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Devin Singletary stars, Matt Barkley solid, defense is stout

Devin Singletary established himself as the immediate star of the Buffalo Bills' preseason Thursday night.

It's too early to say whether his impressive showing in the Bills' 24-16 victory against the Indianapolis Colts at New Era Field will translate into his earning a significant share of the regular-season workload in the team's crowded backfield.

But Singletary looked good in everything he did as a runner and a receiver, albeit against Colts reserve defensive players. He was fast, explosive and elusive in carrying nine times for 27 yards and catching three passes for 21 yards after replacing starter Frank Gore for the Bills' fourth series.

The third-round draft pick from Florida Atlantic seemingly has the makings of a strong case to be a situational offensive weapon.

[Jay Skurski's Observations: Bills guard Jon Feliciano takes his turn at center in preseason win]

Other observations:

• Josh Allen was so-so in his two-series appearance. He completed six of 11 passes for 66 yards and had a passer rating of 72.5. His best throw was a 23-yard completion to a wide-open Zay Jones. But he overthrew the receiver badly on one play and sent a ball intended for him on third down into the ground. On an over-the-middle throw near the Colts' goal line, Allen led Jones right into a hard hit that prompted the receiver to be taken to the locker room for evaluation for a head injury. Jones was cleared, but didn't return to the game.

Allen showed his signature prowess with his feet on an eight-yard run for another first down before giving way to Matt Barkley.

• Barkley had a solid outing, completing 9 of 14 passes for 126 yards and a touchdown with a passer rating of 117. He made good decisions with where to go with the ball and showed mostly good awareness when under pressure. Barkley was impressive on his eight-yard scoring toss to Cam Phillips in the back corner of the end zone. He also had the game's longest completion with a 38-yarder to Isaiah McKenzie.

• The Bills' defense was stout against a Colts offense that had backup Jacoby Brissett starting at quarterback in place of Andrew Luck. Linebacker Tremaine Edmunds was credited for four tackles and a tackle for a loss. He was aggressive and managed to consistently put himself in range of the ball.

• How much do the Bills need their top free-agent signing, center Mitch Morse, back the lineup as he remains in concussion protocol? Russell Bodine provided the answer in the second quarter with a snap well over Barkley's head that the Colts recovered.

• Senorise Perry also made some noise at running back with a gritty, 1-yard touchdown run in the second quarter on a drive that also saw him catch a 15-yard pass from Barkley.

• The night's biggest play came early in the fourth quarter when rookie running back Christian Wade, a former rugby player from England, ran 65 yards for a touchdown. He made a nice cut to avoid a would-be tackler and easily sped away from defenders. Wade has virtually no chance of making the roster, but he surely helped his chances of being noticed by another team.

• On the same night that Singletary, Perry and Wade were turning heads, T.J. Yeldon might have taken a big step out of the running back competition with the rookie, Gore and incumbent starter LeSean McCoy by losing a fumble deep in Colts territory late in the first half.

• It wasn't the best start to the preseason for Stephen Hauschka. On his only field-goal attempt, from 34 yards, he hit the left upright. He also barely made the extra point after the Bills' first touchdown. For the record, Chase McLaughlin connected on a 38-yard field goal late in the third quarter.

• Western New York native Chad Kelly, looking to salvage his NFL quarterbacking career with the Colts, did some solid work in mop-up duty after entering the game in the middle of the third quarter. He showed remarkable speed on a 33-yard touchdown run and also threw for 121 yards with his uncle, Bills Hall of Famer Jim Kelly, watching from the stands. Kelly visited with former teammate and Colts coach Frank Reich.

Bills rookie Devin Singletary shines in first NFL game

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