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Buffalo Bills vs. Pittsburgh Steelers: NFL Preseason, Week 2 open thread

Josh Allen and Stefon Diggs make their preseason debuts tonight!

Buffalo Bills v Arizona Cardinals Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images

The Buffalo Bills are in the Steel City tonight, ready to take on the Pittsburgh Steelers for a Week 2 NFL preseason showdown. For Bills Mafia, Josh Allen and Stefon Diggs will finally make their preseason debuts, though how much they actually end up playing is anyone’s guess despite head coach Sean McDermott saying starters would play around a quarter and a half.

These preseason reps for Allen and Diggs are likely to be their only opportunity to warm up in a game setting ahead of the regular season. That is to say: they’re important, even if both players are undisputed all-time Bills whose jobs are as secure as it gets.

Most fans will be paying close attention to the ongoing battles at middle linebacker, CB2, WR3, and WR6/7. Linebacker Tyrel Dodson made headlines twice this week due to heated interactions he took part in. Sean McDermott once again proclaimed concern about some of his players, when stating that the guys fighting for a chance to start at MLB needed to show more consistency and better leadership. Will A.J. Klein leapfrog the entire group and claim the starting MLB role as the long-tenured veteran who well-understands McDermott’s defense?

Of course, it’s anyone’s guess at this point who grabs hold of the third wide receiver role. Between Trent Sherfield, Deonte Harty, Khalil Shakir, and even Andy Isabella, the competition will remain intense. Speaking of Isabella, he continues to turn all the right heads. A late-camp addition, Isabella at minimum seems to be well-positioned to grab one of either the sixth or seventh wide receiver role, if the team rosters seven. Justin Shorter figures into that equation as well, mostly due to the fifth-round draft pick used to bring him to Orchard Park, NY this spring.

At cornerback, it’s a perceived dead heat between Dane Jackson, Kaiir Elam, and Christian Benford. While most fans hope one of the three claims the CB2 role, it’s also just as likely the team decides to platoon the position to at least begin the season, utilizing each of the three when and where best-suited.

Safety Damar Hamlin returns to his home city, and Tyler Matakevich (fresh of the PUP list) makes his debut this season against the team that drafted him in 2016. It’s certain to be an emotional evening for both men.

Here’s your open thread for tonight’s game. The same as last week, one thread to rule them all for your evening. As always, please be kind, respectful, and engaging with your fellow Buffalo Rumblers. Go Bills!