PITTSFORD, N.Y. (WIVB) — The Bills begin the preseason Saturday at home, but fans won’t have the chance to see at least two of the team’s star players in uniform. Quarterback Josh Allen and wide receiver Stefon Diggs have been ruled out, coach Sean McDermott said Thursday, and the Bills have not yet determined if safety Damar Hamlin will play.

The rest of Buffalo’s starters will play for about a quarter, McDermott said before the Bills held their final training camp practice at St. John Fisher University. “Maybe one or two other guys will not,” he added.

Allen is expected to play at some point in the preseason, McDermott said. The Bills’ second preseason game is Aug. 19 at Pittsburgh. Allen played one series last preseason, leading the Bills on a touchdown drive at the start of the second exhibition. Diggs also appeared only in the second preseason game in 2022.

Hamlin has been a full participant in training camp practices and is on schedule to play in the preseason, McDermott said. If he is active on Saturday at Highmark Stadium, it will be Hamlin’s first game since he went into cardiac arrest and collapsed on the field during a January game in Cincinnati.

“I feel like we’re heading in a good spot heading in a good direction on it,” McDermott said. “We’ll continue to take it one day at a time. Similar to the other players that I mentioned with injuries, all that affects play time and affects planning. So we try and stay as up to date as possible as we can on that in the communication piece with our trainers and in this case with Damar. So I’ve been very impressed by the way he’s handled himself to this point. But we remain working on at his cadence.”

Defensive tackle Ed Oliver returned to practice Thursday after missing two days with back soreness. Defensive back Cam Lewis (groin), running back Damien Harris (knee), and fullback Reggie Gilliam (groin) remain out. Star pass rusher Von Miller (knee) and special teamer Tyler Matakevich (calf) remain on the physically unable to perform list. Defensive tackle Jordan Phillips (shoulder) has not yet practiced in pads since being activated from the PUP list earlier this week.

The Indianapolis Colts will start rookie quarterback Anthony Richardson in Saturday’s preseason opener at Buffalo, coach Shane Steichen announced Thursday.

Richardson, the fourth overall pick in April’s draft, has been working primarily with the starters over the past week and has shown glimpses of the raw talent that intrigued the team.

Because Richardson only started one college season at Florida, it was unclear how quickly the Colts would push the 21-year-old into action.

Richardson has been battling veteran Gardner Minshew for the No. 1 spot on the depth chart, but Steichen already knows what Minshew can do since both worked together in Philadelphia each of the past two seasons. Steichen said he wants to see what Richardson can do with the Colts’ starters on game day.


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.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.