The Bills get ready for their final pre-season game at Detroit on Thursday. Below are comments from Tuesday's post-practice interviews, beginning with head coach Chan Gailey:
On what he plans to do with the first team against the Lions on Thursday:
We are thinking in that 10 play area. I do not know if it might be a little bit more or if it might be a little bit less, but that is what we are thinking. If you are going to put them out there for four plays, why even put them out there? You want to be able to go out there and play enough to get a feel for the game. Hit a little bit because it will be a little while before they do it again.
On if C Eric Wood will play:
On how Wood has been coming along:
He is coming along pretty well. Eric (Wood) really has had no setbacks. Really that is what you worry about. You worry about setbacks and he has had no setbacks to this point.
On CB Terrence McGee's health:
Terrence (McGee) had a setback yesterday. His knee got a little weaker in practice yesterday so we are sitting him and seeing where he goes looking in the future. He is not going to play this week so we will see where that puts us.
On if QB Tarvaris Jackson will be playing Thursday night:
Yeah, we are going to get him in. We got him in for reps in practice today and we will get him in the game unless something funky happens with the clock and they eat up the last 10 minutes of the game. Something crazy like that but our plan is to get him in the game and let him play.
On if QB Tyler Thigpen will play most of the game against Detroit:
Yeah, it will be. Tyler (Thigpen) needs to play and he needs to show what he has got. This is his shot and we will play Tarvaris at the end.
On it being the last opportunity for guys to win a roster spot:
Yeah it is. There are quite a few guys that are sitting on that so-called bubble that we are trying to make a decision on this week. It will be vital for them to be able to go out, be able to play well and show that they can take it from the practice field to the game field.
On if most of the roster is already decided:
About 80, 85-percent of it is done. So you are talking about the last 15-percent of your football team. That is what we are talking about.
On what kind of curve Jackson can be graded on in such limited time:
What you have to look at when you are making a decision like this is potential. That is what you are looking at. Do we think he can learn it eventually? Do we think that he can play in this system eventually? That is the decision we will have to make because there are not enough reps and there are not going to be enough looks to make a clean decision. We are going to have to make that decision about which way to go.
On WR Marcus Easley's performance:
He has had some really good days and some average days. That is what we are looking at. How much of that average is because he has not played in two years or is the average because he is not playing up to what we expect and what we need? So that is where we are with him. He has done some really good things on the field. We are going to have to make a hard call depending upon what it looks like Thursday night.
On if he is worried about the long-term ramifications of McGee's setback:
Yeah, I mean you always are. Until a guy can go out there, play consistently and have no setbacks you get worried. I have a lot more confidence with where Eric Wood is than I do with Terrence McGee because Eric has had no setbacks whereas Terrence has had a couple of setbacks during the course of camp and preseason practice.
On RT Erik Pears' chances of playing in the season opener:
I think he will be available. That is all the information I have got is that he will be available in the opener. Now something could change but that is the information that I have got.
On if McGee's injury automatically places him on the bubble to make the roster:
I do not see that right now. No, I do not see that.
On if DE Mark Anderson will play against the Jets:
Yeah, we will have Mark (Anderson) in the first ball game. He wants to play Thursday night but we are trying to be precautious in that regard.
On how the special team spots on the roster will play out:
We are going to look at it and take into account the whole body of work that people have given during practice and in games. Sometimes you do not get enough shots in games. That is something we have to look at hard because those are important positions when you get right down to it.
On the job that RB Tashard Choice has done:
(Tashard Choice) is exactly what we thought he was. Tashard is a great all-around back. He can catch, he can block and he can run the football. He is great for your football team because of his attitude. There are a lot of positives about Tashard. We are going to have to make a decision about who that third back is. Johnny (White) has been a little bit banged up and not able to play as much. We may have to make a call there as well.
QB Ryan Fitzpatrick
Tuesday, August 28, 2012
On how much the starters will play against Detroit:
I do not know how much (the starters) are going to play or not play right now. But when you are out there you want to be competitive and you want to be efficient. That is what we will look forward to doing.
On if the goal is to just become more efficient:
Yeah, I think the goal in the last preseason game always, first thing, is to come out healthy. We have got the season coming up and we need everybody up, running and going. We are looking forward to being efficient and consistent.
On playing in the fourth preseason game where the first team rarely plays:
The fourth game is one that for me has been big in my career when I was young just in terms of getting out there, getting the time, being able to perform, show what you have learned and your handle of the offense or defense. This is for those guys that are kind of on the edge and the young guys to get out there and kind of showcase what they can do. As a guy who has been in that situation, and was in that situation a lot early in my career, I understand how important it is for them.
On if one preseason game sticks out from earlier in his career:
I do not know if there is a particular one. I have played in a lot of games so I do not remember.
On helping QB Tarvaris Jackson adjust to playing for the Bills:
I told him today that I was in the exact same situation he is in 2007. I got traded to the (Cincinnati) Bengals essentially after the last preseason game and was the number two when I got there. They only had two quarterbacks--Carson (Palmer) and me. I was in his exact situation, having to kind of scramble and figure out how to at least spit out the offense in the huddle and the snap count. There are so many different things that go into this and there are so many teams that do it differently than we do. My advice to him, and I told him, is just ask me anything you need to ask me. He has played in this league. A lot of it is just being confident. Picking a few plays that he is comfortable with and then going from there.
On if just picking out a few plays then expanding is the easiest way to adjust to a new offense:
Absolutely. It is a tough time to come in because we are not going to start with the basic formation install with him. We kind of start with the game plan that week so you end up doing a lot of memorization each week and he does not really have those fundamentals of the offense to fall back on. Like I said, I did it and it was not the easiest thing in the world. It seems like he is the kind of guy who is really going to work at it.
On what it would mean to have a few successful plays against Detroit:
Yeah, it would be great to go out there, put a string of plays together and be successful. That is what you want to do every time you step on the field. For us, that is what we are going to try to do.
On if he has already started working on the Jets game plan:
Yeah, we have been watching them in the film room. We did in the offseason as well, but kind of throughout preseason here keeping an eye on them and what they are doing with personnel and those types of things.
On knowing the Jets well:
We have played against them, their scheme and the same guys for a while now. It will be a great match-up; especially defensively they are really tough. It is a good one for us to open with and see where we are at.