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2023 Bills Rookie Report: Multiple draft picks waived on NFL cutdown day

Two Bills 2023 NFL Draft picks amongst cuts on Tuesday

NFL: Preseason-Indianapolis Colts at Buffalo Bills Mark Konezny-USA TODAY Sports

The Buffalo Bills have made their one and only round of roster cuts ahead of the 2023 NFL season on Tuesday afternoon. The roster has taken shape with 27 players released on Tuesday. That’s of course outside of some tidy work to do on Wednesday with the waiver wire and potentially any players put on the in-season Injured Reserve (IR) list.

A number of rookies were impacted by the moves made on the afternoon. Let’s discuss the moves made that impact the youngsters and review some of what went on during last weekend’s third and final 2023 NFL preseason game.

TE Dalton Kincaid

Kincaid didn’t have to sweat out cutdown day, as he’s solidified a large role in the regular-season offense through camp and three preseason games. Kincaid didn’t record a catch against the Bears on Saturday, but he did draw two penalties as he continues to show off as a pass catcher. Kincaid won’t be a full-time player in this offense, but his role for a rookie tight end is set to be massive.

Bills fans should be extremely excited about the prospects of Kincaid as he takes his first leap into true NFL action in less than two weeks.

IOL O’Cyrus Torrence

The rookie second-rounder seemed to be behind early on in the right guard competition with veteran Ryan Bates. That turned over on its head once games began, with Torrence showing extremely well in all three exhibitions. The release of Greg Mancz — one of the Bills’ most versatile offensive lineman — is interesting with Bates another swing piece who can play all five spots on the line. The release of Mancz could signal that Bates is set to be that swing piece backup once again, which eliminates some of the need for Mancz.

Look for Torrence to be the guy running out with the starters, barring some sort of unforeseen change. Torrence truly earned his spot in the lineup this preseason.

LB Dorian Williams

Williams didn’t play on Saturday against Chicago. He popped up with a calf injury last week and was held out of the finale in Chicago. It doesn’t seem to be anything serious for the third-round pick at this time. Linebacker Baylon Spector suffered a hamstring injury early in the second half. He did make the initial roster, but he is a candidate to be placed on in-season IR, according to Joe Buscaglia.

This continues to keep the door open for Williams to potentially find himself active on game days. Unless something has changed behind closed doors, Williams will open the season on the two-deep, likely backing up All-Pro linebacker Matt Milano. He has performed well throughout the preseason despite not getting an opportunity at MIKE linebacker.

WR Justin Shorter

It wasn’t a total lock that Shorter would make Buffalo’s 53-man roster, considering the play of street free-agent receiver Andy Isabella late in training camp. But the rookie fifth-round pick made a good impression in key moments. He performed very well in their Week 2 outing against the Pittsburgh Steelers, which may have locked the spot up. Shorter was injured sometime between the game against the Bears and in the days following the road win, and he’s now a candidate to join Spector on short-term IR with a hamstring injury of his own, per Buscaglia.

Shorter had one reception for 19 yards on Saturday, but he’ll now be a player experiencing a small hiccup in his development by landing on short-term IR.

IOL Nick Broeker

Broeker was among the 27 players waived on Tuesday afternoon. The Bills prefer re-signing their cut draft selections, and it’s safe to assume the team will have interest in bringing the seventh-round pick back to the practice squad. Keep an eye out for where Broeker ends up on Wednesday.

CB Alex Austin

Austin — like Broeker — was also cut on Tuesday. Austin never seemed to have a chance at the roster unless there was an injury in the secondary. That injury never came and, thus, Austin was released. He was also a seventh-round pick and seems bound for the practice squad unless he’s claimed on waivers.

Austin had a pass breakup later in the game to force a fourth down and made a few tackles on Saturday.