Buffalo Bills cornerback Justin Rogers will be getting some snaps at nickel corner again as he works his way back from a hamstring injury that kept him out of the first three weeks of training camp. Former first-rounder Leodis McKelvin won the job, but a large part of that was due to Rogers’s injury.
Last season, Rogers was the team’s nickel corner towards the end of the year and made a big impact as a seventh-round pick out of Richmond. McKelvin is also a former standout at a small school in college, but he wasn’t a standout in the Bills meltdown against the New York Jets last week. In fact, he was terrible. The Pro Football Focus tweeted out that nobody gave up more yards per play in the slot than McKelvin (4.75) on Sunday.
The Bills are wise to rotate Rogers in there and allow him to get some reps, and it looks like Chan Gailey has re-opened the competition at nickel corner; a competition that will be played out in a regular season game against the Kansas City Chiefs. Both Rogers and McKelvin will have their hands full against Dexter McCluster, so it will certainly be an interesting competition to watch.
McKelvin has largely been a huge disappointment so far in his career with the Bills, and a lot rests on how well McKelvin plays this year. It’s a contract year for the 27-year-old corner, and he needs to have a good game against McCluster to prove that he has a spot in this league going forward. He’s tried to reinvent himself as a slot corner, so the competition against second-year corner Justin Rogers in the nickel is one that McKelvin has to win. If he doesn’t, he’s going to have to hope that somebody takes a chance on his raw skills this offseason.
Just another interesting storyline to watch for in the division on NFL Sunday.
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