Phillips, who recently completed his rookie season after being the Bills' third-round pick out of Stanford, is the most likely candidate to take over for the open starting defensive tackle job, Jay Skurski of The Buffalo News reports. "Harrison will compete. He did a good job in year one," general manager Brandon Beane said. "He'll compete to definitely start. I can't say he'll win it, but Harrison did a great job of bringing depth to us last year."
The Bills did re-sign Jordan Phillips -- who will also compete for the job -- on Tuesday, while there's also a ton of free cap money available to beef up the defensive line following the retirement of long-time starter Kyle Williams, among other positions. Even if he has to share the starting job, Harrison Phillips seems a sure bet to take a step up from his 20-tackle rookie season, while he's still looking for his first NFL sack.
Phillips is averaging about 26 snaps per game as the third man in the defensive-tackle rotation behind veteran starters Star Lotulelei and Kyle Williams. The rookie has been doing a nice job and the coaching staff is happy with his progress, but he's not playing enough snaps or getting after the quarterback enough to warrant attention in IDP settings. Phillips' time will come, as he's already being groomed to take over Williams' spot when the 35-year-old eventually calls it a career.
Phillips' teammate Kyle Williams is listed as "week-to-week" with a knee injury suffered in Friday's preseason game.
Phillips, the team's third-rounder in April, has already been tabbed as the No. 3 defensive tackle so he's in line to get starter's time if Williams' injury lingers into the regular season.
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