The Patriots season opener against the Bills is just days away, and Jerod Mayo has an inside take on the upcoming contest.
In the modern NFL, it all starts with the quarterback, and that is where Mayo went first.
There has been much speculation as to whether E.J. Manuel or Jeff Tuel will be the opening day started for the Bills. Even though Manuel has officially been announced as the starter, Mayo says the team isn't taking that as a certainty.
"You have to prepare for both," Mayo said. "They are both somewhat [similar], they both have strong arms and they're both very mobile, very agile. So, I'm sure the game plan will be the same for both of them."
The biggest weapon the Bills contain is not under center though, it resides in the backfield. That would be the former first round pick C.J. Spiller, who broke out for over 1,200 yards rushing on more than 6.0 yards per carry in 2012.
How much of a challenge will he present to the Patriots?
Let's just say, Mayo isn't willing to underestimate Spiller.
"You know what it's tough and it's going to take 11 guys to the football. C.J. Spiller, a guy last year who averages 6 yards per carry, that's unheard of," Mayo said. "It's just obscene. If he gets past [our] potent front seven, those guys in the back end will have to cone him in."
The receiving position in Buffalo is decidedly more bleak (at least for this season). Two rookies and a thus far underwhelming T.J. Graham are three of the four wideouts topping the Bills depth chart.
The other is Stevie Johnson, who does pose a threat to defenses. And, apparently, he is dubious as to how the Patriots will stop him.
Asked about Johnson's potential impact, Mayo offered a brief response.
"We'll see how he does against Patrick Chung."
Indeed. It will be an interesting season to say the least.