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Bills training camp 2014: updated 53-man roster projection

Ten days after the Buffalo Bills reported to St. John Fisher for training camp, let's discuss what has changed and take another stab at a 53-man roster projection.

Kevin Hoffman-USA TODAY Sports

Ten days ago, as the Buffalo Bills were just starting to arrive at St. John Fisher for training camp, I published a pre-camp, 53-man roster projection. Now that the Bills are seven practices deep and less than a week away from their preseason opener, let's quickly re-assess some things on that front.

No position is more difficult to figure out than the offensive line right now, thanks largely to the status of starting left tackle Cordy Glenn. He has now missed the first week of camp due to an undisclosed illness, and while he has been spotted working with trainers - sometimes intensely - a timetable for his potential return has not been established. Coupled with second-round pick Cyrus Kouandjio struggling (he has yet to take any reps away from Erik Pears at right tackle), the Bills may be in a situation where they need to start the season with at least four tackles on the roster.

Add in the fact that there's an ongoing right guard competition between Kraig Urbik and Chris Hairston, and things are nearly as difficult to figure out on the reserve side. Hairston is fighting for a starting job while rookie Cyril Richardson has been buried on the third team, so the former makes the cut while the latter doesn't in favor of Doug Legursky, who offers more positional versatility. The Bills have enough quality developmental talent on the line where it would be surprising if they kept fewer than nine linemen, but Glenn's availability and two ongoing position battles make projecting there extremely difficult for the moment.

Even though the linebacker position is still tough to read, enough has settled defensively where it's a touch easier to make educated guesses. That's especially true along the defensive line and in the defensive backfield. Where it gets tricky is trying to single out new guys that can play special teams; several young players (Jimmy Gaines and Kenny Ladler chief among them) have impressed early in camp, but they'll need to perform well on teams during the preseason to really maximize their chances of making the roster.

In all, the projection you see below only has three back-end changes from the one that was published a week and a half ago. Things will really pick up this weekend when the Bills take on the New York Giants in the season-opening Hall of Fame Game.

Pos. # Starter # Backup # Reserve # Reserve
WR 10 Robert Woods 19 Mike Williams 15 Chris Hogan
LT 77 Cordy Glenn 66 Seantrel Henderson
LG 74 Chris Williams

C 70 Eric Wood 59 Doug Legursky
RG 60 Kraig Urbik 75 Chris Hairston
RT 79 Erik Pears 71 Cyrus Kouandjio
TE 84 Scott Chandler 85 Lee Smith

WR 14 Sammy Watkins 88 Marquise Goodwin 81 Marcus Easley
QB 3 EJ Manuel 9 Thad Lewis 7 Jeff Tuel
FB 38 Frank Summers
RB 28 C.J. Spiller 22 Fred Jackson 26 Anthony Dixon 35 Bryce Brown
Pos. # Starter # Backup # Reserve # Reserve
RE 55 Jerry Hughes 91 Manny Lawson
UT 95 Kyle Williams 96 Stefan Charles
NT 99 Marcell Dareus 90 Alan Branch

LE 94 Mario Williams 92 Jarius Wynn
WLB 53 Nigel Bradham 45 Jimmy Gaines
MLB 51 Brandon Spikes 52 Preston Brown
SLB 56 Keith Rivers 57 Ty Powell 93 Randell Johnson
CB 21 Leodis McKelvin 37 Nickell Robey 33 Ron Brooks
S 23 Aaron Williams 27 Duke Williams
S 25 Da'Norris Searcy 36 Jonathan Meeks

CB 24 Stephon Gilmore 20 Corey Graham 29 Ross Cockrell
Pos. # Starter # Backup # Reserve # Reserve
K 2 Dan Carpenter
P 8 Brian Moorman
LS 65 Garrison Sanborn