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Terrence McGee rediscovering speed of NFL

By Tim Graham

The Pittsburgh Steelers didn't greet Buffalo Bills cornerback Terrence McGee too warmly in his return to the field Saturday night.

"Yeah, they welcomed me back," McGee said. "It was a good route and a good throw."

On the first play of the second half -- and McGee's first play since tearing his patellar tendon in November -- backup quarterback Byron Leftwich fired a pass over McGee's head to Antonio Brown in the end zone for a 39-yard touchdown.

After I had a chance to review the game on television, it appeared the Bills were in a Cover 4 defense on Brown's long touchdown and safety Da'Norris Searcy got caught out of position, putting McGee in a tough spot.

But McGee didn't make any excuses.

"I wish I could take that play back," McGee said. "Anything else after that, I feel fine. The first play definitely woke me up."

McGee will need to remain healthy to make the roster. The Bills want him around. He's a veteran presence among a young group of cornerbacks and would be an asset in the slot.

McGee estimated he was on the field for about 20 plays. He also ventured he was about 90 percent back in his recovery.

"As far as my knee, my first couple series I had, my knee felt fine," McGee said. "Toward the end it started to ache up a bit, so they iced me down. But I feel all right besides that first play."

McGee had some positive moments Saturday night. He had four tackles. One of them was on a 22-yard Brown gain.

But then McGee stopped receiver David Gilbreath for a 1-yard gain on an end-around and then tackled running back Chris Rainey for a 2-yard loss and was credited for a tackle when Leftwich recovered a fumble for a 4-yard loss.

"I have to get out there and play and see where I'm at," McGee said. "You can only judge so far at practice. You've got to go out there and tackle guys, go up against the speed receivers like the Steelers have. It's the league. You have to get back to that level."

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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 |