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Vince Young pulling away from Tyler Thigpen

YoungMinAPBy Tim Graham

MINNEAPOLIS -- As most of us expected, Vince Young is showing he's a better quarterback than Tyler Thigpen.

Young distanced himself from Thigpen some more Friday night in the battle for the Buffalo Bills' backup job. Bills coach Chan Gailey said "You'd have to say Vince came out a little bit ahead tonight."

Gailey has praised Young after each of the Bills' two preseason games. Gailey remarked on Young's mobility after last week's loss to the Washington Redskins and liked Young's arm Friday night against the Minnesota Vikings.

"Vince did a god job," Gailey said. "He hit the big pass, made a check out there and got us in a good spot to get the touchdown."

Young completed eight of his 14 throws for 123 yards. More than half of his yardage came on a majestic, arcing pass to T.J. Graham on the first play after halftime. The Bills scored a touchdown on the drive.

That said, Gailey wasn't down on Thigpen's performance. Thigpen completed eight of 15 passes for 56 yards. He threw several short routes, and his receivers could have helped him out with better hands.

But Thigpen did make one awful throw that turned into a touchdown by Vikings linebacker Audie Cole. Thigpen had a bad interception in the first preseason game, too.

"Tyler had done good, too, until he threw the interception," Gailey said. "The last two throws he had were not good, but up until then he played pretty well."

Third quarterback Brad Smith had a rough night, but he's likely safe because he operates the Wildcat package.

For the record, Smith completed one of his five passes for 12 yards and threw an interception, which Cole also returned for a touchdown -- one play after he took Thigpen's interception all the way back. Smith also ran once for 14 yards.

(Photo: Genevieve Ross/Associated Press)

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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 |