With the absence of Eric Wood in the lineup for the Buffalo Bills this week, who starts at center in place of him has been a mystery all week long.
Will it be starting right guard Kraig Urbik shifting over to center, or might it be undrafted rookie David Snow? Even on Friday, head coach Chan Gailey wasn't about to reveal the answer.
When asked if he would shed any light on the offensive line situation for Sunday, Gailey provided a bit of wit to the normally cut-and-paste Friday interview.
"We’ll have five [offensive linemen]," Gailey said. "Every play we’ll have five and some we’ll have six. That’s about as far as I’m ready to go on that. We know what we’re going to do but to be honest with you I don’t want to talk about it right now where everybody’s going to play."
They have to decide whether it's best to start an undrafted rookie at the incredibly important center position, or to affect three starting positions rather than just two by putting Urbik at center.
Whatever the decision will be, odds are it won't be revealed until Sunday.
Since Mark Anderson suffered his injury against San Francisco in Week 5, there has been an onset of ambiguity as to what kind of knee ailment has kept him off the field for seven games.
To this point, all we knew was that Anderson had to have an initial surgical procedure, had a setback, and needed an additional surgery. On Thursday, Anderson cleared up a bit of the confusion.
"It was just a torn lateral meniscus," said the Bills defensive end. "So, they had to go in and scope it out. Then it had a little catch in it, and then we had to re-scope it. That's all it was, just a torn lateral meniscus."
He also updated his progress after head coach Chan Gailey told reporters Wednesday that he was doing much better this week.
"Ever since the second surgery everything has been rolling along," Anderson remarked. "Each day it's getting a little bit better. That's why I'm just taking it one day at a time. Eventually it's going to be where it needs to be and then you'll see me on the field."
Might he be able to get on the field before the end of the season?
"That's the goal," Anderson replied. "At this point, all I can do is take it one day at a time. I'm working hard every day just trying to get back. It's looking good right now, but like I said, I'm just staying focused on the task and that's just to get back on the field."
Anderson has already been ruled out for the Bills' next contest against the St. Louis Rams. He has 12 tackles and one sack in five games this season. This has been the first time Anderson has spoken since his second surgery.
It's been a long and arduous road for Buffalo Bills third-string offensive tackle Sam Young.
During college, Young was trusted enough by a major college program to start as a freshman and continue to do so through his senior season. Leading Notre Dame all-time in career starts, playing time was never an issue for the offensive lineman.
Once the microscope started to focus in on his weaknesses more than his strengths, as any NFL Draft process will do, Young quickly found that it wouldn't be quite as easy as a professional. Taken in the sixth round by Dallas in 2010, Young hooked on for one season before being waived in September of 2011.
The Bills claimed his services shortly after his release, and he's hung around since. Due to multiple injuries to the offensive line, Young is on the precipice of his first career start in the NFL.
Not having a ginormous chance to see the field like this before, Young got a bit philosophical when speaking about what lies ahead for him.
"I think kind of what I've learned in my time, it's important to get your foot in the door," said Sunday's starting right tackle. "Once you get your foot in the door it's all up to you and as far as what you're going to make of your situation. If you say, 'Hey, look, I'm a late round guy,' and you don't take advantage of your opportunity, that's your fault. So, I'm just looking forward to take advantage of it."
I don't know about you, but that sounds more like a life lesson than any football cliché you hear or read time and time again. The same thing was brought up to Young.
"It's a fable," the third-year player said after a laugh. "Yeah, but you've got to look at it with the right attitude."
Young will face a stiff test against a St. Louis defensive line that is fourth in the NFL with 34 sacks. To read about Young and undrafted rookie David Snow, who each will be getting their first career start Sunday for the Bills, click here.
No matter the medium, whether it's a caller to a sports radio program, a commenter on a social media platform or during an in-person conversation, one thing always holds true around Buffalo in December:
Someone is bound to lecture about the early 90s and how home games in December were an advantage for the Bills, using the weather to get in the minds of their opponents.
The difference between 1991 and 2012? It's not only the opponents that dislike the weather conditions.
