Here are the three things I'm looking for in tonight's preseason-finale between the Bills and Lions at 7:30 p.m. at Detroit's Ford Field:
1. Matt Simms closing the deal on No. 3 spot. Rex Ryan loves the guy. So does quarterbacks coach David Lee. They saw him as a reliable backup when he was with them on the Jets. They have liked what he has shown in limited practice repetitions and appearances in the preseason. Tonight, Simms is scheduled to be the only Bills quarterback to play an entire preseason game. He can do plenty to help himself either land a job elsewhere or convince the Bills to put him on the practice squad -- after his likely release in the cut to the final 53-man roster -- as the third quarterback behind starter Tyrod Taylor and the winner of the battle for the No. 2 spot (EJ Manuel or Matt Cassel).
2. Dan Carpenter redeems himself. He must snap out of the preseason slump that has seen him miss two field-goal attempts and an extra-point try from the new longer distance of 33 yards. And fast. Ryan has effectively put Carpenter on notice that he needs have whatever is wrong with his performance fixed by tonight. He clearly seems to be feeling the pressure, although he can't allow it to get the better of him. I wonder if the guy who flashed a laser-pointer in his face when he kicked what proved to be the winning 58-yard field goal at Detroit last season is going to sneak his way into Ford Field, from which he is supposed to be banned?
3. Who will those four or five bottom-of-the-roster guys be? Ryan estimates that about four or five players from tonight's game will make the final roster as reserves. The Bills have depth concerns at cornerback, linebacker, and wide receiver. Tonight will belong to players such as cornerbacks Mario Butler and Ron Brooks -- whose job security could be helped by the fact Leodis McKelvin missed most of training camp and the entire preseason with an ankle issue -- and wide receivers Andre Davis, Dez Lewis, and Tobais Palmer.
Records: Bills (2-1), Lions (2-1)
Radio: 550 AM