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Owens sees some room for his own improvement

Bills receiver Terrell Owens is aiming for a better performance this week against New Orleans.

Owens caught his first touchdown pass for the Bills against Tampa Bay in Week Two, but he also dropped a long pass. He said via Twitter after the game "it might not have been my best performance" and was asked about that comment Wednesday.

"I just feel like I let some opportunities slip," Owens said. "And obviously with the deep ball, I kind of relaxed and the shield was kind of dirty from the couple plays before, so you know, again, I have high standards for myself, and obviously I'm pleased with the win and that we won. We came back and sealed the win, but like I said, I have high standards for myself and it wasn't my best game."

Owens removed the shield above his face mask for the second half.

Asked if he was happy with the number of times he was targeted with passes against Tampa Bay, Owens said: "I think that obviously, this team is different than years past. It's something that I have to get adjusted to. I just have to make the best of my opportunities."

Owens caught three passes in the game, one a 43-yard touchdown. He was targeted on two incompletions, one a long bomb that he dropped. He also rushed for 13 yards on a reverse.

Owens said he's encouraged by the Bills' 438-yard offensive showing and deep-ball success against Tampa.

"Oh yeah, definitely. I think when we're capable of making plays, obviously that takes a lot of pressure off Trent [Edwards] to feel like he has to make a play. I think we have more than enough capable guys on the offensive side of the ball to make something happen. Think about what Lee Evans and myself bring on the outside and think about what Fred Jackson has been doing the last couple games. This offense has a lot of potential. Those guys up front are working hard, they're young and I think everybody is growing with each game."

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Rookie Jamon Meredith, acquired off the Green Bay practice squad Tuesday, worked out with the Bills on Wednesday.

Meredith essentially is an extra draft choice for the Bills. He was a fifth-round pick of the Packers this year. Now the Bills have eight rookies from the 2009 draft class on their roster. (It's nine counting undrafted Ashlee Palmer, who made the 53-man squad.)

However, they eschewed the chance to add a veteran to their young offensive line unit. Jon Runyan, a 13-year veteran coming off microfracture knee surgery, was among the experienced linemen available.

Why not bring in a tackle with more experience? Coach Dick Jauron pointed to the presence of four-year veteran Kirk Chambers, who now presumably is the Bills' No. 3 tackle.

"At this point we still have the luxury of Kirk, who's got experience in the league and who's played well for us," Jauron said.

"Sean [Kugler] and Ray [Brown] really liked Meredith in his workout, thought he had some upside," Jauron said, referring to the Bills' offensive line coaches. "We had good grades on him coming out. So we decided we would go that way."

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Bills center Geoff Hangartner (back) and receiver Josh Reed (thigh) sat out Wednesday's practice.

Saints starting running back Mike Bell (knee) did not practice and was described as day to day by coach Sean Payton. If he can't play, Pierre Thomas would take his place. Saints left tackle Jamaal Brown (hip) has yet to play this season. Jermon Bushrod will make his third career start in Brown's place. Starting defensive tackle Kendrick Clancy (knee) also sat out.

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The Bills added a player to the practice squad and cut one -- linebacker Alvin Bowen. Signed was offensive tackle Andre Ramsey, a 6-5, 322-pound Ball State product who joins the Bills after being released by the Seahawks prior to the start of this season. Ramsey originally entered the NFL as an undrafted rookie free agent.

The other members of the practice squad: RB Bruce Hall, CB Cary Harris, WR C.J. Hawthorne, OT Nick Hennessey, WR Felton Huggins, DT Corey Mace and LB Marcus Freeman.

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Bills kicker Rian Lindell was named AFC Special Teams Player of the Week for his game against the Bucs. Lindell had 15 points, including field goals from 31, 43, 27 and 20 yards. He also had two touchbacks on kickoffs and three others into the end zone.

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No-longer-used cell phones will be collected at the stadium gates before Sunday's game as part of the Verizon Wireless HopeLine program to benefit victims of domestic violence. It's the ninth year of the drive at a Bills game. Fans donated more than 750 phones last year and have given more than 6,000 over the past eight years. Linebacker Kawika Mitchell is the spokesman for the HopeLine program.

e-mail: mgaughan@buffnews.com

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