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Day Eight: Drops mar red-zone work

By Mark Gaughan

PITTSFORD -- Bills coach Chan Gailey was upset with the number of dropped passes in Friday's training camp practice.

"That’s unacceptable," Gailey said. "We can't have that. We drop the ball that much we won't win any games."

T.J. Graham dropped a fine would-be touchdown pass from Ryan Fitzpatrick in the end zone on a post pattern. Fred Jackson had a drop on a slant pass. David Clowney had a drop. There were numerous others.

However, the starting offense did look pretty good late in the red-zone session. On his second-last series, Fitzpatrick started with an on-time dart to Donald Jones for a TD. He followed up with a well-executed screen pass to Jackson. Next came a quick out to Ruvell Martin, followed by another rhythm throw to Jackson for a TD. In his last series, a situational drive that started with 40 seconds left from the 30-yard line, he hit tight end Scott Chandler, then Martin, then Chandler again and spiked the ball at the 5-yard line with five seconds left. Then he hit Jackson over the middle for a TD.

Center Eric Wood took a dozen or so snaps. Linebacker Kelvin Sheppard returned after missing most of two days. Sitting out were Bryan Scott, Josh Nesbitt, Chris Kelsay, Kellen Heard and Justin Rogers. Torell Troup worked about the first 45 minutes. Stevie Johnson had a tight hamstring (not the one that received offseason surgery) and mostly watched.

RIght tackle Erik Pears still was out while recovering from a groin or hernia injury. Asked if it was a major concern, Gailey said: "I’m not ready to put the word major on it, but it's a concern."

Notre Damer Sam Young has been taking Pears spot much of the time with the starters. On Friday, the Bills worked Chris Hairston a bunch more at right tackle, with Cordy Glenn getting his turn at left tackle.

Vince Young had a pretty good day. His strikes in team drills included a 20-yard TD to Clowney in the corner of the end zone, a TD on a slant to Marcus Easley, and he had a good TD to Dorin Dickerson in seven-on-seven work. ... Naaman Roosevelt had a lot of catches. ... Defensive end Kyle Moore, the Southern Cal product signed late last season, has been doing well versus second- and third-teamers. He got some first- and second-team snaps. He blew up a running play late in red-zone work. ... Dwan Edwards continues to do pretty well in one-on-one pass rush drills. ... Marcell Dareus is a handful with whomever he teams with in two-on-two pass-rush drills. Alex Carrington bested Keith Williams twice. ... Guard Michael Jasper and defensive end Robert Eddins each threw a punch at each other after a play late in the practice.

Meanwhile, the visit of free-agent safety Jim Leonhard came and went. The Bills checked him out and gave him a physical. He did not meet with Gailey. Leonhard was scheduled to visit the Denver Broncos next.

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About Press Coverage

Tim Graham

Tim Graham

Tim Graham returned to The Buffalo News in 2011 after covering the NFL for three years at ESPN and for one year at the Palm Beach Post. Before that, the Cleveland native spent seven seasons on the Buffalo Sabres beat for The News and was president of the Boxing Writers Association of America.

@ByTimGraham |

Mark Gaughan

Mark Gaughan

Buffalo native Mark Gaughan started working at The News in 1980 and has been covering the Bills exclusively since 1992. He is a former president of the Pro Football Writers of America, and he is a member of the Pro Football Hall of Fame selection committee.

@gggaughan |

Jay Skurski

Jay Skurski

Jay Skurski joined The News in January 2009. The Lewiston native attended St. Francis High School before graduating from the University of South Florida. He writes a weekly Fantasy column in addition to his beat writing duties.

@JaySkurski |