By BBD Camp Reporter: Chris Hooker
The Buffalo Bills opened their training camp today to a packed house at St. John Fisher College.
Mario Williams walked on the field to a standing ovation at the start practice. He was the all the fans could talk about throughout the stands. While we didn’t get much of a chance to see Mario as we probably would have liked, he still brought it in his limited time in front of the fans on the main field.
Camp opened up with the offense and defense splitting up on two different fields, with the offense on the practice field and the defense on a side field that was a little more secluded from the crowd. I stayed to the left of the practice field and watched the QB-WR drills. At first glance, Ryan Fitzpatrick and Stevie Johnson continued their chemistry that they had throughout last season. Johnson looked sharp, his routes were tight and quick off the snap and didn’t appear to have any issues with his groin (although I did see him working with the trainers on the sidelines doing some stretches).
However, and please take this with a grain of salt because it is the first day of practice, I thought Vince Young out-practiced Fitzpatrick today, or maybe he just came into the afternoon with more to prove. Either way, his throws were tight and accurate, he led his receivers well and he just looked confident. We’ll see how this play develops, but right now, he has to be the favorite to be the number two guy.
After individual drills, the offense and linebackers moved into 7-on-7. First team on offense here consisted of Ryan Fitzpatrick, Fred Jackson, Stevie Johnson, David Nelson, Donald Jones, Derek Hagan and Scott Chandler.
Young threw two interceptions during 7-on-7’s, to CB Ron Brooks and LB Tank Carder respectively. The Carder pick was pretty ridiculous, as he came out of nowhere and would have definitely had a pick-6 in a game setting.
11-on-11 came next and that was where the fun really started. First impression, the D-line is absolutely crazy. Fitzpatrick barely had any time to get the ball off. The front four consisted of Mark Anderson, Kyle Williams, Marcel Dareus, and Williams. The front four were getting to the quarterback immediately and were putting pressure on him right from the snap.
Stevie Johnson had a huge catch during 11-on-11’s, burning Stephon Gilmore for a sure touchdown, but I looked at it more as Fitz and Johnson were picking on the rookie. Still, great play for Johnso.
I’m especially interested in the Chris Hairston/Cordy Glenn LT battle. Glenn is absolutely enormous and I can’t see anyway he doesn’t have have a real shot at the job. Glenn was taking reps at LG today, too.
Camper of the day: Going with Stevie Johnson. Coming off a groin injury, I think he needed to make a little bit of a splash to show he hadn’t lost anything over the summer. He certainly hasn’t and he definitely looks like he had a productive offseason.
Tune in for another report tomorrow and don’t forget to give me a follow on Twitter @chrishooker9