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Chan on Merriman & Brad

Bills utilityman Brad Smith averaged 3.7 touches a game last season, counting snaps as quarterback, receiver and kickoff returner. His impact was less than imagined when the team signed him as a free agent in July.

Gailey on Smith’s role next season: “I see him as a three-headed monster. Wildcat. Receiver. Special teams. I see him being all three of those and when he walks out there on the field they’re not sure what’s going to happen.”

Meanwhile, Gailey was predictably conservative about predicting a return to Pro Bowl form for veteran edge rusher Shawne Merriman, who is recovering from Achilles tendon surgery.

“I don’t know,” Gailey said. “I mean, the setback was not good. Now how far does he have to go? I don’t even know how far back he is, and I don’t know how far he has to go. I don’t know where those two ends are. He got hurt again. So now we’re back to square one or below square one maybe.”

Gailey said Merriman will get the chance to prove he can come back. “Yeah. The key is for us to get him healthy. Let’s get him healthy and let’s see what he can do.”

If he can come back, Merriman will not play outside linebacker in the 4-3 scheme. “I’d rather him not. I think we’d rather him be a right defensive end rushing the passer all the time.”

Below is the audio of the Gailey interview.

---Mark Gaughan



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