The Buffalo Bills begin their trio of 2023 NFL preseason games on Saturday, August 12 when they host the Indianapolis Colts at Highmark Stadium in Orchard Park, NY. This weekend’s game is the Bills’ only home tilt during the preseason, before road matches against the Pittsburgh Steelers in Week 2 and Chicago Bears in Week 3. This weekend’s game also marks the return of the Bills’ annual Kids Day event, presented by Fisher-Price®.
Head coach Sean McDermott announced Thursday that quarterback Josh Allen and wide receiver Stefon Diggs will not play this weekend. That’s to be expected, understanding McDermott likely wants to protect the biggest components of the offensive engine. We’re likely to see additional starters used sparingly or held out entirely (apart from those already ruled out to injury), allowing coaches to evaluate the middle and back ends of each position group within the framework of three warm-up games. All that’s to say: Don’t expect to see most of the usual starters beyond cameo appearances.
There are some important starting roles that need to be established, chief among them at MIKE linebacker, CB2, and WR3. Unfortunately, linebacker Terrel Bernard suffered a hamstring injury that could sideline him for a bit. That may open the door for Tyrel Dodson and Baylon Spector to battle it out for rights to start next to linebacker Matt Milano. Of course, all eyes will be on the team’s offensive line unit, considering the investment made this offseason to once again overhaul the room.
Perhaps the most-anticipated player hitting the field will be rookie tight end Dalton Kincaid. He’s already established himself as one of Allen’s favorite targets, and he’s been far and away the best player among the team’s draft picks this past April.
Expect a vanilla game plan from both teams, to avoid unnecessarily showing their hand. For those of you unable to attend training camp this summer, it will your first opportunity to watch Buffalo’s newest players in action. There are always underdogs we flock to, and surprise performances from players who position themselves to make the Bills’ final 53-man roster.
It all starts against the Colts on Saturday!