Found August 31, 2012 on Queen City Sports:
The regular season is over and today the final cuts to being made to the Bills roster. Since there is so much going on, I’ll discuss the final preseason game, roster cuts known and some predicted, as well as a few things on the upcoming Jets game. 1. The Bills Starting Offense is Ready for the Jets: Could the Bills starting offense have ended the preseason on a higher note? Ryan Fitzpatrick was perfect, CJ Spiller ran the ball well, the offensive line played great in its series, and Stevie Johnson and Donald Jones both played well. Can’t ask for more from the starting offense. 2. Aaron Williams Scares Me: Okay, there is only one Calvin Johnson in the NFL and most corners struggle against him. That said, Williams was absolutely torched by Megatron. This ends a poor preseason and training camp for the Bills starting cornerback. Look for the Bills to possibly bring in a released player who could add depth and push Williams. One name that comes to mind is Alphonso Smith, formerly of the Lions. 3. Cutting Dwan Edwards was a Smart Move: It’s hard to justify paying a backup four million dollars. Edwards was brought in at a time when the Bills were transitioning to a 3-4 defense and currently had the eighth highest salary on the Bills this season. Truth be told, Edwards played respectfully for the Bills but releasing him was fiscally responsible. The four million dollars can go towards an extension for Andy Levitre or Jairus Byrd. 4. Late Round Draft Picks are No Longer Safe: Tank Carder, a fifth round pick, became the first Bills rookie to get cut today. His message on Twitter seemed to imply that he wasn’t even going to be placed on the Bills practice squad. Carder was impressive early in training camp, but never really stood out after his early play. Mark Asper, Zebrie Sanders, and John Potter are other draft picks who are also on the roster bubble. Regardless of who is cut, it doesn’t necessarily mean that the Bills missed with their pick. It speaks more to the volume of the depth that they’ve built in the last few seasons. 5. There May Be A Few Surprise Cuts: While not likely, I wouldn’t be shocked to see Brad Smith go. The Bills say he’ll have a big role in the offense so he’s probably safe, but this preseason he still looked lost on the Bills. Throw in the fact that Smith looked slow on kick returns and it is hard to justify paying someone four million dollars to run the Wildcat. Justin Rogers also played poorly at corner so he may not be safe. However, he brings a lot of talent to the return game. 6. Marcus Easley Gave Himself a Chance: It’s still a longshot that Easley makes the team, but he played well against the Lions. Easley brought in a 20 yard reception, returned a kickoff 100 yards for a touchdown, and converted a two point play. It was a nice final audition for a guy who has suffered many bad breaks in his three seasons in the NFL. If the Bills cut him, look for him to be invited to the practice squad if he isn’t picked up elsewhere. 7. The Bills Need to Look Over the Waiver Wire: The Bills would be smart to look for upgrades in a few positions, namely wide receiver, linebacker, and cornerback. One name that stuck out to me today was Deion Branch. He is far from explosive, but he’d fit the Bills and their eight to ten yard routes. He’s also a smart player who could bring forth a lot of knowledge on division rival, New England. There are going to be one or two players who make the 53 man roster only to be cut when the Bills bring in a free agent. It’s heartbreaking, but it’s a part of the game. 8. Leodis McKelvin is Finally Putting it All Together: It took a few years, but slot corner is where McKelvin truly belongs. McKelvin is an athlete through and through and by playing in a slot his job is to keep the wide receiver in front of him. This is something McKelvin has thrilled at this preseason. He also looked good returning punts and he ended his preseason by blocking a Jason Hanson field goal. McKelvin is in a contract year, but if he gives the Bills a hometown discount, he may be worth keeping around a few more seasons. 9. To Beat the Jets, the Bills Need to Run for Over 150 Yards: …and I think they will! Fred Jackson and C.J. Spiller both looked great this preseason running the ball, and Tashard Choice has drastically improved from last season. The Jets run defense is legitimate, but the Bills offensive line proved that they can open holes for the Bills running backs. This season, the Bills should depend on the run to win games with their improved defense. A focus on running the ball will also open things up for Ryan Fitzpatrick. 10. The Bills Will Sack Mark Sanchez and Tim Tebow a Minimum of Four Times: I’m calling two sacks for Mario Williams, one for Kyle Williams, and while I don’t know who will record the Bills fourth sack, I see them creating a lot of problems for the Jets quarterback duo. Due to the pressure the Bills will leave the Meadowlands with a 17-10 victory in Week 1. Bills fans, what do you “Bill-ieve” heading into the regular season? Follow @BonasBillsFan
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