Bills QB Taylor cleared of concussion, to start against Jets
By MARK LUDWICZAK, Associated Press
ORCHARD PARK, N.Y. (AP) — The Buffalo Bills will have their starting quarterback for Sunday’s season opener against the New York Jets.
Tyrod Taylor was cleared from concussion protocol and coach Sean McDermott said that Taylor will start for Buffalo in Week 1. McDermott made the announcement before the team returned to practice on Wednesday following a day off.
Taylor passed his final concussion-related test after returning to practice on Monday. He has been out since being injured during the second series of Buffalo’s 13-9 preseason loss at Baltimore on Aug. 26.
“I’m back,” Taylor said. “Offensively we had a great practice. I feel good. Back in game week. My focus is on whatever we’ve got to do to go out and play at a high level and take care of business Sunday, but I’m glad to be back on the field.”
Taylor appeared to be his usual self during the portion of practice open to reporters, connecting on touch passes to LeSean McCoy and Charles Clay to begin the session.
With Taylor’s status previously uncertain, the Bills faced the possibility of starting rookie Nathan Peterman. Buffalo also shuffled its quarterbacks this week by signing free agent Joe Webb and placing T.J. Yates on injured reserve. Yates also sustained a concussion against Baltimore.
Peterman, a fifth-round pick out of Pittsburgh, is coming off a promising preseason. But McDermott has made it clear that this is Taylor’s team and that the 28-year-old is Buffalo’s unquestioned starting quarterback.
“It’s good. He’s our leader,” McCoy said. “He makes a lot of plays with his arm and his feet and you bring that kind of dimension to our offense, you’ve got to stop us in multiple ways. He’s a big threat. Happy to have him back healthy and ready to go.”
Taylor was also selected as a team captain on Wednesday, along with defensive tackle Kyle Williams, linebacker Lorenzo Alexander, center Eric Wood and kicker Stephen Hauschka.
“It’s something that I’m proud of,” Taylor said. “It means a lot to me for sure.”
Taylor’s return wasn’t the only positive news on the injury front for the Bills.
Left tackle Cordy Glenn (foot) and wide receiver Jordan Matthews (chest) are on track to play against the Jets, McDermott said. Glenn has been troubled by a lingering foot injury while Matthews was injured in his first practice after being traded to the Bills last month. The Bills are counting on Matthews to help fill the void at receiver after Sammy Watkins was traded to the Los Angeles Rams.
Getting on the same page will be a priority for Taylor and Matthews over the next few days. They have not had much time together on the practice field because of their injuries.
“We’ve been grinding away at it,” Taylor said. “At the end of the day, we have to go out there and play ball as a team. Me and him will be on the same page, we’ll see the same things the same way and we’ll let our athletic ability just take over.”
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