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Bills coach Marrone impatient after preseason loss

Wednesday, August 06, 2014 - Updated: 7:18 AM

PITTSFORD (AP) -- Eager to get out to practice, Bills coach Doug Marrone was in no mood for questions on Tuesday.

Marrone provided mostly blunt one-word or one-sentence answers in addressing reporters after his team returned to training camp following a preseason-opening loss.

"We played again and we lost," he said, when asked what he saw reviewing film of the Bills' 17-13 loss to the New York Giants in the Hall of Fame Game in Canton, Ohio, on Sunday.

As for what message he issued his players, Marrone said: "We're practicing tonight and trying to get better."

If that's the case, then the Bills have plenty of work ahead, and little time to get it done during a short turnaround between games.

Buffalo will practice only twice this week before traveling to play the Carolina Panthers on Friday.

On the bright side, the Bills had several injured players set to return to practice. They included tight ends Scott Chandler (groin) and Tony Moeaki (hamstring), who were both hurt during the first two days of camp.

Marrone said he was encouraged by the performance of his starting defense against the Giants. In two series, the Bills starters held New York to minus-2 yards rushing and also forced a lost fumble by quarterback Eli Manning.

And yet, Marrone was unhappy that his starting offense was unable to capitalize on the turnover, which the Bills recovered at the Giants 22. The Bills settled for a field goal after the drive stalled at the 12, and after quarterback EJ Manuel nearly had a pass intercepted on third down.

"I think you're always disappointed," Marrone said, referring to the squandered opportunity.

Manuel also had two of his seven passes batted down at the line of scrimmage, which Marrone blamed on the offensive line.

Manuel had an inconsistent debut. The second-year quarterback completed two passes for 19 yards in two series. And he missed on three attempts directed toward rookie first-round pick Sammy Watkins.

Backup Jeff Tuel produced the only touchdown drive by hitting Robert Woods for a 2-yard pass on fourth down. Tuel also threw an interception on a pass that went off receiver T.J. Graham's hands at the goal line.

"There's always stuff we can improve on," running back Fred Jackson said. "We looked at some of the good things that we did, but we have to focus more on the things that we didn't do well. And there was a lot of stuff we have to get better at."

Safety Aaron Williams was encouraged by how the starting defense played in making its debut under new coordinator Jim Schwartz. The former Lions coach replaced Mike Pettine, who was hired to take over as the Cleveland Browns coach in January.

"I feel like we came out strong and set the tempo for the whole team," Williams said. "We've just got to keep that up."

The Giants scored both touchdowns against the Bills backups on defense.

NOTES: OL Doug Legursky (back) and DB Derek Brim (hip) did not practice. ... Marrone said Woods played into the third quarter on Sunday because the Bills wanted to give him a chance to work in the slot.

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AP NFL website: www.pro32.ap.org and www.twitter.com/AP--NFL

     

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