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Pre Draft Luncheon: Today is the day that the Bills Brass speaks to the media and admittedly don't tell them the truth as they don't want to tip their hand at what they want to do during the draft. Doug Whaley said the team is in position to take the best player available. He said drafting a quarterback is a definite possiblity and they look at accuracy, decision making and play making ability when evaluating quarterbacks and admitted they obviously don't have a franchise quarterback. He said his philosophy is to build up every other area until they have one. The GM said they are more likely to trade down from the 50th spot but will not rule up moving up although he admitted that will be hard since they lack the ammunition to do so. The team would like to add depth along the defensive line, cornerback, and safety. Whaley said there is a chance they will use four tight ends on gameday making drafting one a possibility. The GM said talking to Richie Incognito for a few minutes and you know he has changed. Bills' Dir. of College Scouting Kelvin Fisher says he looks at 2nd and 3rd round picks as starters in year one and he also thinks that Cyrus Kouandjio is a potential starter in the NFL. Scout Jim Monos said that the talent this year at guard and offensive tackle is good.
Ryan Presser: Rex Ryan spoke to the press for the second time during the offseason conditioning program and began his 20 minute press conference pointing out that he reached home plate in his opening day first pitch at the Bisons game while Tom Brady bounced his first pitch at Fenway Park. Ryan confirmed that Sammy Watkins will not be back practicing until training camp after undergoing offseason hip surgery but he should be ready to go then. He re-iterated he much rather have Sammy than the first round draft pick. Ryan stood by comments he made in reaction to Jace Amaro's comments saying the team didn't really play hard last year. He said Amaro is the least of his concerns. The coach doesn't think there are too many glaring holes on the football team and they are operating from a position of strength. They will not tip toe into other people's stadiums they will do more than just compete with other teams. On Marcell Dareus he joked that he is just an average player since they are trying to sign him to an extension. Rex Ryan confirmed that the Eagles were asking for draft picks for LeSean McCoy at first but Doug Whaley asked them to look at their roster and that is when Kiko Alonso's name surfaced. The play of Nigel Bradham and Preston Brown last year made them comfortable with making that move.
Players Speak: The Bills had several players go to the podium and meet the media yesterday. Mario Williams said he's not worried about a contract restructuring or extension and he's excited to play in Rex Ryan's defense. He feels it won't change too much from the system they ran under Mike Pettine two years ago. Jerry Hughes said differently saying it is an entirely new scheme to learn. Both players are expected to stay at defensive end but may drop into coverage more in the base 3-4 defense. Fred Jackson hit the podium and said he was moved by the fans reaction to the possibility of him being cut in the offseason. He said he is in Buffalo until they force him to leave. He knows they want LeSean McCoy to be the bell cow but he won't make it easy for him to get the starting job. Sammy Watkins said EJ Manuel is his guy and you can see the difference in him this offseason.
Brad Smith Visits: The Bills are hosting a free agent visit today to someone very familiar with Rex Ryan and the Bills facility. Former Bill and Jet jack of all trades Brad Smith is at One Bills Drive. The team's website says they are strictly looking at him as a receiver and special teams contributor. However he has a history in the wildcat offense if the coaching staff looks to bring it back. He appeared in 13 games last year with the Eagles mainly on special teams.
All QBs To Get A Chance: The Bills made their offensive and defensive coordinators available to the media on Monday. Offensive coordinator Greg Roman confirmed that all four quarterbacks will get reps with the first team. He also stated that it is a clean slate for EJ Manuel. Roman seems excited about the addition of Percy Harvin because there is no limit on what he can do. The offensive philosphy is to figure out what the players do well and focus on that. He feels Cordy Glenn can play both inside and outside calling it a rare thing for a player be effective playing in space and in a phone booth. Defensive coordinator Dennis Thurman said they will find the best fit for Corey Graham whether it is at safety or cornerback. He said Kyle Williams is one of the bell cows they will lean on. Thurman confirmed they will play both 3-4 and 4-3 schemes.
Preseason Schedule Announced: The Bills preseason schedule is now set with dates and times to be announced shortly. The one game that is set is an 8pm start in Cleveland on ESPN on Thursday August 20th. That game takes place in the 2nd week of the preseason. The Bills open up the preseason at home against Carolina and they will also host Pittsburgh week 3 before closing out the preseason like they always do against Detroit this time they meet in the Motor City on September 3rd or 4th.
Bills Host Landry: The Bills hosted a free agent today at One Bills Drive as veteran safety Dawan Landry was in for a visit. The 32 year old perennial starter has plenty of experience in the Rex Ryan defensive scheme. He played for him the last two seasons with the Jets and was with the Ravens for five years and Ryan was the defensive coordinator for the first three of them. He also spent two years in Jacksonville.
Dareus Gets Plea Deal:Marcell Dareus agreed to a plea deal to end the drag racing case against him. He agreed to be ticketed with two traffic violations for failure to keep right and imprudent speed. He will also hold a free football camp for Erie County high school football players, the misdemeanor charges against him will be dropped in the deal. He was facing several charges for crashing his Jaguar into a tree on a busy road back in May. He was allegedly racing Jerry Hughes at the time of the crash.
Ryan Ready To Win: Rex Ryan addressed the media yesterday after the first day of the offseason conditioning program. He said he's real excited about getting back to football saying it's a special time to teach and mold players while giving them your vision. He said he expects to win and expects to win and right now. They need to use phase 1 of the program to start the process of getting everyone on the field. The organization is ready for anything and they made it happen when Percy Harvin became available and they know he will be big help to the football team.