PITTSFORD, N.Y. — Time and patience are two qualities center Eric Wood is running out of when asked to consider how long it might take for the Buffalo Bills to become contenders following their latest offseason overhaul.
What’s wrong with this year?
“I’m going into Year 9 and we haven’t made the playoffs and I feel it from everyone in town. I’m as impatient as everyone else,” Wood said after practice Saturday. “And I feel like we’ve got enough talent on this team to make the playoffs and make a run at it. I like this team.”
Defensive tackle Kyle Williams, entering his 12th season in Buffalo, doesn’t want to hear about two- or three-year rebuilding plans either.
“As far as tempering expectations, it won’t happen here,” the 12th-year veteran said. “My expectations are to win.”
What’s difficult to grasp is how realistic those high hopes might be for a team that spent the offseason changing its coaching staff, front office and a roster that currently features 42 players who have one or fewer season of NFL experience. Of the 89 players on the roster, only 30 are left from the group that opened camp a year ago.
Progress can’t happen fast enough for a franchise in the midst of a 17-year playoff drought – the longest active streak in North America’s four major professional sports.
RAIDERS: Oakland opened training camp without Pro Bowl left tackle Donald Penn on the field.
The NFL Network reported that Penn is holding out because he wants to renegotiate his contract. Penn and his agent have not responded to requests for comment, but Penn wasn’t on the field for the Raiders when their first practice started Saturday.
Penn, 34, is coming off his second Pro Bowl after being part of an offensive line that allowed a league-low 18 sacks in 2016.
FALCONS: All-Pro receiver Julio Jones wanted to clear the air in his first media session of training camp.
He isn’t worried about his surgically repaired left foot. He’s also not concerned about his missing earring worth more than $100,000.
Jones’ adventure on a jet ski was a hot topic early in Falcons training camp. An Atlanta TV station reported Jones lost the earring when he fell off the jet ski. WXIA-TV also reported a dive team was attempting to find the earring on the lake bottom.
So before talking football, Jones talked jewelry and water sports.
“I didn’t hire a dive team,” Jones said. “I did not do that. It was insured. I was fine. I didn’t get thrown off or anything. I jumped off the jet ski. So that’s cleared up.”
Jones appears to be fully recovered from the minor foot surgery he had in March, even though he has been limited to individual drills on the field last week.
“The movement and the speed, that’s where he feels good,” Coach Dan Quinn said, adding that he hopes Jones can work his way into 11-on-11 portions of practice this week.
• Falcons wide receiver Devin Fuller will miss the season because of a knee injury, marking the second straight year he’s has had a season-ending injury before playing a game.