Buffalo Bills training camp started this week and there are a couple of players that aren’t playing right now. The players that aren’t participating include Jerry Hughes, Dion Dawkins, and Ike Boettger. With Hughes and Dawkins not playing, some of the younger guys are getting an opportunity to show what they’ve got on the first team.
Spencer Brown replacing Dawkins
Dawkins is on the Covid List, meaning he won’t be able to participate in practice for at least a couple of days. With him being out, the mentality for the team is next man up. The next man up is rookie Tackle, Spencer Brown. Brown has been taking first-team reps so far in camp and will continue to take them in Dawkins’s absence. What we should be looking for out of Brown are his pad level and his footwork. Brown is a big-bodied tackle measuring out at 6’8″ and weighing in at 311 pounds. He needs to figure out how to keep his pads low and maintain that low level so he can create movement on the line. During these first few days of camp, expect to see a lot of Spencer Brown and keep a close eye on what he can do.
Jerry Hughes injury
Jerry Hughes has a calf injury that is holding him out of camp. There is no real timetable for his return. This means we have the opportunity to see some more of the rookie talent that the Bills drafted: Rousseau and Basham. Expect to see them splitting reps at camp.
So far we have seen good things out of Basham. On Thursday, he tipped a pass that turned into a pick-six of Josh Allen. This is huge to see out of a rookie rusher. For Basham to have the ability and athleticism to bat down a pass and still manage to catch it and return it for six is a good sign for what’s to come. Also, from the camp drills that we have seen, he looks agile and has good use of his hands.
Rousseau hasn’t had as much tape coming out of camp yet but, from what has come out, he looks good. He showed good speed and good use of hands in the Defensive Line drills and also showed good change of direction ability. Expect to see more of this and for him to showcase his ability to play against the run. Hopefully, he and Basham can work together and continue to work on getting their hands up and batting passes down.
Training camp is one of the best times of the year. There is so much that comes out of training camp that it is impossible not to pay attention. Seeing what your team got out of the draft, tracking the position battles, and so much more!