While head coach Sean McDermott informed his team of the decision earlier in the week, the rest of us will have to wait until tonight to see whether Nathan Peterman, AJ McCarron, or prized rookie Josh Allen starts under center when the Bills (0-1) face the Browns (1-0) in Week 2 of the preseason.
The Bills showed different wrinkles to their offense during their preseason debut, a 28-23 loss to the Carolina Panthers at New Era Field. All three QBs managed to move the sticks and put points on the board for the Bills, while Kelvin Benjamin (four receptions for 59 yards and one TD) showed why the Bills traded for him at last year’s trade deadline.
The wide receiver position is still muddied, but former first-round pick Corey Coleman should make his Bills debut against his former team. Fans will surely be interested to see how well Coleman, Zay Jones, Jeremy Kerley, Rod Streater, Andre Holmes, Malachi Dupre, and the rest of the wide receiver corps perform as the position’s pecking order gets sorted out.
LeSean McCoy suited up but did not play in the opener, while Marcus Murphy (seven carries for 35 yards with a touchdown, four receptions for 30 yards) made a strong case for claiming Buffalo’s No. 3 running back role. Will Shady see the field in Cleveland, or will the veteran be held out of another preseason game?
Besides the skill positions, there are still question marks along the offensive line, notably at center, where neither Ryan Groy nor Russell Bodine has seized the job following Eric Wood’s offseason retirement.
On the other side of the ball, Trent Murphy is nursing “a little nagging” groin injury, and his status for the game is still up in the air. In his absence, it will be interesting to see how the rotation shapes out between Shaq Lawson, Kyle Williams, Jerry Hughes, Star Lotulelei, and Eddie Yarbrough.
Tremaine Edmunds and Lorenzo Alexander should make up two thirds of the starting linebacking corps tonight, while Matt Milano and veteran Keenan Robinson were splitting reps at weakside linebacker during the final week of training camp.
While the offense took center stage during the preseason opener, tonight’s game could prove a great opportunity for the defense, particularly the secondary — with Tre’Davious White, Vontae Davis, Micah Hyde, and Jordan Poyer — to show its dominance against former Bill Tyrod Taylor and No. 1 overall pick Baker Mayfield.
Go ahead and post your observations around the starters below, and be sure to check back later for a new open thread when the reserves enter the game.