Take Bills wide receiver Stevie Johnson, for instance. Knowing that another cold and rainy game is on the horizon Sunday, much like the conditions last weekend against Jacksonville, Johnson was not as keen on the forecast as some would probably care for.
"It's gonna be raining, we know that. It sucks, in my own opinion," he said. "Personally, I don't like it at all. But it's beneficial towards our running backs, because come to find out when the weather's bad Freddy [Jackson], he's having those big games. C.J. [Spiller] is hard to stop. Whatever it is for the win, if we're running it a lot then it's cool if our running backs are getting off. But, if you ask me personally how I feel about it, I don't like it all."
Knowing that the inclement weather is at times a gasconading source for Buffalonians, it was quickly pointed out to Johnson that his comments may not go over so well.
"Right. And they take pride in this bad weather. But I'm still a California kid," he said, with a wide smile on his face. "I adapt to it. I try to do what I can, be in position to make the plays and try my best to do it. I know everybody else feels the same way, my receivers. But at the end of the day, we still have to get a win. We may think it's bad, but, think about the dome team coming in. So, we should be able to take advantage of it."
The ever-changing forecast now calls for a high of 41-degrees, 11 mile-per-hour winds and a 50-percent chance of rain. Johnson, the rest of the Bills and the St. Louis Rams will all have to hunker down and attempt to stay warm on Sunday.
During the first of three practices leading up to their game against the Buffalo Bills, the St. Louis Rams were without two key pieces of their offense at practice.
Starting running back Steven Jackson and wide receiver Danny Amendola are among five players that did not participate on Wednesday for the Rams. According to Jim Thomas of the St. Louis Post Dispatch, Jackson has sat out each of the past three Wednesdays with a foot injury and eventually played in the game on Sunday. Meanwhile Amendola's foot injury is on the mend after having to sit out of the team's last game against San Francisco.
Rounding out the Rams' injury report are linebacker Mario Haggan (elbow), tight end Mike McNeill (thigh) and center Scott Wells (knee). All three did not participate in the session.
With the emergence of Buffalo Bills defensive end Kyle Moore as a starter in recent weeks, there hasn't been much talk of free agent acquisition Mark Anderson and fans hoping that he gets back in a timely manner.
Anderson sat out of his seventh straight game on Sunday, and will not play once again when the Bills take on the St. Louis Rams at Ralph Wilson Stadium. Head coach Chan Gailey gave a brief update on his defensive end.
"It'll be tough for him this week, but things are looking a lot better than they were this time last week."
A pair of procedures on his knee were deemed necessary since initially injuring it against San Francisco in October. Whether he can return in time for the contest against the Seattle Seahawks in Toronto has yet to be determined.
When the Buffalo Bills take on the St. Louis Rams at Ralph Wilson Stadium on Sunday, the weather conditions are looking as though they'll be worse than they were last week against Jacksonville.
Varying somewhere between 48 and 53 degrees, a steady rain and an early lead helped the Bills key in on their run game. When they play against the Rams, the weather is projected to boast only a high of 40 degrees, 11 mile-per-hour winds and a 50-percent chance of rain.
With the Rams being a dome team for at least half their season each year, on paper the inclement weather should be a leg-up for the Bills. But like Buffalo, St. Louis is at their best on offense when the team's running game is going.
"[The weather is] only as big an advantage as you make it," said Bills' defensive tackle Kyle Williams. "Teams around the league, even dome teams, they will get out and play in this kind of stuff. But, when we have bad weather games up here, obviously we should be more accustomed to it."
"Obviously I think they want to run the ball. Everything they do, they run the ball to set up everything else, their play action games and things like that. It goes back on what we've talked about the past couple of weeks. We have to have success on first and second down to be able to do anything to disrupt [Sam Bradford]."
Last week, Bills running backs rushed for 186 yards and a touchdown on a whopping 39 carries. In 2012, Steven Jackson and Daryl Richardson have helped the Rams average 115.1 yards per game on the ground.
The Bills and Rams square off in Orchard Park on Sunday.