PITTSFORD, N.Y. (WIVB) — The Bills break training camp Thursday after a little more than two weeks at St. John Fisher University. Here are four observations from the penultimate 10th camp practice.
Murray seizes opportunity at RB
Damien Harris missed practice because of knee soreness, opening a hole for Latavius Murray. The NFL’s oldest running back at 33 looked spry, turning two short passes into long gains during team drills. Nyheim Hines’ injury has created room on the roster for Murray, who is competing with Harris to compliment back behind James Cook. Last year’s second-round pick who has been a fixture on the first-team through training camp. Murray rushed for 702 yards and five touchdowns in 12 games last season with the Broncos, after he was signed off the Saints’ practice squad. The Syracuse-area native will be Buffalo’s biggest back at 6-foot-3, 230 pounds, and Wednesday showed Murray’s NFL career still has legs.
Collision doesn’t deter Diggs
Right after Stefon Diggs beat Tre’Davious White for a contested catch along the sideline, Bills fans gasped when the star receiver was shaken up in a collision with Siran Neal. Both players laid on the turf in the end zone for a moment. Diggs eventually got up laughing and walked off the field without his helmet. He sat out a few plays, then returned. Neal, a special teams ace who has received a lot of reps as a nickel defender during training camp, made a leaping interception not long after.
Depth chart for preseason opener
The Bills released their first depth chart of the summer Tuesday. It didn’t provide much insight into the training camp position battles: Terrel Bernard and Tyrel Dodson at inside linebacker, Christian Benford, Kaiir Elam and Dane Jackson at outside cornerback, and Deonte Harty and Khalil Shakir at slot receiver. Those players were listed in alphabetical order together on the first team. Incumbent starter Ryan Bates is listed ahead of rookie O’Cyrus Torrence at right guard, but offensive coordinator Ken Dorsey on Wednesday called it a “great competition” that is “really close between those two guys.”
In addition to Harris, defensive tackle Ed Oliver missed his second practice with back soreness. Defensive back Cam Lewis remained out with a groin injury. Left tackle Dion Dawkins was a full participant after he banged his hand Monday and left the practice field early. Safety Jordan Poyer was rested. Defensive tackle Jordan Phillips has yet to practice in pads after being activated from the physically unable to perform list Sunday.
Jonah Bronstein joined the WIVB squad in 2022 as a digital sports reporter. The Buffalonian has covered the Bills, Sabres, Bandits, Bisons, colleges, high schools and other notable sporting events in Western New York since 2005, for publications including The Associated Press, The Buffalo News, and Niagara Gazette. Read more of his work here.