Which Bills players could get a closer look?

December, 12, 2013
12/12/13
3:49
PM ET
ORCHARD PARK, N.Y. -- Last Sunday's 27-6 loss to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers gave the Buffalo Bills coaching staff its first significant opportunity to evaluate players who have otherwise been buried on the depth chart this season.

Guard J.J. Unga played seven snaps in place of Kraig Urbik at right guard, while Ty Powell came on for Manny Lawson at linebacker for seven snaps as well.

This week, Unga could start in place of Urbik, who injured his foot, while Marrone said Powell performed well and is in line for more playing time going forward.

With just three games left, the Bills won't have much of a chance to give other players a look, and coming off their worst loss of the season, coach Doug Marrone knows that there are more important goals for the team.

"For us, the most important thing for us is that we have to win a game. We have to put the best guys out there in the best position that we possibly can to win," he said Thursday.

But once Week 17 comes and goes, the Bills won't be able to evaluate their bottom-of-the-roster players in live action until next August. Other than Unga and Powell, here's a look at which players could get an audition in the final three games:

RB Ronnie Wingo -- After the Bills released veteran Tashard Choice, the writing was on the wall for Wingo to receive more playing time. He was active Sunday and played four snaps. The Bills will likely add another running back this offseason, either through the draft or free agency, but Wingo will still be in the mix for a roster spot, especially if he shows something late this season.

WR Chris Hogan -- The Bills got Hogan on the field for eight snaps in Sunday's loss. Now in his third season in the NFL, there may be limited upside for the former lacrosse player, but he can still have a serviceable career as a fifth or sixth receiver.

TEs Tony Moeaki and Chris Gragg -- Moeaki is a veteran, but is coming off an injury and is essentially trying out for the Bills over the final month of the season. Gragg played eight snaps in Sunday's game but earned his first career start. Both players will be in the mix for roster spots next season, but neither is guaranteed anything.

OL Mark Asper, Antoine McClain, Jamaal Johnson-Webb, and Edawn Coughman -- In addition to Unga, these are the young linemen that the Bills have in their system. Unga appears to be leading the pack, but any of these players -- including Johnson-Webb and Coughman, who are on the practice squad -- could be worth a look late in these final games.

DT Stefan Charles -- The Canadian product was impressive in limited action against the Chiefs, which was his Buffalo debut. Since then, he's recorded just three tackles in four games, but it would make sense for his playing time to get increased down the stretch. Veterans Kyle Williams and Marcell Dareus could both use a lighter workload.

Safeties Duke Williams and Jonathan Meeks -- Drafted in back-to-back rounds last April, neither rookie has seen much playing time on defense. The Bills could have a hole at safety this offseason if Jairus Byrd departs through free agency, and at some point, the Bills need to know whether Williams or Meeks can help fill it.

Mike Rodak

ESPN Buffalo Bills reporter

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