Insta-Graham: Jonathan Williams shines in Bills' preseason opener - The Buffalo News
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Insta-Graham: Jonathan Williams shines in Bills' preseason opener

Tyrod Taylor played well.

So, too, did Sammy Watkins.

As nice as that was to see over the three series the Buffalo Bills' starters played Thursday night, preseason games tell us more about the backups. We begin to learn how the coaches truly view their depth chart. We get a glimpse of who can be counted on if there's an injury.

In that case, the two Bills who stood out against the Minnesota Vikings at New Era Field were running back Jonathan Williams and defensive end Eddie Yarbrough.

Williams looked slick in place of LeSean McCoy, who dressed but didn't play. Williams ran four times for 39 yards, including a 17-yard carry, and caught a pass for 7 yards.

Any angst over losing Mike Gillislee to the New England Patriots has subsided some.

Yarbrough, starting instead of Shaq Lawson, beat starting right tackle Mike Remmers to sack Sam Bradford on the first series.

The two Bills who failed to impress were quarterback T.J. Yates and tackle Seantrel Henderson.

Yates completed six of his 11 passes. He connected with receiver Philly Brown three times for 23 yards and with tight end Nick O'Leary on a 16-yard play. The rest was shaky. The Vikings sacked him twice.

Henderson gave up two sacks, the first putting a scare into the Bills when Everson Griffen bull-rushed him and dropped Taylor for an 11-yard loss. Taylor came up gimpy and received attention from the medical staff on the sideline before returning on the next possession.

Henderson started for injured left tackle Cordy Glenn and also played on the right side in the first half. The NFL suspended Henderson the first five games of the regular season for multiple marijuana violations.

So the Bills might as well play Henderson extra hard in the preseason. He'll have time to heal, but will the quarterbacks who get hurt if he can't block?

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