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The Buffalo Rumblings Podcast: Mini-camp recap

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Re-evaluating the depth chart at QB and the offensive line

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In the latest edition of the Buffalo Rumblings Podcast, John Boccacino and Anthony Marino recap the latest news from One Bills Drive after the Buffalo Bills recently concluded their mandatory mini-camp.

The duo also breaks down changes to the depth chart at quarterback and along the offensive line, as several players, notably second-year quarterback Nathan Peterman, stood out from the crowd with a terrific performance during mini-camp.

The Bills are off until heading to St. John Fisher College in Pittsford, a suburb of Rochester, N.Y., for training camp, which begins July 26 and runs through August 15. New this year for training camp: special themed days like Pirate Day, Princess and Superhero Day, Wild West Day, and Military Appreciation Day. With only 12 practice sessions open to the public,

chances to see the Bills practice in Rochester seem fewer than in past years.

Among the intriguing positional battles, mini-camp shed some more light into the pecking order at quarterback, with Peterman and free agent signee AJ McCarron sharing repetitions with the first team.

Peterman, who most certainly has a chip on his shoulder after his inauspicious NFL debut, when he tossed five first-half interceptions in a loss to the Los Angeles Chargers, may have the early lead following a solid mini-camp performance.

Peterman appeared to take a big step forward in his attempt to win the starting role while McCarron, who seemed risk-averse during many of the practices observed by reporters, seems entrenched in the No. 2 role.

Prized rookie Josh Allen, whom the Bills are bringing along slowly, has seen almost exclusive repetitions with the third-string, though he did deliver an impressive 70-yard touchdown toss to fellow rookie Austin Proehl on the final play of mini-camp.

Boccacino and Marino also assessed the state of the offensive line following mini-camp. Our podcast team expects continued success from second-year player Dion Dawkins, who stepped in at left tackle and earned a grade of 74.5 from Pro Football Focus and was ranked as the second-best rookie offensive tackle. The right tackle position is cause for concern, as neither veteran Jordan Mills nor Marshall Newhouse, the free agent brought in as competition, inspire much confidence.

At right guard, Boccacino and Marino both identified John Miller as a player with a lot of pressure to perform. It appears Miller has regained his starting job one season after losing it to Vladimir Ducasse after Week 4.

Free agent signee Russell Bodine has been seeing plenty of reps at center, while Ryan Groy, a versatile swingman on the line, has seen plenty of playing time at left guard after many people predicted Groy would replace Eric Wood at center.

Finally, our podcasters discussed thoughts that former first-round pick Shaq Lawson—who has all the talent in the world but has yet to become the talented defensive end the team envisioned when it drafted him with the No. 19 overall selection out of Clemson in 2016—could be traded to a new team if he under-performs in training camp. Both Boccacino and Marino agree that trading Lawson would be a mistake.

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