LINING UP: Browns vs. Bills, Redskins vs. Lions
A look at what to expect in Thursday night's NFL preseason games (all times EDT):
BILLS AT BROWNS, 8 p.m.
Maybe the NFL should let these guys have the night off. Cleveland and Buffalo are bruised and broken.
Both teams have been ravaged by injuries, the latest happening to Bills star running back LeSean McCoy, who hurt his left hamstring in practice on Tuesday as the teams concluded two days of workouts in Rochester, New York.
Cleveland will be missing several starters, including Pro Bowl cornerback Joe Haden, wide receiver Dwayne Bowe and rookie running back Duke Johnson, three of 10 players slowed by soft-tissue injuries. Quarterback-turned-wide receiver Terrelle Pryor hoped to play, but aggravated a hamstring injury Monday. The Browns have five cornerbacks hurt.
Coach Mike Pettine will play presumed opening-week starting quarterback Josh McCown and his other starters up to 25 snaps. QB Johnny Manziel will take over for McCown and play into the third quarter, a chance for him to shine and perhaps close the gap on McCown.
The Bills' three-way quarterback competition resumes with Tyrod Taylor getting his start. Buffalo's group of receivers is also limping with starters Sammy Watkins and Percy Harvin not expected to play.
LIONS AT REDSKINS, 7:30 p.m.
After a so-so exhibition opener, followed by a bit of a brouhaha over comments he made in a TV interview, Redskins quarterback Robert Griffin III gets another chance to show whether he is, indeed, making progress, as coach Jay Gruden keeps saying. Griffin is expected to play for about one quarter, followed by the two QBs competing for the backup job, Colt McCoy and Kirk Cousins.
The Redskins have been hit by injuries at cornerback and tight end in particular. It's uncertain whether a key player at each spot - DeAngelo Hall (toe) and Jordan Reed (hamstring) - will suit up against Detroit.
The Lions will get another look at the breakout star of their first preseason game, running back Ameer Abdullah, a second-round draft pick out of Nebraska. He broke free for a 45-yard run and finished with 67 yards on seven carries against the Jets, while Joique Bell, the team's top returning running back, sat out injured. Haloti Ngata, brought in to replace Ndamukong Suh on the defensive line, missed the opener, too, recovering from a hamstring strain. Neither Bell nor Ngata is expected to play against Washington.
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