Harrison Phillips and Vosean Joseph
A potentially shortened preseason would also not be beneficial for players coming back from serious injuries, like Harrison Phillips and Vosean Joseph. These were two players who missed a majority, or all, of last year and enter this year with hopes of breaking into the starting lineup.
Harrison Phillips is expected to be a part of the defensive tackle rotation and could push Star Lotulelei for the starting job. Phillips, who was a third round pick by the Buffalo Bills in 2018, was having a strong start to last year and at that time was winning the snap battle with Lotulelei. However, a torn ACL against the Cincinnati Bengals in Week 3 ended his season.
Another player who is expected to compete for a starting job is Vosean Joseph, who was a fifth round pick by the Bills last year. However, a shoulder injury during preseason landed him on injured reserve and he didn’t get to play a snap last year. This year, Joseph could end up being the replacement for retired Lorenzo Alexander at outside linebacker.
For both of these players, it is going to be important for them to get some snaps before the regular season to knock off the rust and make sure they are fully recovered. It will be interesting to see how cutting into those preseason reps impact the start of their seasons and place on the depth chart.