or bust-worthy, and he also needs a great deal of experience standing up if he's going to survive in the 3-4. There's no good reason to continue to give the starting Jack reps to a journeyman like Reggie Torbor.

Arthur Moats, outside linebacker: Moats saw limited action against New York as a stand-up outside linebacker, and looked fairly lost. The weird experiment of moving Moats - a defensive end at James Madison - to inside linebacker seems to be over, however, as the Bills are trying to find a serviceable pass rush. Moats has that ability, but just needs more opportunity to refine his technique. It would be very easy for the team to take Chris Kelsay off the field in nickel and dime situations, where Kelsay is usually blitzing from a standing position, and give those reps to a higher-upside player with much better athleticism. He'll need to get healthy first, of course.

Again, the theme here is developing players. There's the approach the team is taking - slow development. Then there's trial by fire. I think all five of these guys are ready for the latter approach; you're free to disagree, and tinker the list as you wish, in the comments section.