Buffalo Bills head to Detroit for first preseason game

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ORCHARD PARK, N.Y. (WHEC) — The Buffalo Bills have logged 12 training camp practices so far, and are officially hitting the road.

They traveled to Detroit Thursday, for their first preseason game Friday.

The Bills game against the Lions is their first of three before the start of the regular season and their first preseason game since 2019.

Some starters will get rest, like Josh Allen, while others will see some minutes.

With one less game than a typical preseason and roster cuts coming next week, here’s Sean McDermott’s approach to managing playing time.

"I think that’s always a challenge as a coach," McDermott said. "How do you make sure you have the right number of players, the right players inside that number come cut down time and yet also getting your guys who are gonna play ready for the opener? So it’s a balance. I can tell you that. We go back and forth."

It’ll be a chance to fringe players to show what they got, and rookies to get some reps.

This includes offensive lineman Spencer Brown, who was the Bills’ third-round pick out of Northern Iowa.

Brown has already been thrust into early opportunities with the Bills.

Dion Dawkins started camp on the reserve/COVID list and wasn’t activated until Thursday.

While Dawkins was out, Brown has taken most of his reps in practice, an unexpected opening for growth, especially ahead of the game against the Lions.

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"It’s sink or swim, and I don’t plan on drowning so it’s just, you know, with the older guys and learning from them because they’ve been playing together for a while, so just getting the rhythm with them and learning their calls and what they expect and just listening to coaches and taking my losses and taking my wins lightly is so important," Brown said.

"That’s what happens when, unfortunately, guys are out, it’s an opportunity for someone else to step in and show us what they can do and I think Spencer is off to a great start, he’s held his own to do better against good competition," McDermott said.