Observations from the Buffalo Bills’ eighth organized team activity practice of the spring Tuesday:
Josh Allen’s accuracy on the move was on display during a voluntary non-contact practice inside the ADPRO Sports Training Center.
The Buffalo Bills’ quarterback completed back-to-back passes on the run after being flushed out of the pocket to highlight an eight-play scoring drive in 11-on-11 work.
The first completion was a downfield throw of about 25 yards to new receiver Jamison Crowder. On the next play, Allen was hurried outside the pocket to his right and fired a pass over the middle into a tight window to Isaiah McKenzie for about 20 yards.
A 14-yard touchdown pass to running back Devin Singletary capped the drive.
No. 2 quarterback Case Keenum hit receiver Tanner Gentry on three completions to get the offense into scoring position on the next 11-on-11 drive. But the defense came up with a stop on a third-and-goal play from the 8 when heavy pressure forced Keenum to throw the ball away out the back of the end zone.
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The best long ball connection was by Allen to Marquez Stevenson on the first play of 7-on-7 work. Stevenson got behind rookie cornerback Kaiir Elam. Two plays later, Elam had Crowder well covered to force an incompletion. Cornerback Taron Johnson was all over a deep pass for Crowder from Keenum for an incompletion in 11-on-11 work. Keenum’s best completion was a tight throw over the middle to Gentry vs. Gentry tight coverage from Christian Benford. … Place-kicker Tyler Bass was 5 for 5 on field-goal tries, making the last from 51 yards.
Most of the team was in attendance. Players not seen on the field were: offensive linemen Rodger Saffold and Ike Boettger, running back Taiwan Jones, receiver Stefon Diggs, defensive ends Von Miller and Shaq Lawson, safeties Jordan Poyer and Micah Hyde; and cornerbacks Tre’Davious White and Cam Lewis. White and Boettger are recovering from surgeries. Among those players seen not participating but working out on the side were: Dawson Knox, Tommy Sweeney, Spencer Brown, Khalil Shakir, Jake Kumerow and Isaiah Hodgins.
Defensive coordinator Leslie Frazier, speaking for the first time since the end of last season, gave a party-line answer on the final 13 seconds of regulation time in the playoff loss at Kansas City.
“You always want to be learning, that’s the key to progressing in our league, and growing,” Frazier said. “And this offseason, as a part of that, every offseason, myself, the coaches, the players, you’re trying to grow, you’re trying to learn, you’re looking back and looking forward. And there are definitely some things that we could have done differently in that situation. And if we are ever presented with it again, hopefully we’ll handle it better. I think we will. But you learn, that’s what you have to be able to do. … You have to be the flush it and move on. If you don’t, then it carries over to the next season.
“And, as you mentioned, I’ve been in some tough losses, even in other championship games and some big wins in championship games. … You’ve got to be locked in on what can help us to be the best in 2022, and you got to approach it that way. And I think our guys are doing that. You know, I think we’ve moved on from that.”
Frazier said he’s hopeful Poyer, who is seeking a contract extension, will be on the field for mandatory minicamp practices next week. Poyer has not attended the voluntary spring sessions.
“We’ve been texting back and forth, and just trying to keep them engaged in that way,” Frazier said of Poyer and Hyde. “We’ve had some good back and forth conversations. Of course, Micah was here a couple of weeks ago. So yeah, I think Jordan is in a good place mentally. He’s still staying in touch with his teammates and hopefully, we’ll see him soon.”
General Manager Brandon Beane was sympathetic to Allen’s struggles off the tee in “The Match” golf event in Las Vegas last week.
“I felt for him a little bit,” said Beane, a single-digit handicapper. “We’ve all been there. If you play golf, you get out there and it’s a hard time to fix what’s going on. And I would say Josh was probably like that baseball pitcher, when he’s not throwing strikes, you start aiming a little bit. He was trying to get that thing out there a little bit.”
Beane was appreciative of the fact Allen was back in Orchard Park practicing with the team the next day.
“What message of how important OTAs are then flying from Vegas back here to make sure he was on the field,” Beane said. “You know, he could have just taken the whole week off.”
Beane thinks retired Carolina linebacker Luke Kuechly could have a big career in a team management role if he wants it. Kuechly was in attendance at Bills practice last week.
“Luke is all ball all the time, unless he’s hunting,” Beane said. “I mean, he could do anything. Luke could be a head coach in this league. He could be a GM in this league. He could probably take my job pretty quick. I mean, I’ve never been around someone that absolutely wants to do nothing but be around ball.”